Applying for a Visa

When applying for a non-immigrant visa (H-1B, H-4, J-1, J-2, O-1, B-1) you need to make an appointment at the US Consulate having jurisdiction over your place of residence abroad. All non-immigrant visa applications require the form DS-160  Some applicants may also need to complete form DS-157 Supplemental Nonimmigrant Visa Application or form DS-158 Contact Information and Work History for Nonimmigrant Visa Applicants.

J-1 visa applicants will need the following when applying for the visa in addition to the mentioned State Department Forms and appropriate fees  

  • A valid passport
  • Form DS-2019 issued  by WPI and containing the SEVIS

Number and Program Number

  • The official appointment letter issued  by the WPI Provost Office
  • A receipt showing the SEVIS Fee  has  been paid
  • Evidence of your ties to your home country. As a non-immigrant visa applicant it is assumed that you will return to your own country at the end of your stay in the US.
  • One  passport-type photograph (2x2inches full face  photo against a white background
  • If not 100% funded by WPI (as shown in the appointment letter), financial documentation showing the amount and the name of the sponsoring agency. If personal funds are used, you need to have clear documentation that you have the funds available.

H-1B visa applicants will need the following when applying for  the H-1B visa in addition to the  mentioned State Department Forms and appropriate fees.

  • A valid passport
  • The H-1B approval notice ( Form I-797A)
  • Copy of diploma for the degree  used when filing for  the H-1B
  • WPI appointment letter
  • Copy of the Labor Condition Application filed by WPI for  the position
  • A Resume  or CV
  • The applicant will need enough information about the position to clearly articulate the  type  of  work/research they will participate  in.

Visitor Visa. There are four immigration classifications that allow entry to the U.S. as a visitor. Collectively, these four options are often referred to as “visitor status”.

  • B-1: Visitor for  business
  • B-2: Visitor for  tourism
  • WB: Visa waiver for business
  • WT: Visa waiver for tourism

Persons in visitor status are granted legal admission to the U.S. for a specific period of time. The maximum period for B-1/B-2 is typically six months. The maximum period of stay for WB/WT is 90 days. Visitor categories do not permit for U.S employment.

The visitor category is typically used for attending a WPI Conference/ workshop, or short duration 2-5 weeks visits to collaborate with WPI faculty. Prospective visitors are advised to consult with the Office of International Scholar and Faculty Services to determine if a visitor category is appropriate for the planned activity.