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Passports and Visas

Getting your passport up to date is extremely important, since it is your ticket out of the country and is often required for visa processing. This can be a complicated and time consuming process. Consequently, we urge you to familiarize yourself with revised passport laws since currently renewal can take several weeks even with expensive expediting fees. In many cases, your passport should be valid 3 to 6 months beyond the end date of your program.

It is important to plan ahead and apply for a passport or renew a current passport as soon as possible. You can apply for a passport through most Post Offices, including the Post Office on Acklen Ave. behind the Pancake Pantry. U.S. citizens can check these sites for more information:

Official Passport Information Website
Passport fees Current passport processing times (US Department of State)
US Postal Service passport application information page
US Postal Service Passport application office locator
US Department of State passport expediting page

If you are not a U.S. citizen, you will need to check with your home country's passport issuing office for more information

Some programs will require you to apply for a visa to study. Visa applications require items such as a valid passport, application forms, personal financial & health information, and more. U.S. citizens can check entry and exit requirements for their country of interest from the following page:

Country-Specific Visa Information

If you must apply for a visa, you will receive guidance on this process after you have been approved by our office and accepted to your program.

All students studying abroad in France for more than 90 days are required to go through the visa process.  This process begins with CampusFrance, an online registration process from the French government.

In the link at the bottom of this page you will find a step-by-step guide for completing the CampusFrance online forms.

Vanderbilt students attending VIF: You will complete the CampusFrance process together in a mandatory pre-departure session which is detailed in your approval/acceptance process.  Unless instructed otherwise, do not complete your CampusFrance registration outside of this meeting.

Non-Vanderbilt students & Vanderbilt students attending Sciences Po: Use the guide linked below to complete the online process.  Do not use Safari or Chrome browsers as they are incompatible with CampusFrance and will prevent you from completing your registration.  As soon as it is available, the Global Education Office will send you a copy of your acceptance letter for you to send to the French Emabssy to complete your CampusFrance file.

To complete the online registration you will need the following items:

  • your passport number
  • an electronic copy of a brief resume.  This should not be longer than a page – the bullet points of your education and most recent three work experiences (jobs/internships/etc.) 
  • an electronic copy of your study goals for your time abroad.  This should be no more than one quarter page single spaced in length – what you hope to gain academically from next semester 
  • an electronic copy of your professional plans.  Again, no more than one quarter page single spaced about what you want to be when you grow up and hopefully how studying in France fits into that.  
  • an electronic copy of your overall goals.  No more than one quarter page single spaced on what you hope to get from the VIF experience in general.
Instructions: CampusFrance Guide