Inviting Family to the U.S.

Inviting Family Members to Visit the U.S.

During or upon completion of your studies at Columbia College Chicago you may want to invite your parents or other family members to visit. Here are some suggestions to help them apply for a visitor’s visa (B-2) at a US consulate or embassy in their home country. Applications for any US Visas must happen outside the US.

To facilitate their visa interview process you should do the following:

  • Write a letter of invitation and include the following:
    • Your relationship to the individuals you are inviting
    • A statement of your status here (i.e. an F-1 student in good-status)
    • Itinerary details, including the length of time they will be visiting and where they will stay
      • Make sure it is less than 3 months for a B visa, and it is best to emphasize the temporary nature of the visit.
  • Include an Enrollment Verification Letter from the Registrar's Office to confirm your student status.
    • You can do this in person at 600 S Michigan Ave, 3rd Floor. It's also useful to bring the Verifcation Form with. You can find that here.
    • Graduate students who hold an GAship may want to also attach a departmental funding letter.
  • If you are graduating and they are traveling to attend your commencement ceremony, provide details of the Commencement Ceremony.
  • For additional information about U.S. consulate/embassy locations and application procedures, review the U.S. Department of State visa information.

Providing your family members with this documentation may improve their chances of obtaining a visa; however, there is no guarantee a visa will be issued. The success of their request for a visa lies in their ability to prove that they have no intention of staying permanently in the U.S.

If you'd like assistance from the ISSS office, please e-mail isss@colum.edu and someone can review your letter.