International Students from around the world comprise approximately 31% of the PBC student body.

International students play a vital role in shaping the core of PBC. Over the past 53 years, they have enriched our culture and expanded the worldviews of fellow students. Welcoming new international students is an exciting opportunity to support their growth and empower them to become influential leaders in their respective cultures.


Important Information

PBC Application Process

  • Complete and submit the Application Request, including the $40 application fee.
  • Provide proof of English Proficiency. Non-native English speakers must take the TOEFL exam.
  • Complete Statement of Financial Responsibility. In order to obtain a visa, international students must demonstrate that they have sufficient funds to complete the school year.
  • Arrange for an official transcript to be sent from your high school directly to Portland Bible College. If you have attended a college or university, have them send PBC an official transcript including the course titles, the credit hours, and grade received. Please do not send a copy of your diploma. All transcripts MUST be translated into English.

Once we have received the complete application we will review the documents. If you are accepted, the International Student Adviser will send you the SEVIS form I-20. You will use this document to apply for the F-1 student visa to enter the United States.

Application Deadlines:

 Fall Semester: May 1st
 Spring Semester: October 1st

Please be sure to read our Statement of Faith before applying.

Financial Responsibility

Statement of Financial Responsibility Portland Bible College is authorized under Federal Law to enroll non-immigrant alien students. In order to receive the I-20 Form (necessary to obtain an F-1 Student Visa), the student must demonstrate proof of Financial Responsibility. This proof can be a financial guarantee by an organization, church or individual. It must be accompanied by a bank statement dated 90 days of the application date and showing ability to pay for study at Portland Bible College for one year.

Statement of Financial Responsibility Form

Married students need to request the exact financial guarantee amount. All Students need to come with at least 50% of the 1st semester’s fees (approximately $3,000) for a down payment. At enrollment when the down payment is made, a monthly payment plan is set in place for the student. By the end of the semester, if the student has paid their monthly payments, the student is debt-free. All married students are required to bring their family. If you are married, the cost of living will be much higher and you would need to have a sponsor or some other funds of your own. Upon request, we can send you a sample budget and the exact financial guarantee amount.

Married Student Financial Summary

English Proficiency Requirements

Non-Native English Speakers

All applicants who do not speak English as their first language will be required to take an English proficiency test (the International Standardized TOEFL – Test of English as a Foreign Language). This test includes oral comprehension and knowledge of grammar and vocabulary. The TWE (Test of Written English) must be included in the scoring of the TOEFL in order for the test to be valid. The test and/or results must be sent directly to the college. Once we receive your test score, we will contact you to schedule a phone or video meeting to determine if you meet our English Proficiency requirements.

English Proficiency Entrance Requirements

The required entrance level is 80 Internet Based TOEFL (iBT). If a student scores between 80-89, they will be allowed to enter the program of their choice, but will be required to take between two and four credit hours of ELL classes in addition to the academic classes. The required minimum TOEFL score of 80 overall must have a minimum sub score of 20 in reading and in writing. A score above 89 iBT and a satisfactory assessment from our English department may require up to 2 credits of ELL support credits.

Student Visa Information

This school is authorized under Federal law to enroll non-immigrant alien students.  Please be aware that your full application needs to be completed and accepted before we can issue your certificate of eligibility (SEVIS Form I-20).

Each international student will be issued a Certificate of Eligibility (SEVIS Form I-20) at the time of acceptance to Portland Bible College. The I-20 form will be sent to the student. Upon receiving their I-20 they must fill out and pay for the I-901 form immediately at this link The fee is $350, subject to change. US Immigration will then send the student a receipt of payment called the I-797 form. Once the student has received their receipt and signed the I-20 form, they can go to the nearest American Consulate to obtain an F-1 student visa. The student must bring their I-20 & I-797 to their appointment to apply for their F-1 Student Visa. It is very important that the student keeps their I-20 as it will be necessary to register for SEVIS with the Registrar at the beginning of each school semester.

For full information on procuring a visa, consult the nearest American Embassy. To find more information on obtaining a student visa, click HERE.

Important Information for Entry into the United States

When you receive your I-20 it is very important to pay attention to the “EARLIEST ADMISSION DATE” . You will NOT be able to enter the United States as an F1 Student before that date. The “Earliest Admission Date” is 30 days before your Program Start Date (First day of class).

