Dixie State University

New Students

Welcome Home!

Congratulations on making the choice to attend Dixie State University – we are looking forward to meeting you!

We know that preparing for University in a new country can be difficult, but the International Student Services Office is here to help. We have the resources, connections, and knowledge to help you succeed during your time as a student at DSU. Review the information on this page about your next steps for joining Trailblazer Nation!

Acquiring A Student Visa:

1. Pay Enrollment Deposit & Receive I-20

After being admitted, you will be provided instructions for paying the $500 USD enrollment deposit. You must pay this fee before we can send you your I-20 or DS-2019. The deposit is not an additional expense. Instead, it is a portion of your first semester tuition billed early. If paid from a U.S. bank account, payment can be made at pay.dixie.edu. If paid from a bank account outside of the U.S., please use Flywire.

After payment clears (can take up to up 7 business days), your I-20 or DS-2019 will be provided to you digitally, which is currently allowed under current Department of Homeland Security (DHS) guidance.

If you are denied a visa or choose not to attend Dixie State University after paying the fee, approximately $475 of the deposit can be refunded to you as long as you notify iss@dixie.edu by the first day of classes for your admission term.

Flywire: For Payments Made Outside of the U.S.

2. Research Nonimmigrant Visa Application Process

In the steps below, our office has provided general information about the typical process of applying for a nonimmigrant visa to study in the United States. Every student situation and home country has slightly different requirements, however, so it is important that you also do individual research on the application process. Before proceeding with the next steps, we suggest reviewing the general information about applying for select nonimmigrant visas here: F-1 student visa (I-20) & J-1 exchange visitor visa (DS-2019). Another great resource for incoming F-1 international students is the Study in the States website, which is managed by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security, which oversees the F-1 student visa program.

Note: Citizens of Canada and Bermuda do not need to apply for an F-1 student visa and may enter the U.S. on a valid I-20. Citizens from these two countries do not need to submit the DS-160 application, schedule a visa interview, or pay the visa fee. They are required, however, to pay the I-901 SEVIS Fee (step 4). When traveling to the U.S. you will need to present a valid I-20 and the I-901 SEVIS Fee receipt.

F-1 Student Visa Information

3. Complete DS-160 Application

Once you receive your signed I-20 or DS-2019, you need to complete a DS-160: Online Nonimmigrant Visa Application. You will be interviewing for an F-1 student visa if you have an I-20 or J-1 exchange visitor visa if you have a DS-2019. After submitting, be sure to print your confirmation page – you do not need to print the entire application.

Note: In addition to submitting the DS-160, you must also schedule an interview. Information collected on the DS-160 and gathered during your interview are used to evaluate your petition for a visa. See step 4 for information about scheduling the visa interview.

Information on DS-160

4. Pay I-901 Fee

Once you have submitted your DS-160, you should pay the $350 I-901 SEVIS Fee. You can read more about this fee and make the payment for it here: I-901 Fee. Be sure to print your receipt after payment. Bring the receipt to your visa interview and to the U.S. border when you travel to the U.S. to begin your studies.

I901 Fee Information and Payment Portal

5. Schedule Visa Interview

Make an appointment to interview. Typically you may interview as early as 120 days prior to your program start date.

You can check current estimated wait times for a visa interview appointment at your local embassy or consulate using this website: Visa Interview Wait Times. Be prepared for these wait times to increase during busy travel months. Many international students will be applying for visas during June and July, so expect long wait times during these months.

Please review the website for the U.S. consulate or embassy in your home country for specific information and required materials to apply for your nonimmigrant visa and for information on how to schedule your visa interview. A list of embassies, consulates, and diplomatic missions can be found here: U.S. Embassies and Consulates.

The interview is conducted in English and typically lasts just a few minutes, so be prepared ahead of time! The following is a list of common requirements to bring to your visa interview – this is NOT an official list. Always follow the requirements listed on the website of the U.S. embassy or consulate in your home country for up-to-date and accurate information.

