Begin your search of possible U.S. colleges or universities, keeping in mind your desired field of study, size and location of school, and level of religious observance. Utilize:
Yeda Plus Counselors
Establish a list of 10-12 prospective schools
Prepare for and take the TOEFL and SAT.
12-14 months before U.S. study (June-August)
Request application forms and information from prospective schools, or access this information and the necessary forms online.
Narrow your choices to one or two institutions that you would like to attend but that may not accept you (“reach schools”), one or two which you feel would accept you, and one or two where you are quite certain to gain admission (“safety schools”).
Identify two or three teachers or other people who know (e.g. Army commander, former employer) you well and ask them to write references for you. Provide them with a summary of your academic/extracurricular background and tell them which aspects you want them to address.
Ask the schools you have attended to prepare your transcripts. Any copies of the transcript you submit to a university must be certified with the official seal of the school that issued it, or certified by another authorized official. Transcripts must be translated into English, and the translation must also be certified (notarized) Yeda Plus provides this service. The schools send the original and the student sends the notarized and translated copy.
Obtain a copy of your Bagrut and have it translated and notarized.
If your previous TOEFL or other exam scores were not satisfactory, take the test again.
Take SAT II subject tests (not all schools require these, it is important to research what is specifically required or recommended for international students). Not every school will accept Hebrew as a language SAT II if it is your native language.
11 months before U.S. study (September)
Review the applications you have received and note the deadlines for each institution.
Consider benefits of early admission/decision options and corresponding deadlines.
Note requirements for need-based and merit-based financial aid and submit related information.
Begin exploring external scholarship resources. Apply well in advance of deadlines. Yeda Plus can assist with this
Write your application essays and statement of purpose. Have these checked for content and clarity. Yeda Plus provides this service
10 months before U.S. study (October)
Type or fill in the original applications by hand. Online is cleaner and easier to make changes, but you should do what you feel most comfortable with. If you have beautiful calligraphy, this may impress someone!
Make a checklist of the items required for submission with each application. These may very slightly from one college to the next, but they usually include:
The nonrefundable application fee; usually a dollar check that can be cashed at a bank in the United States.
Required financial statements, such as notarized financial forms from the institution, bank letters, etc.
The completed application form.
Your essay or statement of purpose.
Some Schools require “supplements’ particularly in the arts, this may include a portfolio of your work
Keep copies of the completed applications and essays, and mail the originals to the institutions in the United States. Observe the deadlines!
Make sure your recommendations and school transcripts have been sent. Since the recommendations need to be sent by the recommender and the original transcripts by this school, it is very important to follow up with this.
Check to make certain that you have requested that your test results for the TOEFL, SAT, and SAT II exams have been sent to each of the universities you have applied.
Retake SAT if necessary.
Wait to hear from the institutions which you have applied:
Upon receipt of your completed application, the university or college will probably begin a correspondence with you. Some institutions may request more information or resubmission of something you have already sent. Unless there is some delay with your application, you should expect a decision by April or May.
3 months before U.S. study (May/June)
· Get a visa application form from the U.S. embassy or consulate nearest you. When you apply for a visa, the consular officer may want to see the following:
o An I-20 or IAP-66 from an accredited college or university.
o Original documents evidencing your educational credentials for the previous four years.
o The scores of tests you have taken, such as the TOEFL and SAT exams.
o Financial documents
· Consider and obtain health insurance packages. Yeda Plus recommends “The Health Embassy” They are able to give comparison of coverage to any American University