Depart for the United States only after you receive formal notice of acceptance and the I-20/DS-2019 Form from the Office of Admissions, and obtain the student visa. You are only allowed to enter the U.S. up to 30 days prior to the start date on the Certificate of Eligibility.
All international students holding F and J visa will be required to comply with U.S. Government regulations. The Student/Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) is designed to help the U.S. Government keep track of nonimmigrant students. The U.S. Department of Homeland Security now requires that a SEVIS fee be paid for each visa applicant. The Office for International Students and Scholars has more information on the SEVIS fee. The Certificate of Eligibility (for I-20 or DS-2019) that MSU issues to you has an unique identifying number referred to as the SEVIS number or "N" number. This SEVIS number is needed to pay the SEVIS fee. Please print out your receipt when you pay the SEVIS fee and keep it for your records. You must present the Certificate of Eligibility every time you enter the U.S. It is very important that you keep track of this form.