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International Students

Make USC Upstate your new home!

Our goal is to build your confidence in navigating a new culture and in making USC Upstate your new home! USC Upstate is proud to be the home of students from 51 countries and 36 states. You will find a university that offers high-quality academics, as well as the support services you need as an international student. You will study in Spartanburg, S.C., which is home to more than 110 international businesses, including BMW Manufacturing Co., Toray, Adidas and Michelin.

Cultural highlights include dining, arts and entertainment. You can enjoy rock concerts, theater performances and classical music in our town, in addition to attending festivals, fairs, sporting events or visiting museums and galleries. Interested in natural beauty, the campus is within hours of beautiful South Carolina beaches and within minutes to area lakes, mountain terrain and waterfalls.

Let’s Get Started

If you’re ready to be a Spartan, start your application.
You must submit an application to be considered for admission with a $100 non-refundable application fee.

Check the status of your application.
Check out the enrollment checklist to ensure you are on the right track.

Once you’re admitted, make plans to attend Orientation.

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  • USC Upstate welcomes the applications of international students. Because you will have many arrangements to make in order to attend the University, it is important that you apply at least six months before the semester in which you plan to begin your studies.

    Use the enrollment checklist to ensure you stay on track.

    • Apply online
    • Submit the $100 non-refundable application fee
    • English Proficiency

    An international student at the University must be proficient in English (i.e., a minimum Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL) score of 500 (paper based) or 173 (computer based) or 61 (internet based) or IELTS of six; TOEFL is not required of students whose native language is English) and be a high-school graduate (which means you must have completed about 12 years of pre-collegiate education in your country of origin).

    International applicants must also provide official copies of school transcripts or certificates of satisfactory study (such as “A” or “O” levels, baccalaureate, bachillerato, Abitur or other school certificates). These records must include an English translation of the subjects you have studied and the grades you made in each subject. Ensure that the school’s grading system is explained.

    Sufficient Funding
    The Admissions Office must receive official documents that certify that the student will have sufficient funding to attend the University of South Carolina for one calendar year. This evidence will be used to issue an immigration document (I-20 or IAP-66), which will be required to obtain the F-1 or J-1 student visa at a US embassy or consulate. Students must also complete the Financial Certification Form. International graduate students must submit the Financial Certification – Graduate form (PDF).

    Credential Evaluation
    Students who have attended post-secondary educational institutions, colleges or universities outside of the United States are required to submit a professional credential evaluation of all work completed. This is generally referred to as a course-by-course report. A course-by-course report should be sent directly to the Admissions Office from the evaluation service. An admission decision will be made once the official evaluation is on file and all other required materials are received.

    If you are currently enrolled in a term or semester, you should contact the evaluation service about getting a partial evaluation done. A final evaluation will be required prior to enrollment.

    Request your evaluation online at

  • Print this checklist to help guide you through the enrollment process.

    If you have any questions, contact the Office of Admissions.

    1. Take SAT/ACT if under the age of 22: Request scores be forwarded to Admissions Office.
    2. Take TOEFL or IELTS unless native language is English: Request scores be forwarded to Admissions Office.
    3. Apply online and pay the $100 non-refundable application fee.
    4. Submit high school and college transcripts. All transcripts must be translated into English prior to sending to the Admissions Office.
    5. All transcripts issued by colleges not located in the United States must be sent to World Education Service for evaluation at
    6. Send Financial Certification form.  International graduate students must submit the Financial Certification – Graduate form.
    7. Send request for I-20 (PDF) if student visa is needed for entry to USA. Form I-20 will be issued by the Admissions Office for accepted students.
    8. Take I-20 form to the appropriate authorities in home country to obtain a student visa prior to travel to the USA.
    9. Pay SEVIS fee and take receipt with you to embassy. Pay fee at click international students; then click SEVIS 901 fee.
    10. Apply for on-campus housing.
    11. Complete placement testing prior to Orientation.
    12. Submit Orientation reservation.
    13. Submit immunization records and health history form.
    14. Attend Orientation.
    15. Send final transcripts.
    16. Contact your roommate before coming to campus.
    17. Provide proof of health insurance coverage or purchase from Upstate.
  • Refer to this checklist to help guide you through the enrollment process.
    If you have any questions, contact the Center for International Studies.

    1. Apply online (ISEP students should select the application fee Waive option rather than submitting payment).
    2. Submit TOEFL, IELTS, or ISEP testing scores unless your native language is English.
    3. Submit university transcripts. All transcripts must be translated into English prior to sending to the Admissions Office.
    4. Coordinate with ISEP to obtain J-1 student visa.
    5. After receiving your USC Upstate identification number, apply for on-campus housing.
    6. Submit Orientation reservation. International students should register for the final orientation program in August or January. There will be sessions specifically for ISEP exchange participants.
    7. Submit immunization records and health history form.
    8. Attend Orientation.
    9. Contact your roommate before coming to campus.
    10. Provide proof of ISEP health insurance coverage.
    11. Provide your flight itinerary to the Center for International Studies. Airport pick-up is available to students who arrive at Greenville/Spartanburg International Airport (GSP).
    12. Provide a copy of your J-1 visa to the Center for International Studies.
    13. Register for courses. Registration may only happen after USC Upstate receives a copy of your J-1 student visa.

International Student Orientation

As an international student at USC Upstate, you are also required to attend orientation. Within these orientation programs, a special session is held for international students to help you get better situated at USC Upstate. Visit Student Orientation.