Even if you also have a Tourist/Visitor Visa, when you are at Customs you MUST enter the United States with your I-20/F1 form we provide and your Student Visa in your passport.

If your F1 Student Visa is not entered into the system by Immigration, you will NOT be able to attend class or apply for a Social Security card to work on our campus. Please make your travel arrangements accordingly AFTER the “Earliest Admission Date” so you can enter with your Student Visa.

Visiting Portland


Address: 7000 NE Airport Way Portland, OR 97218

Airport Code: PDX


Phone: (503) 460-4234


Arrange for pick-up from airport
New Students – please email your itinerary to the Registrar, at, in order to arrange your pick-up from the airport (We are able to arrange pick-up from the airport your first time arrival to Portland). We will have one of our leaders meet you at the airport. They will be holding a sign that you will recognize.

Tri-met max/bus transportation
Click here to see trip planner from


Broadway Cab
8725 NE Emerson St. Portland, OR 97220
Phone: (503) 227-1234
Hours: Monday thru Friday 8 AM – 5 PM (PST)

Green Cab & Green Shuttle
10118 E Burnside St. Portland, OR 97216
Phone: (503) 234-1414
Hours: Everyday Open 24 hours


You can complete your own search for hotels near the Portland area using these two websites: or


9920 NE Cascades Parkway Portland, OR 97220

Phone: (503) 200-5678  

Embassy Suites

7900 NE 82nd Avenue Portland, OR 97220

Phone: (503) 460-3000  

Hyatt Place

9750 NE Cascades Pkwy Portland, OR 97220

Phone: (503) 288-2808  

Sheraton Hotels & Resorts

8235 NE Airport Way Portland, Oregon 97220

Phone: (503) 281-2500

Living in the United States



Students who are older than 30 years and/or married will be required to find housing off-campus. You may find this housing information helpful. Feel free to complete your own search for apartments around the area using these websites:,,


We highly encourage our students to open a checking account at a local bank. This will protect your money from being stolen or lost. We do not recommend just having cash or traveler’s checks, as this is a risk and liability for you. Debit cards are widely accepted in the States.


  • Bank of America
    10120 NE Sandy Blvd., Portland, OR 97220
    Phone: (503) 257-3404
    Hours: Monday -Thursday 9:30AM to 5:30OM; Friday, 9:30AM to 6:00PM; Saturday, 10AM to 1:00PM
  • Chase
    1111 NE 102Nd Ave, Ste. B, Portland, OR 97220
    Gateway Center‎
    Phone: (503) 231-4528
    Hours: Monday – Friday, 9:00AM to 7:00PM; Saturday, 9:00AM to 4:00PM
  • Wells Fargo
    1610 NE 122nd Ave., Portland, OR 97230
    Phone: (503) 220-2828
    Hours: Monday – Friday, 9:00AM to 6:00PM; Saturday, 10:00AM to 4:00PM
  • US Bank
    4100 NE 122nd Ave., Portland, OR 97230
    Phone: (503) 275-6921
    Hours: Monday – Friday, 9:00AM to 6:00PM; Saturday & Sunday, CLOSED


Banks offer a checking account as a way to protect your money. In order to open a checking account most banks will ask you for a minimum opening deposit. The deposit can range from $25-$100 dollars, depending on the account that you choose to open. There are several saving’s account as well. Some may accumulate interest. We encourage you to stick to a simple checking account. A checking account is a great way to keep your money safe and avoid having it accidentally stolen or lost.

When you open a checking account all banks will provide you with an ATM or Debit card that you can use as your form of payment. Debit/ATM cards are widely accepted in the States. When you use your card, the payment will be automatically withdrawn from your account.

You can also set up direct deposit through your employer so that your paychecks can be deposited into your checking account on pay day.

What to bring with you:

  • Your Passport
  • Your student ID card or a letter from the Registrar’s office verifying that you are a current student
  • Also, bring your SSN just in case the bank adviser requires it


Debit Cards: This is a card used to pay electronically. Will be withdrawn from your checking account. There are overdraft fee’s that will apply to this as well if there are insufficient funds in your account. Talk to your bank for more information on overdraft fee’s.

