Are you ready to begin your international experience at Colorado Mesa University?
Colorado Mesa University is committed to making your international student experience in the United States exceptional. With students from 30 countries and a student body and campus that welcomes diversity, international students feel well supported from the moment they apply through graduation and beyond.
The International Programs and Services Office assists with the admission and visa process, offers new students an orientation and welcome activities, and provides international student support services while enrolled at CMU. Academic support, university-wide events, student clubs and other social activities all help you network and develop a sense of belonging and ensure your academic success as a Colorado Mesa University student.
Are you ready to apply? Choose your student type below to view admission requirements and get your admission process started today!
EducationUSA centers are the U.S. State Department‘s network of hundreds of advising centers in 170 countries designed to assist local students find the appropriate college or university in the United States.
Admissions Information and Requirements
View admission requirements for:
- International first-time undergraduate students
- International transfer students
- International graduate students
Annie Gingerich, M.A.
Associate Director, International Programs and Services
970.248.1802 or 970.248.1875
Frequently Asked Questions
Am I an international student?
An "international student" is student who will hold a student visa while enrolled at Colorado Mesa University. The following ARE NOT considered international students: U.S. permanent residents (green-card holders), undocumented students living in the U.S., or documented refugees or asylees. The following ARE considered international students: non-U.S. citizens wishing to hold a visa (F-1, J-1, H-1 or any others) while enrolled at Colorado Mesa University. This includes visa-holders who have or are attending a U.S. high school or university.
The grading system in my country is different from that in the United States. How can I determine if I would be a reasonable candidate for admission?
There are many resources available that convert foreign education credits to a US Grade Point Average (GPA). The only guaranteed method is to have your school records reviewed by our International Programs and Services Office.
How can I get involved once I arrive at Colorado Mesa University?
The International Student Alliance (ISA) offers a unique opportunity to interact with students from all different backgrounds and provides guidance to new students on how to deal with culture shock, language barriers, tips for success and much more. To learn more about the ISA and the many other clubs and activities at Colorado Mesa University, please visit Student Life.
How do I sign up for my classes?
Beginning as early as April (if starting in the fall semester), admitted students can register for classes through the Academic Advising office. Students who applied without an SAT or ACT score will first need to take placement exams in Math, English, and Reading before registering for classes. These tests can be set up remotely through our Testing Center and taken from your home country. It is recommended to register for classes early for best course selection.
What type of on-campus housing does Colorado Mesa University offer?
Colorado Mesa University has 11 different Residence Halls that offer various room types and themed environments to choose from. Please see Residence Life for more information. Students can apply for housing once admitted and are encouraged to apply for housing early for best selection.
Does Colorado Mesa University have International Student Advisors?
Yes. The International Programs and Services Office offers international student advising.
Does Colorado Mesa University have an international student orientation?
Yes. Orientation for new international students is held at the beginning of each semester (in August and January). You will recieve details prior to arrival with orientation and arrival information.
Can international students apply for terms other than fall?
Yes. Students can also apply for the spring semester which begins in January. There are summer sessions as well, but please note that fewer classes are offered during the summer than in the fall/spring semesters.
Do I have to declare an academic major/degree before I begin my classes at Colorado Mesa University?
Colorado Mesa University does not require undergraduate students to officially declare a major prior to arriving on campus. However, a degree of study is required on the I-20 and you may be asked about it at your visa interview. Typically, students will officially declare a major during their second year. See more information on declaring your major.
Can I find out if I'll be admitted to Colorado Mesa University before I submit an application?
Your application must be submitted and complete before an official admission decision can be made.
When and how will I be notified of an admission decision?
Once your application is complete, you will be notified of an admission decision by email. Original admission documents will be sent to you by FedEx along with your I-20 once your shipping address has been verified. Typically, an admission decision will be made within 1-2 weeks of file completion.
Do I need to confirm my plans to attend Colorado Mesa University?