  1. Valid passport. You will need to renew your passport before applying if any of the following are true:
    1. Passport will expire less than six months after your planned arrival in the U.S.
    2. Passport is damaged.
    3. Passport has no remaining blank pages.
  2. One photograph. See the consulate or embassy’s website for specific photo requirements.
  3. DS-160 Confirmation Page. You are required to bring your confirmation page with your application ID number on it so that the embassy or consulate can retrieve your DS-160 record.
  4. Supplemental visa application forms. Check the website of your local U.S. consulate or embassy to determine if any additional application forms are required in addition to the DS-160.
  5. I-901 SEVIS Fee receipt.
  6. Visa application fee payment or receipt. You can view current fees for nonimmigrant visa services here: Fees for Visa Services. Check your country’s specific embassy or consulate website for more information on how and where to pay.
  7. Form I-20 properly completed and signed by both the Designated School Official (DSO) and you, the applicant OR Form DS-2019 completed and signed by both the Responsible Officer (RO) and you, the applicant. The name on the form must exactly match the name in your passport.
  8. Proof of finances: Proof that you can support yourself during your entire stay in the U.S. without working. Bring the same forms you submitted for admission to DSU as well as any supplemental proof of finances or ties to your home country.

List of U.S. Embassies and Consulates

6. Attend Your Visa Interview

Most importantly, be honest during your visa interview. Before issuing a visa, the U.S. consular official must be convinced that you have a residence outside the United States that you have not abandoned and that you have not decided to seek permanent residence in the U.S. It is important to show the officer that you have strong ties to your country of residence, such as family, community or social ties, documents showing membership in professional organizations and religious groups, a family business, ownership of property, bank accounts, a job offer, or evidence that people with the kind of education you are seeking are needed.

Questions the consular official might ask:

  • Why do you want to study in the U.S.?
  • Why do you want to study ______________?
  • Why did you choose Dixie State University?
  • How will your degree be used in your home country?
  • What are your employment prospects?
  • What are your plans after completing your academic program?
  • How will you fund your studies?

Practice your English before the visa appointment, and bring physical documents to help substantiate your responses! Principally, consular officials are trying to determine that you plan to enter the U.S. as a legitimate, serious student, that you have sufficient finances to support your studies, and that you plan to depart the U.S. at the end of your studies. The F-1 student visa is a nonimmigrant visa.

Helpful Tips For Your Visa Interview

7. Await Decision

Wait times vary by country and individual student case. We recommend that students allow a minimum of 2-3 weeks to receive a decision on their petition for a nonimmigrant visa. Please note that Dixie State University has no ability to influence wait times or decisions made by your local embassy or consulate.

If you are denied a student visa, you have probably not sufficiently proven to the consular officer that you are entitled to student status. In most cases, the denial will be based on failure to prove “permanent residence” or “strong ties” to your home country. A visa denial is not permanent and may be reconsidered if you can show additional, convincing evidence. We strongly suggest that you contact our office if you are denied a visa so that we can advise you prior to your second application. Do not enter the U.S. on a visitor (B1/B2) visa or under the visa waiver program with plans to study at DSU.

While you await a decision, please work on other pre-arrival requirements detailed within your application DSU. You can log back into the application here: Return to DSU Application.

While Applying For Your Visa:

1. Configure Your DMail Account

Upon acceptance to DSU you will be assigned a Dixie Google Email account. On campus, we refer to this as your “Dmail.” This email address serves as the official form of communication between you and Dixie State University.

In your digital acceptance letter you will find your Dmail username. To access your Dmail, visit dmail.dixie.edu. When logging in to your Dmail, you will use your Dixie ID followed by @dmail.dixie.edu (example: D00000000@dmail.dixie.edu). Before you will be able to log into any of your Dixie State University accounts you must first go to changepassword.dixie.edu and set up a secure password. You will use your DixieID as your username and then select Forgotten Password; then follow the prompts to set your secure password. Once you have completed this step you will be able to log into any of your Dixie State University accounts using your DixieID and your new password.

For security reasons, you have also been assigned a Dmail alias that you can give out as your email address, as you may not want everyone to know your D-number. Your alias is typically your firstname.lastname (example: brooks.bison@dmail.dixie.edu). Remember, you must use your ‘D-number’ when logging into dmail.dixie.edu.

Check your Dmail regularly in order to stay on top of what is happening at Dixie State.

For additional assistance, visit the Helpdesk website.

