Financial Documentation Guidelines for New International Students

This section is provided to answer general questions about financial documentation required to provide an I-20 (F-1 students) or a DS-2019 (J-1 students) for study at NDSU.

International students who are admitted at North Dakota State University (NDSU) will need to obtain an I-20 (F-1 students) or a DS-2019 (J-1 students) to pursue studies at NDSU. This requirement applies to both international students coming from abroad and international students transferring from another U.S. institution. You must provide evidence of financial support for all anticipated educational and living expenses for study in the U.S. before an I-20 or DS-2019 can be provided. F-1 students are required to show 1 year of funding. J-1 students are required to show funding for the full duration of their program (for example, 3 years for a Master's program) - your international student advisor will determine the total amount of funding required, depending on the duration of your J-1 program.

Please note if you are a graduate applicant receiving an assistantship and tuition waiver, this amount will be applied towards the total amount needed for issuance of immigration documents.

Estimated Expenses for Study at NDSU

In addition to the educational expenses noted below, students should also prepare additional funding for personal miscellaneous expenses of housing/meals during vacation periods, clothing, local transportation and medical costs not covered by insurance that may arise throughout their study at NDSU. Click to learn about costs by viewing our Estimate of Expenses

Support Needed for Dependents

In addition to the total cost shown above in estimated costs, we require an additional $8,500 for a spouse; and $3,500 for each child.

Acceptable Forms of Financial Documentation

The evidence you provide must be official documents (in English) and all must be less than 1 year old. After review of your documents is complete, more recent documentation may be requested at the discretion of your international student advisor. To expedite the process, NDSU accepts scanned copies of official documents, but reserves the right to request the original official documents by postal mail if needed. The following types of financial documentation can be accepted and you may use a combination of resources:

  • Bank statement or certificate of balance/certificate of deposit signed by a bank official on official bank letterhead indicating the current balance from yourself, your family or another individual sponsor. Note: Bank documentation must be from a checking, savings, or time deposit account. Brokerage (stock funds), property or real estate, life insurance, jewelry, or any other non-liquid assets are NOT ACCEPTABLE. Also, the type of currency must be clearly indicated on the financial documentation.
  • For students who are sponsored by an international organization, government, or institution: A scholarship or sponsorship letter is required, which verifies the amount, source, and length of award.
  • For graduate students only: If you are a graduate student applicant and have received an assistantship offer from your department, the Office of International Student and Study Abroad Services will receive a copy of your admission letter from the Graduate School, which usually contains the assistantship information needed.


Please contact our office if you have any questions regarding your financial documentation. 

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