It takes approximately 1 week for us to review and issue an I-20. Please note that if your application is incomplete, it will take longer. We process I-20 applications in the order that we receive them. We give priority to students who have submitted a *complete* application. OIPS will e-mail you once we send your I-20. If you have not received your I-20 within 4 weeks of the e-mail, please contact us.
We review documents and prepare I-20 forms on a full-time basis every working day. Our highest priorities are accuracy and promptness. We understand that time is very important and there are many details that you must coordinate before beginning your studies in the Unites States, such as arranging a visa appointment and planning travel.
Because receiving an I-20 form is essential for visa application, some students inquire daily about our progress in processing their documents. If enough students do this, we must spend all of our time replying to their questions and we have little time remaining to process I-20 forms. We want to be available to assist you. It is best to send your questions by e-mail as advisors are not always available by phone. Please allow two business days before following up.
2. I only use one name for personal reasons. How should I complete the paperwork?
We understand that for personal reasons, you have chosen to take no surname. We apologize for the inconvenience this will cause you in the beginning; however, most U.S. databases require a minimum of two names. Mason does not issue I-20s with no surname. Many students in this situation choose to simply separate their names, but keep them in the same order. You do not need to change your passport - simply get an official note in your passport that your name can be read in two ways.
3. Can I send you a credit card to express mail my documents?
OIPS is unable to accept credit cards from students for the purpose of express mailing your I-20. We understand that time is important and have the below options available:
Eship Global. We use eShipGlobal to send immigration documents abroad once you have pre-paid the shipping costs. Below are the instructions:
Enter "George Mason University" or Select "District of Columbia DC."
Click on "Office of International Programs and Services."
Enter the address where you want your I-20 to be mailed. (Student ID = G00123456)
Once you have entered your address information, click on "Ship/Quote."
On the next screen, verify that your address is correct. Input your credit card information and select "Confirm Shipment."
Regular mail is included in the cost of your application fee
It may take up to 5 weeks for delivery
Trusted Friend or Family in the U.S.
Provide the full name and mailing address of the person to whom you would like us to mail your I-20. This person can than send your documents to you by express mail.
4. I left a phone message and have not heard back. It has been more than two days.
Did you include your full name, with a spelling of your family name and/or your G number? If not, the advisor may not be able to review your student record in order to answer your question. OIPS is unable to return international phone calls. We recommend e-mail as the best way to communicate with us: firstname.lastname@example.org
5. I canít access patriot web. What do I do?
Did you use the Correct Pin?
Confirm you are using the correct pin number which is your birthday in this format: mmddyy Ė e.g., 120189 for December 01, 1989.
Are You Locked out?
If you locked yourself out by typing the wrong pin 3 or more times, you will need to request a pin reset. You can do that by going to the patriotweb site and clicking on the log in link: https://patriotweb.gmu.edu/pls/prod/twbkwbis.P_WWWLogin Just above the User ID, you will see a link for: Patriot Web Login Help. A window will come up with several options. Click on the link for the Patriot Web PIN Reset Request Form.
Print out the form and fill it in completely. You can fax it to 703-993-3347 or scan and e-mail it to: email@example.com.
Be sure to include a copy of your photo ID. Passport information page is ok
Contact your admissions department to make sure that they unlocked your access.
6. I canít get my visa in time to come to GMU. How do I defer my attendance?
Contact your admissions department. They will guide you through the steps of deferring your admission.
7. The consular officer told me that they sent my visa application for a security clearance. Can you check the status of my visa or expedite it?
Security clearances are required by the U.S. government for some students. Universities are not permitted to inquire about your case or the additional clearance. If your planned travel date passes and you need to discuss late arrival or deferral to a future semester, please notify OIPS and contact your admissions office for assistance.
8. I went for my interview and they havenít returned my passport and visa yet Ė can I come to campus late?
Maybe. Each department has different policies. Contact your academic department or admissions office to discuss your situation. US Immigration officers will not permit you to enter after the date in section 5 of your I-20 form unless OIPS makes a special exception in the SEVIS system. We will do this if you obtain an e-mail or letter from your Department Chair (not from your advisor). Forward the approval letter to OIPS so that we can update your arrival date in your SEVIS record. Additionally, you should keep a copy for your records in case an immigration officer asks to see it when you enter the U.S.
9. I donít think I should pay out of state tuition Ė Iíve been living in the US for some time. Who should I contact to correct this?
George Mason University
Office of Admissions
4400 University Drive, MSN 3A4
Fairfax VA 22030
213 Johnson Center
George Mason University
12. Iím interested in financial aid. What opportunities are there at George Mason?
Financial aid provided by the US federal government is only available to US citizens and permanent residents. Graduate students may receive assistantship or grant funding, but these opportunities are limited. Check with your academic department.