International FAQ

Who is considered an international student at IHOPU?
An international student is a student who attends IHOPU without United States residency or citizenship, on an M-1 visa.

What is an M-1 visa?
An M-1 visa is a non-immigrant visa that allows a foreign student to enter the United States for the purpose of attending a vocational or non-academic program of study.

What does an M-1 visa allow a foreign student to do in the United States?
An M-1 visa allows a foreign student to enter the United States and enroll full-time in a vocational program of study at an approved school.

How do I obtain an M-1 visa?
Once you have applied, been accepted to IHOPU, and shown proof of financial support, IHOPU will mail you a Form I-20. Once you receive the I-20, you will then pay a fee online to SEVIS (Student Exchange Visitor Information System). At that point you will be able to apply for your visa with the US Embassy or Consulate in your home country. Find your closest US Embassy or Consulate »

How does an M-1 visa affect a spouse and children?
Internationals applying for an M-1 visa can apply for M-2 visas for their dependent spouse and children in the same application. While in the United States on an M-2 visa, the dependent spouse and children are not allowed to work or study, with the exception that an M-2 child may study in an elementary or secondary school. If the spouse or children wish to study while in the United States, they must also apply for and receive an appropriate student visa.

Can an M-1 student work while in the United States?
No, an M-1 student is not legally permitted to work while in the United States.

Must foreign students be able to speak English?
All applicants must be proficient in the English language. IHOPU applicants must have a minimum TOEFL score of 70 on the Internet-based test, or 523 on the paper-based test. IHOPU’s TOEFL school code is 4247.

Applicants without a TOEFL score will be considered for admission if they can provide proof of two years of full-time study in a program with instruction completely in English.

What is IHOPU’s application process for international students?
Learn about the application process for international students »

Which IHOPU programs may a student attend on an M-1 visa?
A foreign student on an M-1 visa can attend all of our schools and four of our five internships—Intro to IHOPKC, Simeon Company, Fire in the Night, and One Thing Internship (we are working toward Hope City Internship being open to international students soon).

Can an international student attend IHOPU on a visitor (B-1/B-2) visa or on the Visa Waiver Program (VWP)?
No. Attending any for-credit program within IHOPU (including the internships) while in the United States on a visitor visa or on the VWP is a violation of visa status.

What is the cost for international students at IHOPU?
View program-specific costs for international students »

The United States Department of Homeland Security (DHS) regulations require documentation that financial resources are available to meet a student’s educational and living expenses while in the United States. Therefore, IHOPU requires a guarantee of financial resources from each applicant who expects to obtain and maintain M-1 student status. Applicants are required to submit financial documentation that equals or exceeds one full year (or six months or three months, if applying for an internship) of expense for the program of study they are interested in pursuing. This financial certification is not dependent on the individual circumstances of applicants, and no adjustments can be made to these legal financial requirements. An I-20 will not be issued until this information is provided.

Estimated living cost for one year is approximately $7,500.

If you are married and your spouse and/or children will be accompanying you to the United States, an additional amount of funds amounting yearly to $6,000 for a spouse and $4,000 per child must be available.

Are international students required to have health insurance?
IHOPU requires that all international students purchase health insurance for the duration of their period of study at IHOPU. Students may purchase health insurance through a provider of their choice, or through IHOPU’s arrangement with ISO, an international student agency. Learn more about ISO »

Can a foreign student attend a three-month or six-month internship with an M-1 visa?
Yes. An M-1 student is initially admitted to the United States for one year, or for the length of the student’s program of study, whichever is shorter. Since our three-month and our six-month internships are shorter than one year, they are eligible.

Track 1 of the Intro to IHOPKC, Fire in the Night, and Simeon Company internships lasts for three months. Track 2 of these three internships lasts an additional three months, but is not required. One Thing Internship is a six-month program.

Acceptance into Track 2 of an internship is not guaranteed, but if you hope to do the second track as well, we recommend that you apply for six months on your visa anyway because it will save you money on government fees and save you time as well.

When should I submit my application?
In order to provide the applicant sufficient time to complete the visa application process, applications must be received by IHOPU no later than three months prior to the program start date.

Is housing provided for international students?
At this time, housing is only provided for Fire in the Night and One Thing Internship programs.