International Grad Student Information

No matter where you are from or where you are going, your EMU degree will prepare you for a purposeful life and a meaningful career. Our students represent diverse backgrounds from all over the world, including approximately 100 international students like you. There are over 15 graduate degree programs that will challenge you to pursue your passion.

Our campus is located in the peaceful Shenandoah Valley of Virginia in the United States. Nestled against the Shenandoah National Park resides Harrisonburg, Virginia. Framed by mountain streams, breathtaking vistas, and bountiful farmland, yet only 2.5 hours from Washington DC, Harrisonburg is a hidden gem for nature lovers, food enthusiasts, music seekers, and families alike. Nicknamed "The Friendly City,"  Harrisonburg has the local charm of a small town with the variety of a large city. A bustling downtown features unique restaurants, shops, local artists, live music, and green spaces. As a refugee resettlement area, Harrisonburg is a microcosm of national and world issues. This area is rich with diverse experiences, cultures, and dreams. Come visit and you'll soon call Harrisonburg home.  

Applying to EMU

Are you ready to take the first step in the admissions process? Apply today! We are always accepting applications. We encourage you to apply well in advance so that all steps can be completed on time.

Transcripts: Official transcripts are required as part of admission. Students can request transcripts directly through their university to be mailed or emailed to EMU.

Send official transcripts from each college or university attended to Graduate and Professional Programs at EMU, Campus Center 230, 1200 Park Rd., Harrisonburg, VA  22802, or, electronically to

Transcripts must be in English or accompanied by a certified English translation.  Students are required to have non-US transcripts evaluated by an academic transcript evaluating agency, such as World Education Services (WES). 

Test Scores: Applicants whose first language is not English must submit scores for either the TOEFL, IELTS, or Duolingo test (Institutional code: 5181).

International students studying in-person, must take a full time course load (9 credit hours each semester) due to the requirements of the visa. 

Students who are willing and able to complete a program from their home country can complete any of the Master's Degrees or Graduate Certificates we offer. 

*Our Education, Business and MSN programs are not currently available for in person international admits.

What programs are available for international students? 

Visa Process

Don't let the visa process slow you down from pursuing your dreams. Our experienced admissions counselors will walk you through the visa process step by step. Simply apply to begin the first step!

Getting Your I-20 and Obtaining a Visa

An I-20 is the form that EMU produces which allows the student to apply for a visa at a U.S. Embassy. Before EMU can issue the I-20, the student must take the following steps:

  • Complete the admissions application file and receive an offer of admission from the university. 
  • Complete the financial certification form and provide supporting documents such as bank statements and letters of sponsorship, if applicable.
  • Pay any deposit if required by the program.
  • Pay the SEVIS fee - $350 payment (also known as the I-901 fee for a SEVIS ID)

What to bring to your visa interview

The student should bring the following documents to the visa interview:

  • Completed I-20 Form
  • Receipt of SEVIS payment
  • Acceptance letter
  • Offer of financial aid (if applicable)
  • Financial documents which prove the student’s ability to support themself while in the U.S.
  • Evidence that the student intends to return to their home country upon completion of their studies (information about family members who live in the home country, property owned, etc.)
  • Academic transcripts and test scores

The student should also be prepared to describe their career goals and why they chose EMU.

Financial Aid/Scholarships

There is no federal aid available for international students. International students are encouraged to seek sponsorship through family members or organizations with which they are associated. Programs within the Seminary and Center for Justice and Peacebuilding offer internal scholarships for which international students can apply. You must indicate interest on your application before submitting.  

What does it cost? 

In addition to tuition fees, there are additional fees you  must consider when coming to graduate school: books, rent, living expenses, food, miscellaneous expenses and health insurance. 

Expense Single
Tuition: CJP  $771 per credit hour

For 18-30 hours per year: $13,878 - $23,130

Tuition: Biomed $925 per credit hour

For 18-30 hours per year: $16,830 - $28,050

Tuition: Counseling

$665 per credit hour

For 18-30 hours per year: $11,970 - $19,950

Tuition: Seminary

$550 per credit hour

For 18-30 hours per year: $9,630 - $16,050

Activity & General Services Fee* $155-$265
Books $300-$600
Rent** $500-$1,000/month OR $6,000-12,000/year
Additional Living Expenses  $150-$250/month OR $1,800-$3,000/year
Health Insurance*** $4,366.00
Food $175-$275/month OR $2,100-$3,300/year
Miscellaneous $100/month OR $1,200/year
Graduation Fee $100
TOTAL EXPENSES PER YEAR (minus tuition) $16,021-$24,831

Tuition: Cost is per credit hour based on the graduate program you are admitted into. Students typically take 18-30 credits per year full-time. To calculate total cost per year, add the appropriate Tuition from the top rows to the Total Expenses Per Year.

Additional Living Expenses includes utilities, phone, laundry, cable, etc.

PLEASE NOTE: Books, Rent, Additional Living Expenses, Food, and Miscellaneous expenses are all estimates and will vary depending on personal lifestyle, the state of the economy, etc. Please take this into consideration when making financial decisions. 

*The Activity and General Services fees for full-time students  (9+ credits) varies by program. To view the most up to date fees, please visit the Business Office page and find your graduate program.

**Rent for a single person varies depending on whether the student plans to live alone or share an apartment and if they rent an apartment from EMU or a private landlord/leasing company. 

***Health insurance is mandatory for all international graduate students.  Dependent coverage is not available.

Health Insurance

Health insurance is an EMU requirement for full-time Seminary, full-time Master's in Counseling, and all International students at the Harrisonburg site. The health insurance plan is only available to those student groups.

EMU offers a health insurance plan through RCM&D Student Health Insurance for Harrisonburg based students. Information about the plan is available through the RCM&D website or by calling their toll-free number at 1-877-480-4161.

Additional Information & Current Rates

Traveling to EMU

EMU is located in the small, friendly city of Harrisonburg, Virginia. There is a true sense of community here, as well as a large degree of cultural and linguistic diversity. Travel time to Washington D.C. is two hours.

Virginia airports within proximity to Harrisonburg include: 

* The Virginia Breeze is a daily Mega Bus route that runs between Harrisonburg and Washington, DC with separate stops at Dulles International Airport and Union Station (train station).

Living in Harrisonburg

We are in the process of finalizing graduate housing opportunities for the 2024-2025 school year. As we are working out the details of creating a graduate community, please reach out to your admissions counselor with questions. If you are in need of on campus housing for the Fall 2024-2025 term, please complete form below.

2024-2025 Graduate Housing Form

Housing options include: 

Shared Facilities

2-Person Apartments

Private bedroom with shared facilities up to 5 other people.

Private bedroom and private bathroom in a 2-person apartment.

These options come with varying price points and amenities. Utilities are included in all pricing, and your housing will be billed directly to your student account.

Additional information about living in Harrisonburg and EMU's on-campus apartments can be found here. When you decide on your living arrangements, be sure to be sure to check what the apartment has in terms of furniture, kitchenware, etc. EMU does not provide everything.

Below is a list of some items you will want to bring or purchase after you get to the states. 

  • Power adapter(s)
  • Cell phone and charger
  • Laptop and charger
  • Clothes for all four seasons - layering clothes will keep you warm too!
  • Toiletry items
  • Bed linens (sheets, blankets, pillow)
  • Kitchen items

We know you can't bring everything in a suitcase with you! Luckily, Gift and Thrift is right across from EMU's campus! 

Additional Tips for Living in the 'Burg

Living in Harrisonburg

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