International Students

 

We are honored that you may be considering moving to the United States to study at RTS Orlando. Much of the information you need is found on other pages of the website. However, we have posted an International Supplement in pdf format which should aid you in answering questions related to the application process as well as checklists for the application and arrival processes. Please download the documents and read them carefully before you begin the application process. Thank you, again, for considering RTS Orlando!

Applicants for whom English is a second language must submit a TOEFL score of not less than 550 for the Master of Arts and Master of Divinity degree programs, and not less than 600 for the Master of Arts in Counseling and Doctor of Ministry degree programs. When applicable, master's level international students with TOEFL scores greater than 550, but less than 600, shall attend additional language training before beginning their program of academic study in the Fall term.

International applicants must also provide an educational history as well as documentation of financial support by submitting the International Student Application Supplement. International students who plan to apply for financial assistance from RTS should begin the application process at least 18 months before their intended Fall term of enrollment.   



INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS CHECKLISTS

Applying to RTS

•  Fill out Application
•  Fee ($75)
•  Testimony Essay in Application
•  Reason Essay in Application
•  Academic, Pastoral and General References
•  Official Transcripts: Undergraduate and Graduate
•  Recent Photograph
•  If applying to the MA Counseling, also Confidential Questionnaire
•  Letter from home church stating their personal support of your pursuit of seminary and specifying any financial support
•  International Student Application Supplement
•  TOEFL (213 computer, 550 written, 80 new test; School Code: 9771)
•  Demonstration of at least 50% of necessary finances for 1 year of study.  See International Student Application Supplement for more information on proving finances.
•  This is not required, but we recommend reviewing An Overview of Applying for an F-1 Visa
•  Send Application materials to the Applications Coordinator at applications.orlando@rts.edu.

BEFORE YOU ARRIVE

•  Submit form I-901 (link to https://www.fmjfee.com/i901fee/) and pay fee.
•  Demonstrate 100% of necessary finances for 1 year of study to RTS.  See International Student Application Supplement for more information on proving finances.
•  Provide DSO with copy of your passport
•  Read Travel Tips and Arrival Procedures
•  Read International Student’s Guide to Moving to Florida

Housing

•  It is your responsibility to find housing. This may take up to 2 months before arriving to arrange and you may have to stay in temporary housing when you first arrive. Many international students report that housing is the most difficult part of the transition to arrange.
•  Join the Google Group RTS Orlando International Community for help finding roommates or housing.
•  Email the Community Relations Director at dveldkamp@rts.edu for a list of housing options.
•  Several international students have lived at Alafaya Woods Apartments or Oviedo Grove Apartments. Both are close to RTS
•  Visit our Housing page for more information.

U.S. Customs Service

Ask at a U.S. consulate in your home country for a copy of United States Customs Hints for Visitors, which explains import tax regulations and may prevent unnecessary customs duty expense.

Baggage

The Admissions office cannot accept or store baggage. You may ship packages to your seminary address, but you must arrive before the packages.
•  If you must ship unaccompanied baggage, you should deal with an agent in your country who can handle shipment to Orlando and has a corresponding agent in the U.S. to help check your baggage through customs. Be sure to find out the name of that individual or of the U.S. brokerage firm with which the U.S. agent deals. To protect yourself against loss, insure your shipments for “all risk” coverage. Be sure that all shipments will arrive on a date after you arrive on campus.

Canceling Your Plans

We hope that nothing will happen to prevent you from attending RTS, but if your plans change and you cannot enroll, please notify the Admissions office immediately.

 

UPON ARRIVAL

Reporting to the Admissions Office

When you arrive in Orlando, you must come to the Admissions office and meet with Tim Trouten by the date on item number 5 on your I-20. Please bring your:
     1. Passport and I-94 card
     2. I-20
We are required to check these documents to confirm your status in the U.S. We will also provide you with important orientation materials.

Transportation

If you do not have other means of transportation available immediately, you may want to rent a car until you are able to purchase a car. A car is a NECESSITY in the U.S.