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International Admissions


The Graduate Gateway Program provides a full course of study and is considered a full-time program by the U.S. government. Upon successful completion of the Graduate Gateway Program, students receive a Graduate Gateway Certificate of Achievement. The Graduate Gateway Program is administered by American University in Washington, DC, a prominent institution of higher learning that was established by an Act of Congress in 1893. American University is accredited through the Middle States Association of Colleges and Secondary Schools, an authority recognized by the U.S. Department of Education.


 In addition to meeting the other requirements for Graduate Gateway admissions, international students must submit official test scores from either the TOEFL, IELTS, Pearson Test of English –Academic (PTE) exam or Kansas AEC Test of English Proficiency.

Minimum scores should be 100 TOEFL IBT, 600 TOEFL PBT, 7.0 IELTS, 68 PTE Acad, or Kansas Band 2 or Higher. This requirement can be waived for applicants who have received a bachelor's degree from an accredited U.S. college or university.


All international students (excluding U.S. citizens and permanent residents) accepted to the Graduate Gateway Program must apply for a J-1 Exchange Visitor Visa unless the student currently resides in the United States on another legal visa (e.g., A-1/A-2, G-4, H-1). Students are not eligible to attend this program on a B-1/B-2 or an F-2 visa, or through the visa waiver program. Students from formally affiliated member schools will enter the United States on J-1 exchange visas.


To begin the visa application process, the U.S. government requires you to show financial ability to support your program of study and living expenses while in the United States. A letter from a financial institution indicating available funds in the required amount must be submitted immediately after your acceptance to the program. Please email to request sample bank letters and financial support statements. Once all financial documents have been received by the Graduate Gateway Program, the international student director processes your paperwork and submits the financial documents to the International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) department at American University. ISSS will evaluate the submitted documents and issue the immigration documents necessary to obtain a J-1 visa or potentially extend an F-1 visa, on a case-by-case basis.


Please contact Lana Knox, Assistant Director of Bridge Programs, at 001-202-895-4859.