Instructions for Completing the Financial Certification Form
Before you can be issued a Certificate of Eligibility for a student visa (I-20 or DS-2019), you must first complete UC's Financial Certification Form. When documenting financial support you must demonstrate that you have financial support for all years of study it will take you to complete your degree. On average, an Associate degree takes two years to complete, a Masters degree takes three years, a Bachelors degree takes five years, and a Doctoral degree is completed in six years, unless noted otherwise. Also, some programs such as the one year MBA program or the three year masters program in Architecture have different lengths. Check the estimated annual expenses for your college, level, and program to determine the amount you have to certify.
If a spouse, parent or any other person will be providing room and boarding, please complete the Financial Certification Form and have it signed and notarized.
There is no deadline for submitting financial certification forms to UC International Services, but you will not be issued a Certificate of Eligibility until they are properly received. You should submit your financial documents as soon as possible, but no sooner than 6 months prior to your start date at UC.
Determine the Amount to Document
Check the estimated annual expenses for your college, level, program, and/or length of study to determine the amount you need to complete your studies. Funds for the first year of study must be documented and available. Funds for subsequent years of study must be attainable as demonstrated by income from employment or investments. This typically occurs when a sponsor (family or friend) is involved. If using personal funds (meaning money that appears on documents in your name) for any part of support the student must have the personal funds for all years of study. For example, a 6-year doctoral student who states that he or she will use $10,000 of personal funds for support would have to have $10,000 x 6 ($60,000) in order to be issued an I-20 or DS-2019. Personal funds can’t be earned, the student either has the funds or doesn’t have the funds.
Understand the Exact Worth of your Award(s)
Financial awards given to you by the University, including scholarships or assistantships, count towards proving the necessary financial support and can be subtracted from the amount of funding you need to demonstrate. The amount of the award should be detailed in your letter of admission. Make sure you understand the exact worth of your award before you complete the Financial Certification Form. Funding for subsequent years of study can not be based on your hope to obtain increased funding from the University. Only current levels of support can be counted for subsequent years of study.
Download & Print the Financial Certification Form
If you received a Financial Certification Form by mail, you can skip this step.
Complete Side One
- Personal Information
Print your family/surname and your first/given name. It should be consistent with your passport.
- Country of Birth
Country in which you were born. Date of Birth: Month/day/year you were born.
- Country of Citizenship
Country in which you are a citizen.
- Are You Currently in the United States?
Indicate yes or no. If yes, indicate your immigration status. If no, leave the immigration status line blank.
- Email Address & Telephone
Provide your electronic mail address and telephone number.
- Mailing Address
List the address where you want the I-20 or DS-2019 mailed. Include street number, city, province, state/country and zip code.
- Funding Information
The amount of funding must be equal to or greater than the amount indicated on your estimated annual expense sheet or no I-20 or DS-2019 will be issued. Funds can come from a combination of sources (University, personal funds, sponsors, etc.).
- Personal Funds
Your own money in a personal bank account(s). If personal funds are being used as support, enough funds for all years of study must be available.
Any person (family member or friend) who will be providing you with financial support.
Any scholarship, assistantship, fellowship or another form of support being given by the University of Cincinnati to you. Make sure you understand how much you have actually been awarded. Check with your admitting department if you are confused about your scholarship amount.
Typically reserved for funds being provided by an employer, home government, or an international organization.
- Subsequent Years of Study
No I-20 or DS-2019 will be issued unless support for all years of study can be provided. The first year of funds must be documented and available. Funds for subsequent years of study must be indicated and attainable (unless personal funds are being used, then funds for all years must be available). For example, if a sponsor promises to support you for a particular dollar amount for all years of study, the amount indicated must be documented and available for the first year of study and the sponsor willing and able to provide the same amount of support for all subsequent years of study as documented with income that will be earned or other investments. Average time to degree is:
Degree Years of Study Associate 2 years Bachelor's 5 years Master’s (Most Programs) 3 years Doctorate 6 years Juris Doctorate (Law) 3 year
- Signature & Date
Sign and date the form.
Complete Side Two
- Affidavit of Sponsorship
If a sponsor is providing any financial support this section must be completed. The sponsor must indicate name, relationship to the applicant (i.e., father, uncle, etc.) and address. The sponsor must indicate all persons whom they are financially responsible for and sign the form. If multiple sponsors are being used, each sponsor must complete an Affidavit of Sponsorship.
- Affidavit of Oath
The signature must be certified (sealed/stamped) by a designated official. In the U.S. such officials are called Notary Publics. In other countries a notary could be a bank official, a government employee, a lawyer, accountant, etc. The form will not be accepted if it is not notarized and sealed.
- Official Certification of Support
Amounts of support must be documented and attached. Funds for the first year of study must be documented and available. A clear indication that support for subsequent years of study can be reasonably attained MUST BE documented. This is best accomplished by using employment/salary letters, investments, tax returns or other assets.
Prepare All Documents
Any financial certification made by a sponsor must have a notary seal affixed to the sponsors signature or the form will not be accepted. A notary seal is an official stamp certifying that the person signing the form is the sponsor. A notary seal can be obtained in any country, although the formal name may be a notary. Lawyers, bankers, police officers and other government officials typically have the authority to make such certifications. In some countries (especially China) such officials may not stamp or seal the Affidavit of Sponsorship because it is written in English. It is acceptable in such instances to send a form appropriate from your home country with the appropriate seals instead of the UC International Services Financial Certification Form.
Make sure both sides of the form are completed and properly certified. Attach any documents that help show your sources of support including bank statements, letters of employment for sponsors, investments, etc. Your financial documents do not have to be submitted in U.S. dollars, although it is helpful that any document you submit in foreign currency contains the U.S. dollar equivalency. It is perfectly acceptable to submit documents in foreign currency such as RMB, Rupees, or Euro. However, supporting financial documents must be submitted in English or have an English translation attached. Keep the original documents to supply to the U.S. embassy when you apply for the student visa.
Upload documents through iStart
The Financial Certification form should be returned to UC International Services, not your department. Follow the instructions below to upload your completed form to us.
- Create a single PDF or JPEG file with scanned copies of all documents you will be uploading.
- Do not upload other formats such as RAR, etc.
- Do not upload multiple PDF or JPEG files to your email.
- The student's name should appear somewhere in the name of the PDF file. For example, "Namir Sadik 2011 Documents.pdf" is an appropriate filename for a student named Namir Sadik. Name your PDF file accordingly.
- Upload the PDF using the Sources of Support eForm found at https://ibearcatsglobal.uc.edu. Click on the Limited iStart Services link and then the Admission and Orientation link. Please keep the original documents for your visa interview.