ATM Machines: You can use your Debit/ATM card to withdraw cash from the ATM machines. There are several ATM machines that are conveniently located throughout the Portland area. You will need to see your banks website to find a location near you.

Credit Cards: This is card that allows you to borrow money from the bank or department store. All credit cards charge an interest rate in order to loan you the money. We highly discourage this for students who are paying their way through school. This is money that you have yet earned and can be a great burden to pay off later. Credit cards do help accumulate your credit score. Your credit score is what helps lower interest cost when purchasing a car, apartment, or home.

Online Banking: If you have access to internet or a mobile phone you can talk to your bank to set up an online banking account. This is an easy way to review your bank statements and check your balance while shopping or before making a payment.

WRITING A CHECK Checks are a great way to pay your bills or make payments. When paying with a check, most places will request to see your ID or driver’s license in order to verify the information. You check should look similar to the following picture:


Many students carpool to work or different campus activities. We do recommend offering to pay $3 to $5 dollars to help them cover some gas as they too are on a tight budget. Sometimes they will not ask you for gas money but it’s polite to offer any ways.

If you are having a hard time obtaining a ride to an event or work, Portland offers many transportation systems. Two of the most commonly used are the Tri-Met buses and Max stations. Below is some helpful information and links to help you find transportation to your destination.



You can log on to to obtain bus or max options for transportation to and from your destination.

Bus Lines

You can view all bus lines at

Max Lines

You can view all bus lines at


2-Hour Ticket (1)2-Hour Ticket
(Book of 10)
1 Day Pass (1)1 Day Pass
(Book of 5)
7-Day Pass14-Day Pass30-Day/1-Month Pass
Honored Citizen
65+, Medicare or Disability
7-17 or High School/GED


Ride sharing companies for hire UBER or LYFT


Second-hand cars can be purchased fairly reasonably, but we do ask that before making a decision you speak to a faculty member to advise you through the process. This is for your own protection.

Also, be aware that Liability insurance is mandatory in Oregon. Failure to have automobile insurance can result in numerous financial and state law problems. Portland Bible College requires all international students to have auto insurance. Students caught driving without insurance may be asked to withdraw from school.


  • AAA (Triple A)
    600 SW Market Street
    Portland, OR 97201 (Downtown Portland)
    Phone: (503) 222-6767
    Hours: Monday – Friday, 8:00AM to 5:30PM
  • (AAA Clackamas) 10365 SE Sunnyside Road, Suite 100
    Clackamas, OR 97015
    Phone: (503) 241-6800
    Hours: Monday – Friday, 8:00AM to 5:30PM
  • American Benefits
    Address: Suite 290, 9755 SW Barnes Rd.
    Portland, OR 97225
    Phone:(503) 292-1580
  • Allstate
    1511 Southeast 122nd Avenue
    Portland, OR 97233
    Phone: (503) 255-3490
    Hours: Monday – Thursday, 8:30AM to 5:30PM; Friday, 8:30AM to 5:00PM
  • State Farm Insurance
    11157 Northeast Halsey Street
    Portland, OR 97220
    Phone: (503) 256-3077
    Hours: Monday – Friday, 9:00AM to 5:00PM
  • American Family Insurance
    11104 Southeast Stark Street
    Portland, OR 97216
    Phone: (503) 256-0945
    Hours: Monday – Thursday, 9:00AM to 5:00PM; Friday, 9:00AM to 4:30PM

Student ID or Driver’s License

You may find it helpful to obtain an Oregon ID card so that you don’t have to carry your passport around with you all the time.

In the United States, you must have a driver’s license to operate an automobile.  To obtain a license you must take two tests administered by the Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV); a written test that indicates your knowledge of the traffic laws in Oregon, and a driving test.

If you fail either test, you can take them again up to three times. Once you’ve failed it three times you must wait 28 weeks before retaking the test again. A driver’s manual may be obtained without charge at any DMV office.


