International Services

International Programs and Services

Welcome to Central Piedmont Community College! The International Programs and Services office is committed to supporting the academic and personal growth of our F-1 international students. Whether you need assistance with immigration related issues, resources at the college, or want to learn more about the Charlotte community, we are here to help.

Central Piedmont has a large international student community, with students from 163 different countries. Over 5,000 of our students were born outside the United States. This means that Central Piedmont has the programs and services to help international students be successful in their studies. 

Charlotte, North Carolina is the home to Central Piedmont's six full-service college campuses. The climate in Charlotte is pleasant, the mountains are less than two hours away, and ocean beaches are three hours’ drive. As a growing city (about 1.6 million people in the metropolitan area), Charlotte is also home to a variety of professional sports teams, a thriving arts scene, and a busy international airport. This is a great place to live and to study.

Your success is our goal, and our staff is available to answer your questions during your academic journey in the United States.


The International Programs and Services Staff

Applying for a Student Visa

Here you will find the admissions requirements necessary to obtain a student (F-1) visa to attend Central Piedmont. Please read these materials carefully. Fill out the forms accurately and be sure to include a signed affidavit of support when you mail the information to the international services office.

  • Issuing Your I-20

    1. Complete the enrollment steps for international students.
    2. Once your application to Central Piedmont is complete, we will issue your I-20. For students who will be entering the United States for the first time to study, the following information will be helpful. Visit Study in the States for helpful information about applying for a visa and maintaining your student status.
    3. Pay the I-901 SEVIS fee online. Be sure to print copies of your I-901 fee payment receipt for your records.
    4. Contact your local U.S. consulate or embassy.

    Information and instructions how to apply for a student visa can be found on the U.S. embassy or consulate website where you will be applying.

    • Schedule Visa Interview

      After you receive an I-20 form from Central Piedmont, follow the U.S. embassy/consulate’s instructions to schedule an interview for your F-1 student visa. It is important to apply for your student visa as far in advance as possible. Many consulates recommend that appointments be made no more than 90 days from the intended date of travel, but some can make earlier arrangements for interviews. IMPORTANT: Please note the earliest admission date on your I-20. This is the earliest date you may enter the U.S. once your visa is granted. You may be refused entry into the United States if you attempt to arrive before the EARLIEST ADMISSION DATE listed on your SEVIS I-20 form. You must be in the U.S. NO LATER THAN the PROGRAM START DATE on your I-20.

      Prepare and bring to your visa interview the following items as well as others that are noted on the U.S. embassy website.

      • a passport valid for at least six months
      • form I-20 signed under the STUDENT ATTESTATION section
      • school admission letter (included with your I-20)
      • completed visa applications (DS-160)
      • two 2”x2” photographs in the prescribed format
      • a receipt for the visa application fee
      • a receipt for the I-901 SEVIS fee
      • financial evidence that shows you have sufficient funds to cover your tuition and living expenses during the period you intend to study (the total amount from the I-20)
      • any information that proves that you will return to your home country after finishing your studies in the U.S.; this may include proof of property, family, or other ties to your community


    • Sponsored Programs

      A non-U.S. citizen who is lawfully admitted to the US with a visa, and who lives in North Carolina, may be sponsored by a NC non-profit entity and be eligible for in-state tuition sponsorship. For information on NC Non-profit sponsorships, contact Central Piedmont's Sponsored Programs Office.

    • Academic (For-Credit) English

      The Academic English as a Second/Foreign Language (ESL/EFL) curriculum prepares nonnative speakers of English to function successfully in institutions of higher education in the United States. Coursework provides knowledge and practice of academic reading, grammar, listening/speaking, and composition. Among other skills, students learn to make presentations to groups, write a research paper, and take notes from classroom lectures. Attention is also paid to the student's cultural awareness, particularly that of the academic environment. You will earn college credit for academic ESL/EFL courses. Please note that students on F-1 visas cannot take ESL through College and Career Readiness.

    • Housing

      Central Piedmont does not have student housing on campus. However, there are many housing options close to each campus. We have provided some options that aren't affiliated or endorsed by Central Piedmont but were selected by students.

      Apartments Near Central Campus

      Apartment Search allows you to search for apartments near any Central Piedmont campus.

    • Furnishings

      Already have a place to live but need furnishings? Ikea is here for you as well as furniture rental options through CORT.

    • Health Insurance

      Healthcare can be very expensive in the United States, which is why having healthcare coverage is important. Your I-20 estimated the cost of health insurance coverage for a year. Your actual cost will depend on the amount and type of coverage that is right for you. Although Central Piedmont cannot recommend a health insurance provider, we have provided a few resources for you as you research health insurance options.