COVID-19: Essential Information
Are there any resale or thrift stores in the area?

Yes, there are several local shops and others in Burlington.  Many people seek out and find good quality clothing and household items at thrift stores and re-use shops as well as at “yard” or “garage” sales and via on-line forums where items are sold or given away.  To see a selection of thrift stores in the local area and near Burlington, please click here.

How can I obtain an official copy of my Middlebury transcript?

The information and the form you need to request an official transcript is found at:

My visa has expired, what do I do?

Learn more about the life of your visa by visiting the Department of State Web page.

Automatic Visa Revalidation: travel to Canada and Mexico on an expired visa.
It is possible to enter the U.S. using an expired visa for trips to Canada, Mexico, and the adjacent islands; this is known as "Automatic Visa Revalidation". You may re-enter the U.S. from these countries using an expired visa as long as the trip was for less than 30 days, and you did not depart Canada/Mexico/the adjacent island during your trip.  Please be aware that individuals from Cuba, Iran, North Korea, Syria, and Sudan are not eligible for Automatic Visa Revalidation. If you are a citizen of one of these countries you must have a valid F-1 or J-1 visa to re-enter the U.S.

Please also be aware that if you have entered one of these countries to apply for a U.S. visa and are denied, you cannot re-enter the U.S. using an expired visa.
When should I have my I-20 signed?

When ISSS signs page 3 of your Form I-20, they verify that you are maintaining status in your current program of study at Middlebury College.  This travel signature is valid for up to one year.  As a student in F-1 visa status, you are responsible for ensuring that you have a current travel signature at all times.  ISSS encourages students to stop in each term to obtain a travel signature to avoid the serious implications of being outside of the U.S. with a lapsed signature.  All you need to do is bring your current Form I-20 and passport to ISSS during drop-in hours. If you have recently updated your major or minor with the Registrar’s office, you should submit a major/minor update form prior to your visit to ISSS.

How often will I get a new I-20?

You will get a new I-20 when you make an update to your SEVIS record, which is reflected in the information posted on your I-20. Common updates which result in a new I-20 include:

  • Declaring a primary major
  • A change in your expected date of graduation
  • Applying for OPT or CPT

Not all of the information in your SEVIS record is reflected on your I-20. Changes such as the following will be updated in your SEVIS record, but will not necessitate a new I-20:

  • Declaring a second major field of study
  • Declaring a minor
  • Change of address

To update your SEVIS record, please see to the "SEVIS Updates" box on the ISSS homepage.

I've lost my I-20. Can I get a new one?
Please contact, and we can create a replacement I-20 for you.

If you are currently in the United States, we will send the I-20 to you via regular mail, or you can come pick it up in person. Please bring your passport and I-94 card with you when to come to pick up your new I-20.

If you are currently outside the United States and need an I-20 to enter the U.S., we may be able to send you a new I-20 if time allows.  If there is not sufficient time to send you a new I-20, you will need to enter the U.S. without it. This will create additional delay for you, as students in F-1 status are expected to have appropriate documents when entering the United States; a valid passport, a valid I-20 with a recent signature, and a valid F-1 visa.  Students traveling without their I-20 will most likely receive an I-515 form, which grants temporary 30-day admission to the U.S. in F-1 status. If you are granted an I-515, you must come to International Student and Scholar Services immediately upon your arrival to campus. You must obtain a new I-20 from ISSS, and submit a series of documents to the U.S. Government within 30 days, or you will be out-of-status.  Being out-of-status will have serious consequences on your immigration status.

If you are travelling without an I-20, the Border Official may suggest you enter the U.S. in tourist status, instead of granting the I-515. Under no circumstances should you enter the U.S. in tourist status. Tourist status does not allow enrollment in courses or employment. If you enter in tourist status and attend classes, you will be in violation of your immigration status. Changing from tourist status back to F-1 status is time-consuming and expensive.