1836 Northeast 82nd Avenue
Portland, OR 97220
Office Hours: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm, Monday thru Friday; 9:00 am – 5:00 pm, Wednesday.
Tel: (503) 299-9999


  Knowledge Test  $5.00
  Driving Test  $9.00
  Identification Card (ID)  $44.50
  Replace ID Card  $39.50
  Driver’s License  $60.00
  Replace Driver’s License  $26.50


In the state of Oregon, the driver of an automobile is required to carry liability insurance. You must carry your insurance documents in your vehicle at all times. Failure to possess necessary insurance may result in a ticket by the police, and your car may be towed. If you have an automobile accident and have no insurance, your license may be taken away for a period of time.


If a police officer turns on the overhead red light and siren on his car, bring your car to the side of the road and stop. Never panic and try to escape from the police. Besides endangering your life and the lives of others, the penalty for attempting to elude police is a serious one, which includes a potential jail term. If you are given a ticket, the date you are required to appear in court will be written at the bottom of the citation. If you are guilty of the charge and do not want to appear in court, you can call the courthouse, ask for the District Court traffic office, and then inquire what the “fine” or penalty will be. Or you can send in the amount of money at the bottom of the ticket indicated by the word “bail” and include a letter of explanation. If you explain that you are a full-time student, the court will usually refund part of the bail.

WHAT TO BRING WITH YOU TO THE DMV: Documents you may use to verify your name and
date of birth:

  • Original or certified birth certificate (a hospital certificate is not acceptable)
  • Armed forces ID card
  • Selective Service registration card or military discharge papers
  • Passport or immigration and naturalization document
  • Alien registration card
  • Official papers, such as adoption papers issued by a court of record showing your birth date
  • Life insurance policy dated at least one year prior to application for a license or permit
  • Certified school attendance record or high school transcript
  • Valid Oregon, out-of-state or Canadian driver license, instruction permit or identification card

Additional documents you may use for proof:

  • Student body card
  • Social Security card
  • Marriage certificate
  • Vehicle title or registration
  • Driver license renewal
  • Credit or bank card
  • Insurance policy, such as automobile, health or life
  • Company ID card
  • Library card
  • Personalized check or savings passbook
  • Bill listing your name

Documents you may use for proof of address:

  • Any Document listed above which includes your name and current address
  • Utility Bill received within 30 days
  • Utility hook-up order received within 30 days
  • Mortgage document or account statement
  • Rent receipt received within 30 days
  • Property tax statement


  • Notify DMV within 30 days of your move.
  • Address forms are available at the DMV office self-service counters.
  • Your new address label will be mailed to you from Salem.
  • There is no fee to change your address

Medical Needs

Medical costs are very high is the United States. We highly recommend having medical insurance. If you have insurance or decide to purchase an insurance plan, please talk to your insurance provider for locations that will accept your benefits. The options listed below may not accept your insurance benefits.


  • Fred Meyer’s
    1111 NE 102nd Ave
    Portland OR 97220
    Pharmacy Phone: (503) 255-5494
    Pharmacy Hours: Monday – Friday: 9:00am to 9:00pm; Saturday: 9:00am to 7:00pm; Sunday: 10:00am to 6:00pm
  • Walgreen’s
    3 NE 82nd Ave
    Portland OR 97220
    Phone: (503) 408-0729
    Pharmacy Hours: Monday – Friday: 8:00am to 10:00pm; Saturday: 9:00am to 6:00pm; Sunday, 10:00am to 6:00pm.
  • Target Cascade
    9800 SE Washington St
    Portland, OR 97216-2420
    Pharmacy Phone: (503) 252-5934
    Pharmacy Hours: Monday – Friday, 9:00am to 9:00pm; Saturday and Sunday: 9:00am to 6:00pm.


Grocery Stores

Fred Meyer
1111 Northeast 102nd Avenue
Portland, OR 97220
Tel: (503) 255-5665
Open: 7:00am to 11:00pm

WinCo Foods 1222 Northeast 102nd Avenue
Portland, OR 97220
Tel: (503) 252-3353 Open: 24 Hours

Whole Foods 4301 NE Sandy Blvd
Portland Oregon 97213
Tel: (503) 284-2644
Open: 8:00am to 10:00pm, Sun. – Sat

Trader Joe’s 4121 NE Halsey St Portland
Tel:  (503) 284-4232 Open: 8:00am to 9:00pm

Costco: 4849 NE 138th Ave Portland, OR 97230-3401
Tel: (503)-252-2243

New Seasons
5320 NE 33rd Ave. Portland, OR 97211 Tel: (503) 288-3838
Open: 8am-10pm every day

International Travel (With Student Visa)


The International Student Advisor’s office serves as the liaison with the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). The advisor can assist you in most of your relations with that government agency. Here are some of the most common areas for questions about the USCIS.