2. Research Housing

New students are not required to live in on-campus housing at DSU. However, if you are a recipient of the Continuing and Transfer Scholarship for International Students, please be reminded that living on campus is a requirement for your funding.

There are many great student housing options both on and off campus at Dixie State University. To ensure the best student housing experience, students are encouraged to find and identify their housing preferences sooner rather than later as most complexes assign bed spaces on a “first come, first served” basis. Begin exploring and planning now to make your student housing experience both comfortable and enjoyable!

Remember: lease agreements are binding contracts. This means that if you sign a lease agreement, you are responsible for all rent payments, even if you are denied a visa or move out before the end of the contract. It is recommended that you do not book housing until your visa application is approved. Depending on when you applied, however, this may not be possible. Use your best judgement in making housing reservations, and always keep your options open as your first choice may not be available by the time you apply.

Start Now

3. Browse Scholarship Offerings

New freshman students will automatically be considered for International Student Services’ Freshman Merit Scholarship. Transfer students should review the eligibility requirements for the Transfer Scholarship and are encouraged to submit an application if they meet the minimum criteria. Please be aware that international students are not eligible for federal financial aid through the U.S. government.

In addition to the scholarships through international student services, students are encouraged to browse external awards. These scholarships are not managed by International Student Services, and our office is unable to provide guidance or advice about these awards. All students are encouraged to review each award for minimum eligibility and consider applying if they believe they would be a good candidate. You can view some external scholarships here: Additional Scholarships. Applicants are also encouraged to do personal research for awards that we may not be familiar with.

International Student Services Scholarships

4. Plan for Orientation

International Student Orientation is held during the week prior to the first week of classes at DSU. Attendance at orientation is mandatory, so do not make alternative travel or social plans during this time. Orientation will cover cultural adjustment to life in the U.S., immigration compliance information, how to stay involved on campus, academic expectations, and other topics that will help you make the most out of your time at Dixie State University. It will also provide you the opportunity to meet other new international students.

5. Plan Your Arrival

International students are encouraged to wait to make their travel plans until they have been approved for a visa. Once approved, it is usually best to check with our office about available airport pick-up services prior to booking your transportation. You will also want to confirm your earliest move-in date with your housing provider.

The initial session start date listed on your I-20 is the Monday before classes begin for your admission term. Please plan to arrive in the U.S. by no later than the Wednesday after your initial session start date.

Remember that you are not allowed to enter the U.S. more than 30 days prior to the initial program start date listed on your visa. Once you have travel arrangements, please submit the “Arrival Information” form available on the Applicant Status Page of your enrollment checklist (access it by logging back into your application). You can view additional information about arrival to DSU here: Arriving at DSU.

Arriving to DSU

6. Purchase International Student Health Insurance

All Dixie State University International Students are required to purchase medical health insurance. Dixie State University has specific health insurance requirements that the plan must have. Your health insurance policy must meet or exceed these minimums required by Dixie State University:

Medical Benefits                        $100,000 per accident or illness

Repatriation of Remains          $25,000

Medical Evacuation                   $50,000

Maximum Deductible               $500 per accident or illness

Failure to hold adequate insurance coverage will result in a hold being placed on your student account. Holds prevent students from registering for classes or changing their academic schedule. This hold will only be released by supplying evidence of proper insurance. If you believe your current insurance coverage meets these minimums, you may send it to iss@dixie.edu for verification. Please make sure that the plan information is in English.

For students who need to purchase insurance: DSU does not require health insurance from any specific provider. The below providers have often been used by DSU’s international students and all meet the minimum required coverage.  You are welcome to use medical insurance from your home country or any company of your choice as long as it meets the minimum required coverage outlined above.

Examples of companies our students have used in the past:

International Student Insurance (ISO)

PSI Health Insurance

World Trips Insurance

Students may also choose to work with Steven Fraser, Local Marketplace Agent:

U.S. Government Marketplace Insurance

  • There is no charge to work with this local agent
  • Please ask DSU staff for Steven Fraser’s DSU office hours to meet with him on campus or call/email him directly to setup an appointment. Contact iss@dixie.edu for his contact information.

Upon Arrival to St. George:

1. Check-in with the International Student Services Office

You are required to check-in with a Designated School Official (DSO) after arriving to the U.S. We will schedule a time to meet with you once we have your arrival details emailed to the iss@dixie.edu inbox or registered within your DSU application. For many students, this will be during the orientation.

