Bringing Your Family
Issues to Consider
Bringing a spouse and/or children to join you in San Angelo is an exciting option. It can help you succeed in your studies, ease stress and bring family unity and comfort to your household. Furthermore, it can be an everlasting memory of happiness and joy.
Nonetheless, many students have met some unexpected difficulties. Potential causes of disruption are language barriers, cultural differences, idle time for spouse and children, and a lack of cohesiveness within the environment.
To assist you and your family in fully understanding the consequences of living in the U.S., the Center for International Studies recommends you answer the following questions to the best of your abilities.
- Where will you live with your family?
- How will your spouse and children get around (transportation)?
- What will your spouse do during the day?
- How will you access information for your family’s needs?
- What is the English proficiency of each family member? How do you plan to address their language needs?
- How will your experience as a married couple be different here than in your own country?
- What will be the biggest source of stress on your marriage?
- How will you deal with the isolation your spouse and children may feel without grandparents, aunts, uncles and other extended family members?
- Where will you send your children to school?
- What type of stress will your children experience in school, in a new country?
- How will you deal with cultural shock individually and as a family?
Procedures for Dependent Visas
Students who choose to bring a spouse and/or children to the U.S. during their study period must apply for a dependent visa/visas. This type of visa is called an F-2 visa.
The Center for International Studies can assist you with the necessary documents to apply for a dependent visa. The process for obtaining a dependent visa and the documents required are similar to those required for an F-1 visa.
Dependents must receive a dependent I-20 from the Center for International Studies to apply for an F-2 visa. The documents required are:
- Passport biodata page copy (for each dependent).
- Proof of finances ($3,000 for spouse, $1,500 per child). These finances are in addition to the finances shown for the F-1 student visa.
- Proof of medical/health insurance (recommended).
Dependent I-20s should be discussed with the Center for International Studies staff at the time you apply for admission.