INTRODUCTION & SAMPLE APPLICATIONS
Welcome to the Independent Visa Process instructions page! Our goal is to make the visa application process as clear as possible. Although there are a lot of details to take care of, if you follow the steps below, and avoid waiting until the last minute, it does not need to be stressful!
First: download and save a completed visa application packet.
We have prepared these so that you have a visual record of EXACTLY what you will need to take the consulate. This document, used in tandem with the information below, will make the process very clear. There are two versions, one for Trinity students and one for non-Trinity (visiting) students:
Trinity students, download this sample application: Example Visa App - Independent - Trinity.pdf.
Non-Trinity students studying on our program, download this one instead: Example Visa App - Independent - NonTrinity.pdf.
GENERAL INSTRUCTIONS & ADVICE
Please be sure to read all information very carefully, as well as look up the consulate that serves your state/region and make an appointment to go in and drop off your visa application immediately--just be aware that your appointment MUST NOT be sooner than 90 days prior to the start of the program. If you make an appointment more than 90 days before the start of the program, when you show up at the consulate they will most likely turn you away and require you to make another appointment. Also, be aware that not all states have a Consulate and this may require an out of state trip, so check the consulate list at the link above immediately and contact them for an appointment.
A few of you may be citizens of countries outside of the United States. If so, you will need to contact the Italian consulate in your home country to check on visa requirements. You may also call any one of the U.S. consulates (you may want to start with the New York consulate) for information on reaching the consulate in your home country. If you are not a permanent U.S. resident, it is especially critical that you begin working on your visa early. Normally, students who are citizens of a country within the European Union will not need visa materials.
CHECKLIST: WHAT YOU NEED TO BRING TO THE CONSULATE
Documents must be provided in original PLUS include photocopies as indicated in the example application and the checklist below (not all documents need to be provided in copy, but many do--it is essential to include the required copies with your application).
- Download the most recent Visa application from the website of the Consolate that serves your state/region. Make sure you download the LONG TERM visa application (NOT the Schengen short term application). Complete but DO NOT SIGN the application (alternatively, you can sign the application in the presence of a notary--but we recommend just waiting to sign it in front of an officer at the consulate). It is very important that you not show up for your appointment with a signed application that is not notarized. It MUST be notarized OR signed during your appointment.
- Have EIGHT official passport photos taken (these must be official passport photos and not photos taken yourself or taken for any other purpose). Affix one of the eight to the appropriate place on your visa application (it's fine to staple it as long as the staple does not cover any part of your face). Send the other seven photos to the Office of Study Away at Trinity College, 300 Summit Street, Hartford, CT. These will be used to obtain your residency permit, which is a separate process from the visa application.
- Make sure your passport will be valid for at least six months after the end of the program. Bring it with you to the consulate with your other application materials. They will keep your passport while your application is processed and return it to you with the visa pasted to a page inside.
- Make a photocopy of the photo/info page of your passport and include this in the appropriate place within your application materials.
- Print out a copy of your flight itinerary - It can be a one way flight to Italy, if you prefer not to book round trip in case you decide to travel following the semester. Be sure to book your flight before going to the consulate -- you must include the itinerary with your application.
- Bring your student ID and one photocopy of it . You must bring the actual student ID in addition to the photocopy. The only exception is if you have the copy of your ID made, stamped, and signed by a notary.
- For non-U. S. citizens: Bring your Alien Registration Card, or F1 Visa, and updated I-20. Also, bring one copy of each document. Again, if you bring copies and NOT originals, they must be notarized.
- Obtain an enrollment verification letter from your college/university. Click below to see an example of this letter. The letter should include your student status; registration for
following semester, anticipated graduation date, major and current
student ID number. This document is usually issued by the Registrar’s
office, bearing the university seal.
Click here for an example of this letter.
- Obtain a bank letter (on bank letterhead, signed by a bank official) indicating an account in your name with $4000 or more in it, or a joint account between you and a parent holding the same sum, and make one copy of it. Your name MUST be associated with the account, it has to be on bank letterhead and signed by a bank official, and it must indicate an account with in excess of $4000 in it IF you are the only account holder, or $4000 PER ACCOUNT HOLDER if it is a joint account (so, for example, if the account is in the name of both you and a parent, it must have at least $8000 in it). Bank statements will not be accepted. The letter, along with all other application documents, must be dated within the 90 day window prior to departure. Note that the letter should be addressed to the consulate that you will be going to. Click here for a sample letter: BankstatementParents.pdf.
This requirement often raises questions or objections from our participants and their parents. We do not have more specific information on this requirement, nor do we have the authority to waive this (or any other) requirement set by the Italian consulates. Without this letter, a visa to participate in the program may not be granted.
If you are a recipient of
financial aid and cannot produce a bank letter indicating an account with in excess of $4000 in it, you can request that your home college’s
Financial Aid Office prepare a statement of your financial aid award
for your term of study with in Rome. It should indicate the amount of aid for the given term AND the date of disbursement. A financial aid letter should be provided in lieu of the bank letter only if it is impossible to get the bank letter.
You will also need the following documents to complete your application.
- Bring a Fedex envelope, addressed to your home address and postage paid, to your appointment. You will not receive your passport/visa back the day of your appointment, and the consualte will require the Fedex envelope in order to return them to you. DO NOT bring a USPS envelope or a UPS envelope -- it must be Fedex. Be aware that the consulate may, regardless of whether you bring a Fedex envelope, require that you return to pick up your passport/visa when it is ready. Unfortunately, we have no control over this, but if you bring a Fedex envelope, there is a good chance that they will ship it to you and not require you to return.
These will be mailed to your permanent address by the Office of Study Away 80-90 days prior to the start date of the program. You will need to photocopy each of these and provide both in the appropriate places within your application.
• A letter of acceptance to the Rome program
from Trinity College providing for the Study Abroad Program, confirming enrollment status currently, and including your expected graduation year. We will provide an original for you to photocopy. Click here to see what this letter will look like.
• A letter of acceptance from the host campus in Italian.
We will provide this to you and you will need to make a photocopy of it and include both with your application. Click here to see what this letter will look like
.• A declaration of the availability in Italy of the appropriate lodgings. We will provide this to you and you will need to make a photocopy of it and include both with your application.