2. Get Your Tuberculosis (TB) Test

All international students attending DSU are required to get a TB blood test once they have arrived in the United States.  The International Student Services office will help you schedule your TB testing appointment with the DSU Health & Wellness Center during New Student Orientation.  The cost for a TB test is $110.  If you have TB test results from your previous institution within the U.S., please send a color copy to iss@dixie.edu for verification.

3. Take Placement Examinations

ESL Students: You will take an English language assessment to determine which level of ESL you should begin in (Basic, Beginner, Intermediate, or Advanced).

Degree-seeking Students: In the United States, high school students typically take one of two standardized tests: the ACT or the SAT. Dixie State University uses their scores to determine which level of English and Math courses are most appropriate for new student enrollment. For example, students who score high on the math section may be able to enroll directly into Calculus without having to take Pre-Calculus or Trigonometry.

If you have taken the ACT or SAT, please send a score report to iss@dixie.edu. If you have not, you will be required to complete placement testing prior to Math or English enrollment. Only students who have ACT/SAT scores and transfer students who have fulfilled DSU’s general education requirements for Math and English can be exempted from this requirement. Required Tests:

  1. ACCUPLACER Reading Test ($10 if taken at DSU’s testing center)
  2. ACCUPLACER Writing Test ($10 if taken at DSU’s testing center)
  3. ALEKS Math Test ($26 if taken at DSU’s testing center).

Placement tests can either be taken remotely prior to arrival (includes additional cost) or after arrival during new international student orientation. Instructions for taking the tests remotely and additional cost information are included in your post-admission enrollment checklist. Access this checklist by logging back into your DSU application here: Return to DSU Application.

Be advised that low scores on the English assessment may result in you being enrolled in our English as a Second Language (ESL) program, even if your English Proficiency test score was high enough for us to issue admission and immigration paperwork as a degree-seeking student. It is uncommon for students with sufficient English proficiency test scores to require ESL classes, but it can happen. Thus, it is important that you take the tests seriously and give your best effort as scholarship funding cannot be provided to students enrolled in ESL classes.

4. Finalize Class Registration

All new students should work with an academic advisor to register for their first semester classes. Working with an academic advisor helps you create a schedule that ensures you make progress toward your academic goals and that is compliant with immigration requirements. Students must be registered full-time (at least 12 credits) during their first semester of attendance.

Degree-seeking students: Students who have been admitted to a degree program will work with an academic advisor prior to arrival to build a draft schedule. Completing the schedule may require placement testing. Upon arrival to the U.S., students will have the opportunity to finalize their schedule and make any edits during international student orientation.

ESL students: Students who have been admitted to the ESL program will be registered after arriving to the U.S. Registration will be based on how they score on their English placement test.

You can view upcoming course registration dates using Dixie State University’s Academic Calendar. Review academic program information here: Academic Information for International Students.

Academics for International Students

5. Pay Your Tuition & Fees

Tuition is billed per semester and is due on the first day of classes. Please make all payment arrangements before the payment deadline. If you are receiving financial aid or scholarship assistance, you are responsible for any remaining account balance after these awards are applied to your student account.

You can pay your tuition online by logging into your myDixie account, or you can pay by cash or check at the Cashier’s Office located on the 1st floor of the Holland Centennial Commons. Payments for students without a U.S. bank account can also be made through Flywire.

Payment plan:
If you are unable to pay your tuition in full, there is a payment plan available. This will divide the tuition into equal payments over the course of the current semester.

Questions about payment plans? Email cashier@dixie.edu.

Payment Plan Information

6. Maintain F-1/J-1 Student Compliance

Make sure you follow standard compliance to maintain your student status. Learn how it ties in with employment, international travel, enrollment, and other scenarios by reviewing this website: Immigration Compliance Information.

Immigration & Compliance

Office Hours

Sunday

    Closed.

Monday

  • 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

Tuesday

  • 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

Wednesday

  • 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

Thursday

  • 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

Friday

  • 8:00 am - 5:00 pm

Saturday

    Closed.

International Student Services

Email: iss@dixie.edu

Phone: 435-879-4686

Office: SAC, First Floor