Students can confirm their intent to enroll at Colorado Mesa University by submitting a $50 enrollment deposit (applied towards your tuition bill). Click here for more information on how to do this. Students should also be in touch via email with the International Programs and Services Office about their plans to attend CMU.
Do all documents need to be submitted at the same time?
No. All documents do not need to be submitted at the same time. As soon as your application is received, our office will begin corresponding with you by email regarding any missing documents.
What is considered an official document?
Any document that comes directly from the institution (who originally issued the document) in a sealed envelope is considered official.
Can I submit photocopies of my transcripts?
No. All transcripts must be originals or official certified copies and mailed to the International Programs and Services Office at:
Colorado Mesa University
International Programs and Services
1100 North Avenue
Grand Junction, Colorado 81501
What documents are required for admission?
Please see the Admission Checklist for First-Time Undergraduate students.
Do I have to take the TOEFL/IELTS for admission?
Yes. The only exception to this requirement is if you are from a country whose official language is English or for students who wish to enroll in BridgePathways®, CMU's on-campus intensive English program. BridgePathways students can apply for conditional admission to CMU and submit all application materials except English proficiency. Transfer students transferring from a U.S. college/university will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
Do I have to take the SAT or ACT test?
While not required, it is strongly recommended. Students who do not have an ACT or SAT score will be required to take placement exams in Math, English, and Reading before registering for classes. These tests are set up through our Testing Center. Please note that any NCAA athlete must submit an SAT or ACT score.
I have taken a test of English proficiency. Do I also need to take the ACT or SAT?
The ACT or SAT is strongly encouraged because it measures academic proficiency while the TOEFL and IELTS are tests of English language proficiency. NCAA athletes must submit an ACT or SAT.
I plan to take (or have taken) the ACT/SAT and wondered how the essay writing section will be used in the final admission decision.
The writing section of the SAT/ACT will be reviewed but will not be used as part of the admission process.
What is the approximate cost for international students?
You can view the approximate annual costs for international students on the admission checklist for first-time undergraduate students page or the admission checklist for graduate students page. The amount for personal expenses and books & supplies is considered to be the minimum necessary. All costs are subject to change.
Does Colorado Mesa University provide financial aid for international students?
Yes, CMU offers a merit scholarship for high-achieving international undergraduate students with a 3.0 U.S.-equivalent cumulative GPA (grade point average). The scholarship is valued at $4,000 per semester or $8,000 per academic year. There are several small scholarships available once student is in their 2nd semester of study at CMU. F-1 students must be self-, family-, or home government-sponsored and should not rely solely on scholarships to fund their education.
Am I eligible for an athletic scholarship?
The International Programs and Services Office does not award athletic scholarships. If a student is interested in an athletic scholarship, they must contact the coach of their sport directly. For more information on athletics at Colorado Mesa University, please visit our athletics website.
Can I work while I am studying in the US?
International students are allowed to work on campus on a part-time basis (20 hours/week or less) while school is in session and full-time (40 hours/week) during breaks, as long as the student is able to maintain their F-1 status. Student employment will help with supplemental costs but it is not sufficient to cover all educational expenses. On-campus jobs can only be arranged once a student has arrived on campus and are not guaranteed. The student is responsible for finding an on-campus job and for understanding the restrictions of employment as an F-1 visa holder. There are other opportunities for internships as students progress in their degree of study. Please inquire with the International Programs and Services Office for more information on employment opportunities.
Are there any financial loans to help international students study at Colorado Mesa University?
Colorado Mesa University does not provide loans to international students. Students must be self-, family-, or home government- sponsored.
Do I pay my tuition and housing costs before I begin my study at Colorado Mesa University?
It is not required to pay tuition and housing costs prior to arrival on campus, though it is recommended. A prior deposit for on-campus housing is required. Colorado Mesa University works in conjunction with Flywire by peerTransfer, an efficient and economical payment solution for our international students. You will receive access to a secure, online portal and can select the international payment method that works best for you. To make a payment, go to coloradomesa.peertransfer.com.
