Bringing Dependents

Graduate Student Association LogoThe Graduate Student Association (GSA) offers a variety of programs which can benefit the family of graduate students. International students are invited to participate in the Household Items Program that collects and redistributes various household items such as furniture, pots etc.

Dependents of students who wish to come to the U.S. must have their own dependent visas obtained at the U.S. consulate abroad. Bringing dependents to the U.S. involves supplementary expenses for support of their dependents in the amount of $7000 for a spouse and $3000 for each child. Students are advised to purchase medical insurance for dependents as soon as they arrive. Dependents of F-1 students will be applying for F-2 visas based on the I-20 issued by UNR. If you are a prospective student, please indicate that you will be bringing your dependents to UNR, and request the dependent I-20s at the time of admission. Dependents of J-1 students will be applying for J-2 visas based on the DS-2019 form issued by UNR. Dependents are encouraged to get involved in University and community events.

F-2 dependents are unable to work; J-2 dependents may apply for work permit. Spouses of students and faculty on F-2, J-2, or H4 visas may study English at IELC and receive a 25% tuition discount when taking minimum 2 classes. F-2 dependents in the United States may study part time in any certified program at an SEVP-certified school (such as the University of Nevada, Reno) at the postsecondary level, as long as it does not amount to what regulations define as full time for an F-1 student. This means that F-2 dependents may enroll in less than 12 credits as an undergraduate and less than 9 credits as a graduate if they enroll at UNR which could lead to attainment of a degree. This does not mean that F-2 dependents have to enroll in classes to maintain their status unless they are minors.

F-2 dependents can still participate full time in avocational or recreational studies, such as hobbies. F-2 minors must still comply with compulsory education requirements in attending kindergarten through 12th grade. However, an F-2 dependent who wants to enroll full time in a course of postsecondary academic or vocational study must apply for and obtain approval to change nonimmigrant classification to F-1 or M-1 before beginning their full-time study.

For additional information visit Dependents at the Department of Homeland Security's Study in the States website.