My I-94 card was not taken when I left the U.S. What should I do?
The I-94 record serves as a record of your stay in the U.S. If you enter the U.S. by air or sea, your I-94 record will be created electronically and you can access it at:  You will only receive an I-94 card if you enter the U.S. by land.
If you entered the U.S. by land and have a physical I-94 card and it is not surrendered when you depart the U.S., there may not be a record of your departure, and your record may be flagged as an "overstay". This could complicate your re-entry, or, in a worst-case scenario, prevent a future visit, to the U.S.**
If you have a physical I-94 card and it was not taken when you departed the U.S., you will need to mail the following items to CBP.
  • The original I-94 card. Complete the back of the I-94 card, listing the U.S. Port of Departure (Port), the date of departure (Date), the airline you traveled on (Carrier) and your Flight Number.
  • A letter including these departure details, and explaining why the I-94 card was not surrendered as you departed the U.S.
  • If possible, include proof that you have departed the U.S.; for example, a copy of your airline boarding pass or passport stamps.
Please consult the CBP website for the mailing address and further instructions:

**Please note that if you are going to Canada by land for a trip of less than 30 days, and plan to re-enter the U.S. in the same visa status that you departed, you should not surrender your I-94 card.  You will need to present your I-94 card upon re-entry to the U.S.
I lost my I-94 card. How can I get a new one?

If you enter the U.S. via air or land, your I-94 record is created electronically and can be accessed online at: You should print this record and keep it with your passport and other immigration documents.

If you enter the U.S. via land, you will receive a physical I-94 card that should be stapled inside your passport.

Your I-94 record or card governs your status in the U.S. It is essential that you have an I-94 record or card that accurately displays your current immigration status and the expiration date of your status. 

If you have a physical I-94 card from a land entry and lose that I-94 card, you can go to the Customs and Border Protection (CBP) website to print a record of your arrival to the U.S. at:

If you find that your I-94 record displays the incorrect U.S. immigration status, please contact ISSS immediately: and we will guide you through the process of correcting this.

What documents do I need to re-enter the U.S. in F-1 status?
In order to re-enter the U.S. in F-1 status, you will need three documents:
  • A valid passport (valid 6-months into the future)
  • Your current I-20, which has been signed within the last term 
  • A valid F-1 visa*

*Citizens of Canada and Bermuda do not require a visa stamp in their passport.  If you are a citizen of Canada or Bermuda, you will only need to present a valid passport and current I-20 at the border.

*There is an exception to the requirement of a valid visa to enter the U.S. for trips of less than 30 days to Canada, Mexico, and the adjacent islands. This is called "Automatic Visa Revalidation". 

Students from some countries may have further restrictions.  Please check our International Travel Restrictions Information page for more details.

updated 10/10/2018

How can I apply for a U.S. Social Security Number (SSN)?

You can find details about applying for a Social Security Number on our webpage here:

Can I apply for a U.S. visa outside my country of citizenship?
It is possible to apply for a U.S. visa in a country other than the country from which you hold your passport; this is called applying as a “Third Country National”.  While most Embassies accept applications from Third Country Nationals, not all do so. You should check the website of the Embassy at which you plan to apply for the visa to see if they accept applications from "Third Country Nationals."

There are risks in applying for a visa in a country other than your own. Since the F-1 visa is a nonimmigrant visa, the Embassy Official must determine if you are planning to immigrate to the U.S. and judge the likelihood of your returning to your home country once your program in the U.S. is complete. Officials in other countries will probably not be familiar with your country of citizenship and may not be comfortable in making this determination. Also, if for any reason you are denied a visa, you would not be able to re-enter the U.S., even if your current F-1 visa had not expired. (The visa denial would in effect invalidate your current visa.)  Therefore, we advise students not to apply for a new visa as a Third Country National unless there is a real need to do so.
Can I apply for a new U.S. visa before my old visa has expired?
Perhaps; Some embassies will allow people to apply for a new visa to the U.S. before their current visa has expired, others will not. You should look at the Embassy’s website at which you will apply for the new visa to see what their policy is, and to contact the Embassy directly if they don’t have the information on the website.
Can I apply for a new U.S. visa while I'm in the U.S.?
No. It is not possible to apply for a U.S. while in the U.S. Applications for visas must be made outside the U.S. through a U.S. Consulate.
What do I do if I am stopped by a police officer, a U.S. immigration agent, or a Federal Bureau of Investigations (FBI) officer?

Always make sure to stay calm, ask the officer/agent for identification, and know your rights when you find yourself in this situation. The American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) maintains a detailed guide for individuals who find themselves in this situation.  You can access it at:  It is also available in an easy to carry wallet card format:

Do I need a visa to enter Canada?
To see if you need a visa to enter Canada, please refer to Canada's Citizenship and Immigration web site:
How do I apply for a visa to Canada?
Citizens of many countries need to obtain a tourist visa to enter Canada. You must apply for this visa yourself: International Student and Scholar Services does not apply for you.

