INTERNATIONAL STUDENT INFORMATION – NYC CAMPUS
International Student Enrollment at LSTFI New York City
We welcome international students and have hosted students from over 140 different countries. We will guide and assist you throughout the application process and during your studies.
ADMISSIONS: The admissions process is the same for domestic and international students with the addition of proof of English proficiency. We require a high level of English proficiency. If you are from a country where the official language is not English, then in your application you will submit evidence of English language proficiency such as a test score (TOEFL, Pearsons, IELTS , Cambridge) , a transcript from a school where the language of instruction was English, or other evidence may be considered. Options for proof of English proficiency include:
- TOEFLibt score of 85 or equivalent in Cambridge (TOEFL School Code: New York campus: 3753, and no dept code or dept. name)
- Pearsons PTE score of 58 or above
- IELTS of 6.5
- Other language tests or ESL Certificate will be considered
- Transcript from a high school or post-secondary school where the language of instruction is English.
HOW EARLY TO APPLY: We have rolling admissions for all programs and accept applications up to one year prior to the desired program start date. We continue to accept appliations up to the program start date, space permitting. Programs do fill up, so it’s advisable to apply early- 2 to 6 months prior to start date.. For students who will need to apply for a visa and enter the US, you need to allow extra time depending on the visa wait time in your country. You may find information on the website of the US Consulate in your country. As well, the US State Department provides estimated visa wait times on this site: VISA APPOINTMENT WAIT TIMES
TUITION: International students pay an additional $100 administrative fee per term, all other fees are the same as domestic students. Tuition and Start Dates
Duration of stay in the US on F-1 visa: On the F-1 student visa you may enter the US up ot 30 days prior to the session start date. You may stay in the US thoughout your studies and for up to 60 days (called the “grace period”) after your program ends.
Obtaining the F-1 Student Visa (Non U.S Citizens only)
The Lee Strasberg Theatre & Film Institute is authorized under Federal law to enroll nonimmigrant alien students.
International students who are admitted to one of our full time programs (22 hours or more per week) and have provided the required financial documents will be issued an I-20 Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status which is required to apply for the F-1 student visa.
Full-time programs include: Two Year Conservatory, One Year Conservatory, 12 Week Program (22 hours per week), Mid-Summer Intensive and Late Summer Intensive (28 hours per week). You may not attend these programs on a tourist visa/visa waiver/ESTA. View our programs here: NY Acting Programs. Note- our new online programs do not require an I-20 application for new students outside the US, as it’s not possible to enter the US to study only online. When in person classes resume this page will be updated with instructions.
If you will be in the US on another type of visa that allows full-time study (i.e. H-4, O-1, any dependent status visa) then you do not need an I-20 Certificate and are considered a Domestic student for application purposes.
Steps to receiving the I-20 Certificate and applying for an F-1 visa.
- First you must be fully admitted to a full time program after submitting a complete application and being interviewed. You will receive an email after admission with instructions on what to submit to receive an I-20 Certificate.
- Submit the Affidavit of Support and supporting financial documentation to prove funding is readily available to cover tuition and living costs ($2000 per month) Click here for the Affidavit of Support and Instructions. (Don’t complete this if your program start date is more then 6 months away.)
- We will create your I-20 Certificate in the SEVIS system and email you the information needed (SEVIS # and school code) to make a visa interview appointment for the F-1 visa at a US Consulate.
- We will email you a link where you will pay the Federal Express or UPS shipping fee and enter your shipping address and the information on how to pay the $350 SEVIS I-901 fee. (Due to Covid-19 I-20 Certificates are sent by email as per SEVP guidance)
- You will make a visa interview appointment: View the website of the US Embassy in your country and follow directions to submit an online DS-160 visa application for the F-1 student visa (non-immigrant visa) and schedule a visa interview appointment. You will pay a fee for the visa application.
- You will receive and sign your original I-20 Certificate and bring to your visa interview.
TRANSFERRING FROM AN F-1 SCHOOL: If you are currently in the US on an F-1 visa then you may transfer your SEVIS record to us (This applies to our online programs only for F-1 students presently in the US) . Please be sure to pay close attention the rules for transferring and deadlines so that you don’t fall out of status.
We will provide any needed advising throughout the process of obtaining your I-20, applying for the visa and maintaining your F-1 status while you are in the US.
There are no work opportunities while you study. We do not offer on-campus employment. You must have the funds to support yourself in the US without needing to work.
One Year and Two Year Conservatory students are eligible for up to 12 months of Post-Completion Optional Practical Training (OPT) after completion of studies. OPT provides work authorization to engage in work that is directly related to the program of studies only.
Your stay in the US is automatically extended if you are approved for OPT .