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Student Going Global



This visa category is created under the North America Free Trade Agreement and is therefore limited to citizens of Canada or Mexico. There are restrictions as to what type of positions can qualify for this visa category. When a Cal State L.A. Department or other unit wishes to employ a Canadian or Mexican national, this visa category can be an option.

The following eligibility requirements have to be met:

  1. The profession has to be on the list of qualifying positions for TN status, as set forth in Appendix 1603.D.1 to Annex 1603 of the NAFTA.
  2. The position requires the individual to have at least a baccalaureate degree or appropriate credentials demonstrating status as a professional.
  3. The individual possesses the requisite educational background and experience for that position.

The TN visa can be approved initially for up to three years with extensions for three year increments. There is no cumulative maximum so long as the TN visa holder can show the employment is temporary.

Sponsor Package:

After a foreign national has been offered a position at the University, the Hiring Authority should prepare and submit the Sponsor Package to the International Office.

The Sponsor Package includes:

  • University Sponsor of a Non-Immigrant Employee Request
  • Non-Immigrant Employee Bio-Data Form
  • Resume/C.V. of non-immigrant employee
  • Copy of job description
  • Copy of offer letter
  • Copy of highest academic degree certificate(s) or diploma(s)
  • Required license for the position (if any)

Upon receipt of this package, the International Office will issue a TN Support Letter to the non-immigrant employee. He/She will then take the letter along with the package of supporting documents prepared by the International Office to apply for the TN visa.

Mexican citizens will submit the package to the U.S. Embassy/Consulate and apply for the TN visa.

Canadian citizens are not required to obtain a visa stamp for entry into the U.S. They will show the packet of documents prepared by the International Office to the port-of-entry officers and apply for entry at that time.

Processing Timeline:

This is an estimated timeline for a non-immigrant employee outside of the U.S. Other applications and/or documents may be required if the non-immigrant is applying for a change of status inside the U.S. It will change from case to case.

1. Sponsor Package - 1 week to 1 month


Below is a list of fees involved in the TN petition if the non-immigrant is outside the U.S. Other fees will be assessed if the non-immigrant is applying for a change of status inside the U.S.

Visa application fee


Dependents are spouse and children under 21 years of age. They will be issued a TD visa for their stay in the U.S.

They are not permitted to work. They are eligible to study part-time or full-time as long as the educational program does not include employment (e.g., research assistantship).



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Last Update: 03/4/2014