international students

The New York Conservatory welcomes students to join us from around the world. In any year, around 15% of our student body are non-resident international students. Our international admissions team works closely with each student step-by-step through the admissions and visa process and both Student Services and our international student community help new international students settle in and feel at home in New York City.


international student information sessionS

I-20/Student Visa Walkthrough and Q&A

Join us for an interactive webinar on how to navigate the process of becoming an international college student in the U.S. Learn about how to apply, audition, secure your visa and more!

International Student Timeline

Apply for Admission

Apply for I-20 Form

Apply for F-1 Student Visa

Step 1: Apply for Admission

Application steps do not have to be completed in sequence, but all are required for us to make an admissions decision:

1)  Complete the Online Application

2)  Schedule a Zoom audition, or audition at an in-person event.

3)  Send copies of your academic records/transcripts.

  • Examples of high school records: secondary certificate/diploma, reports showing subjects taken and marks received, GCSEs, leaving exams, etc.
  • Examples of university records: university reports, A-levels, BTEC certificates, etc.

4)  Submit your essay

  • Please respond to the prompt in roughly ~400-500 words
    • What do you think are the three most important qualities required to be successful in an acting career, and how do you embody or demonstrate those qualities?

5)  Provide two letters of recommendation

  • We require these to be from a contact such as a teacher, guidance counselor, advisor, mentor, coach, employer (supervisor, manager, etc.), director, volunteer coordinator, etc. In these letters, your contact will attest to your personal character and work ethic. We will not accept recommendation letters from family members or friends.

6) Pay $50.00 application fee

  1. Complete the Online Registration Form
  2. Submit an audition self-tape ([email protected]) or schedule a Zoom audition

Step 2: Apply for I-20 Form (Proof of Funding)

This step is by far the biggest hurdle for international students and this can take a lot of time. We hope to coach students through the I-20 application and F-1 visa application as soon as possible for their best outcome and best timeline in getting everything sorted in time for their desired intake.

Step 3: Apply for F-1 Student Visa

Once a student has been issued their official I-20 form, we will work together to begin the F-1 Student Visa application process.

  • Please take note of the additional visa fees:
    • SEVIS I-901 visa fee: $350 USD
    • DS-160 visa processing fee: $160 USD

Additional international requirements

English is the language of instruction for all New York Conservatory programs. The better your command of English, the more likely you are to succeed! Therefore, all international students from non-English speaking countries are required to provide proof of an acceptable level of English proficiency (includes speaking and comprehension).

Approved Language Proficiency Tests (and corresponding acceptable score):

  • TOEFL – 70 iBT
  • IELTS – 6
  • Duolingo English Test – 95
  • Cambridge English Language Assessment – B2
  • SAT redesigned (2016 and after) – 550 on Evidence-Based Reading and Writing exam
  • SAT (before 2016) – 500 on SAT Critical Reading
  • ACT – 20 on the ACT English exam
  • Cambridge Certificate of Education in one of the following exams: GCSE, IGCSE, CSEC, O-Levels, AS-Level, or A-Levels – ‘C’ or better in English.
If you believe you qualify for a proficiency wavier (i.e., you are already fluent), please contact the Director of International Admissions, Elaine Capella at [email protected].

To complete enrollment, international students must submit a credential evaluation (with English translation) of high school transcripts/secondary school leaving certificate/diploma. The evaluation must indicate that the student has received the equivalency of a U.S. high school diploma. 

It is encouraged you check in with the Director of International Admissions, Elaine Capella, before moving forward with this process.

Applicants can use any of the following credential evaluation services:

: SpanTran Educational Services, Inc – SpanTran Pathways – New York Conservatory for
Dramatic Arts
(NYCDA applicants will receive their evaluation at a discounted rate and SpanTran will send a copy of the official evaluation report directly to NYCDA at no extra charge)

World Educational Services (WES)
Global Credential Evaluators (GCE)
Academic Evaluation Services, Inc.
A2Z Evaluations, LLC
Center for Applied Research
Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc.
Educational Records Evaluation Service, Inc.
Evaluation Service, Inc.
Foundation for International Services, Inc.
Global Services Associates, Inc.
International Consultants of Delaware, Inc.
International Ed. Research Foundation, Inc.
Josef Silny & Associates, Inc.

what our international students say

The teaching is amazing, but also the administrative part, because the international students have to deal with a bit more. I felt really comfortable just asking questions all the time.

Elizabeth Maille - France

The amount of things that are put into the Musical Theater curriculum, like actor's lab to Meisner to Improv, I just figured this is where I really need to be because they're going to teach me everything I need to know to put myself in the industry.

Adwoa Duncan-Williams - UK