What is an I-20?
An I-20 form is the official U.S. government document which certifies that a person is eligible to apply for an F-1 student visa on behalf of Colorado Mesa University. This form is issued once a student is fully accepted and has demonstrated that they have enough financial resources to cover one year of academic study. The I-20 is then used to apply for an F-1 visa at a United States Embassy or Consulate in the student's home country.
How do I get an I-20?
You must first apply, submit all required documents, and be admitted to Colorado Mesa University.
What is an F-1 Student Visa?
The F1 student visa is a nonimmigrant visa which allows international students to enter the U.S. to attend a full course of study at a college, university or language training program.
How do I get an F-1 student visa?
You must first be admitted to Colorado Mesa University and have been issued an I-20. You then schedule an appointment with a U.S. Embassy in your home country for an interview.
What is the Visa Application Process?
Once fully admitted to Colorado Mesa University, a student can begin the visa application process.
- Colorado Mesa University will mail your admissions packet, including the SEVIS I-20 document, to your mailing address in your home country.
- Pay the $200 USD SEVIS fee. More information on how to pay this fee is included in the application packet that is mailed to you.
- Complete the Nonimmigrant Visa Electronic Application, Form DS-160 online. Print and keep the barcode page.
- Find the nearest U.S. Embassy/Consulate by searching www.usembassy.gov/ and follow that U.S. Embassy/Consulate's instructions to schedule an interview for your F-1 student visa and pay the visa application fee. It is important to apply for your student visa as far in advance as possible. See here for more information on the F-1 student visa application process and associated fees.
- Prepare and bring to your visa interview the following items (along with anything else requested by your specific Embassy/Consulate):
- A passport valid for at least six months
- Form I-20
- Colorado Mesa University acceptance letter
- The barcode page of the completed Online Nonimmigrant Visa Electronic Application, Form DS-160
- Two 2"x 2" photographs in the prescribed format. See travel.state.gov for details.
- A receipt for the visa application fee
- A receipt for the SEVIS fee. If you have not received an official receipt in the mail showing payment and you paid the fee electronically, the consulate will accept the temporary receipt printed from your computer. If you do not have a receipt, the consulate may be able to see your payment electronically if your fee payment was processed at least 3 business days before your interview.
- Financial evidence that shows you have sufficient funds to cover your tuition and living expenses for the first year of studies.
- Any information that proves that you will return to your home country after finishing your studies in the U.S. This may include proof of property, family, or other ties to your community.
- Complete the visa application and interview. Every U.S. Embassy/Consulate works from the same set of regulations and laws but will have different procedures for its location. Some will require a face-to-face interview, some will collect the documents and give the student a future appointment date, some will give an appointment and ask the student to come back with all the documentation, and some will conduct the entire process by mail.
- If the visa is approved, you will be given an F-1 visa foil in your passport.
- The visa is a machine-readable foil glued to a page in the passport. It indicates where the visa was issued, the date the visa was issued, the date the visa will expire, the number of entries, the type of visa and the visa number.
Arriving in the United States
- At the port-of-entry (first stop in the U.S.), you will present the following documents to the immigration officer:
- Valid passport with valid visa
- SEVIS I-20
- Any other requested information such as financial documents and/or admission letter
- The immigration officer will:
- Return the valid passport and visa with an immigration admission stamp which will reflect the class of admission (F-1, J-1, M-1, etc), the date of admission, and the admit-to date or D/S (duration of stay)
- Review and return the SEVIS Form I-20
- Return any other previously requested information
Special note regarding Canadians
Canadians do not need a visa to enter the U.S., but at the U.S. port of entry should have available a valid passport, SEVIS I-20, and other documents listed under item #1 above, as well as a receipt of SEVIS fee. If arriving at a land border point, the student will be issued a paper I-94. Keep this arrival card as evidence of legal entry into the U.S.