Visa & Embassy Information

Are you outside the United States?  Do you plan to complete the English proficiency requirement of a conditional admission by attending ELS in St. Paul?

Going to ELS is easy!  But it is different than coming to St. Thomas.

Step 1
Apply to ELS.

Fill out an application to ELS and choose St. Paul, Minnesota as your location.  Indicate on the application that you will need an I-20.
(Click here to learn more about the ELS application process.)

Step 2
Obtain an I-20 from ELS.

Follow up as instructed by ELS to obtain an I-20.
(Click here to learn more about ELS's requirements.) 

Step 3
Apply for a student visa.

You must possess a nonimmigrant, student (F-1) visa to study in the Intensive and Semi-Intensive English programs at ELS.

To obtain an F-1 student visa you will need to present to the U.S. Embassy or U.S. Consulate certain documents to demonstrate your intent to study in the United States and, after completion of your studies, return to your home country.

The documents you need include an I-20 obtained from ELS, proof of financial certification, a valid passport, and evidence of ties to your country.

In addition, a personal interview with a visa officer will be required. ELS recommends that you make an appointment for your interview at least 60-120 days before the date you intend to begin your studies.

More information on how to apply for a student visa, including the required visa application, is available on U.S. Embassy and U.S. Consulate websites, a listing of which may be found at

Step 4
Attend ELS.

Prepare for classes as instructed by ELS.

Once you are at ELS, keep in touch with the University of St. Thomas!

  • As you approach Level 112, contact St. Thomas to ensure that your application for full admission is ready to be completed after you pass your program's English proficiency requirements.
  • If you were conditionally admitted to St. Thomas as an undergraduate, contact St. Thomas as you approach Level 107 or Level 110.
    You might be eligible to attend St. Thomas classes under the USTEP program.