The Canadian tourist visa is called a "Temporary Resident Visa". To obtain a Temporary Resident Visa to Canada, you must submit an application to the Canadian Embassy in New York. The visa application process is done by mail.
To determine if you need a visa to enter Canada, and to apply for a Temporary Resident Visa if necessary, click here.
How do I apply for a visa to Mexico?
Information on who needs a visa to enter Mexico, and on how to apply for a tourist visa, can be found at:
(Click on "Visas" on the left hand side of the page, then on "Tourism")

The application process requires an in-person visit to the Boston Consulate. Please contact the Mexican Consulate directly if you have questions regarding the visa process.
How do I apply for a Driver's License?
International students can apply for a Vermont driver's license through the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV). The DMV has a mobile office in Middlebury on certain days of the week at the Addison County Court House (behind Shaw's grocery store).  If this is your first U.S. Driver's license, you will need to take three tests:
1. a written test
2. a driving test
3. a vision test
(Canadian Citizens may turn in their Canadian license for a Vermont license with only the eye test.)

You will need access to a car to take the driving test; if you do not own a car you will need to borrow one.

Please be aware that you cannot take the written test and the driving test on the same day, so you will need to visit the DMV twice to take all of the required tests. You should therefore plan to allow at least two weeks to obtain your Vermont Driver's License.

You should call or email the DMV to schedule an appointment for a written and driving test. Contact information, hours and location for the DMV in Middlebury are listed at:

You access online services, click here.

When you go to the DMV, you will need to present your Middlebury Student ID Card, I-20, passport, and I-94 card. You should be sure that you have had your I-20 signed for this semester!

It is not necessary to have a Social Security Number (SSN) to apply for a Drivers License, however, if you do not have an SSN, the DMV may request that you obtain a letter from the Social Security Administration indicating that you are not eligible for an SSN. If you need a letter to this effect, please contact ISSS, and we will help you to obtain the letter from the Social Security Administration.

Seniors, please note:
When you apply for a driver's license, the expiration date will be listed as the expiration date of your I-20.  If you have applied for Optional Practical Training (OPT), you are able to use your new I-20 from the OPT application to get a driver's license that is valid beyond your graduation date.   You can go through this process before your OPT has been approved by USCIS.

Can I use an International Driving Permit in Vermont?

As an international  student or scholar, you may legally drive on the roads of the State of Vermont for up to one year from your date of arrival if you have an International Driving Permit AND a valid home country license AND if you are from one of the designated countries or territories.  A valid home country license is limited to a licensed driver who is at least 18 years old and limited to a vehicle of the type covered by the license.  For detailed information and to access the list of designated countries, please visit

I'm coming the U.S. for a short period of time. Do I need to use my I-20?

Yes. You should ALWAYS enter the U.S. as a student (using your I-20 and in F-1 status) throughout your entire program at Middlebury College, even if you are only entering the US for a few days.

If you enter the U.S. in any other status (tourist, for example), your F-1 status is “broken”, and your student record ends. This creates a great deal of trouble; you then need to apply for a new SEVIS record, and go through the whole I-20 application process you went through as a First Year student (completing an I-20 application form, showing proof of funds, etc).

In addition, in order to be eligible for off-campus employment authorization (OPT), or to receive payment for a Winter Term Internship (CPT) within the U.S., students must be in continuous F-1 status for an academic year. If your F-1 status is broken, the clock starts over and you are not eligible for off-campus employment or a paid internship until you have been in F-1 status for another year.

Can I transfer credits from the IB or A Levels?
Yes.  Students who have completed the full IB Diploma and earned grades of 6 or 7 for at least three higher-level examinations, are eligible for a maximum of five Middlebury course credits. Students who earned fewer than three scores of 6 or higher on higher level examinations, may receive two course credits for each higher level examination passed with a score of 6 or 7. No credit is awarded for standard level exams.
The other major European examination certificates, such as the French Baccalauréat, Swiss Maturité, Artium Examination, British A levels, and German Abitur, are normally considered to have a value of five credits if students receive scores that indicate excellent performance.
Students who receive such credit may not then receive credit for Middlebury introductory courses in subjects covered on the examination.
The credit transfer process is handled by the Registrar. Please contact the Registrar's Office for the proper forms to transfer credit to Middlebury College,

International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS)

Service Building - Second Floor
14 Old Chapel Road
Middlebury College
Middlebury, VT 05753
Phone: 802 443-5858