Every passport has a stated date of expiration. You must keep track of that date. Six months before your passport expires, you should contact your country’s embassy in Washington, D.C., or your country’s consulate on the West Coast and renew the passport. For phone numbers see your international student advisor.


A visa is a permit to enter the country. It is usually stamped in your passport. There are several kinds of visas, each with certain specific conditions and restrictions by which the bearer must abide. Most students enter this country on an “F-1” visa. One condition attached to this is that you must be a full-time student. One of the restrictions is that you may not take an off-campus job without specific permission. Another is that you may not transfer from one institution to another without permission of the USCIS.

Going to Canada

Students often visit Canada during holiday breaks. If you want to go to Canada, you must find out from the Canadian Consulate, whether or not you require a visa. If you need a Canadian visa, you must apply to the Canadian consulate in Seattle. Allow a minimum of 10 days if you apply by mail. If you apply in Seattle in person, you can get the visa in one day, providing you apply before 10:30 a.m.  Ask the International Student Advisor to countersign your Form I-20 (student) copy before you leave for Canada; without this signature, you will not be permitted to re-enter the United States.


On-campus jobs
Each year there are a limited number of part-time work opportunities available on campus. According to the United States immigration laws, international students (holding an F1 visa) may be employed on-campus up to 20 hours a week while school is in session. While this will help cover some of the cost of living, it will not be sufficient alone to pay for all the school and living expenses. Please note that a spouse or child of an international full-time student is not allowed to work at all.

Since it will not be possible for a student for pay for school and living expenses with just the On-Campus work study program, International students should arrange for a sponsor to assist them financially each month with approximately $500. If you are not expecting to have on-going support from a sponsor, you must come prepared to pay 100% of the first year’s costs (approximately $12,500). Campus employment would then help the student to save for the following year’s down payments (see financial information). The remaining balance would then be due in monthly payments. Some full-time work may be available while school is not in session to allow the student to save for the next semester as well.

Expenses for a married couple living off campus are considerably higher and it may be necessary to have additional personal funds or sponsors. A detailed financial information sheet is available upon request.
During the first couple of weeks of school, the custodial, maintenance and cafeteria departments hold “try-outs” for potential job openings. Information on the specific time and place where these are held will be published and posted throughout school. Students, and applicants who have been accepted, that would like to know more, can email We will be happy to notify you when the tryouts are scheduled. Whereas we do everything in our power to place as many students as possible; work ethic, aptitude and attitude are closely reviewed when considering a potential hire. If an opening is available, and the student passes the “try outs”, they can then apply for the position.

Off-campus jobs
Working off-campus IS NOT PERMITTED for international students. This includes jobs such as baby-sitting (even if it is being done on-campus), working for cash only or being paid for an internship.  Please see the International Student Adviser if you have any questions.

Social Security Number (SSN)

This is a unique identification number that is issued by the American government to a person. You need a social security number in order to get an on-campus job. If you are going to work on campus you would need to see Clarissa to obtain instructions on how to apply for your card and number. Once you have your card, DO NOT keep the card in your wallet, but file it away with other important documents. Many companies use this number as a means of identification, so you may want to memorize it. You will need to apply for a Social Security Number within two weeks of beginning your employment.

What you will need to apply for a SSN

  • I-20
  • I-94 card
  • Passport/Visa
  • Employment Status Letter from Int’l Student Advisor and Supervisor. Clarissa Marin will give you these letters.

Nearest Social Security office 17925 SE Division Street
Portland, Oregon 97236 Office Hours:  9:00 am – 3:30 pm, Monday thru Friday (Except Federal Holidays) Telephone: 1 (800) 772-1213  OR  1 (800) 325-0778 Website:

American Culture

We know that coming to the United States to study can be an exciting time, but we also understand there are challenges associated with getting acquainted to a new culture. We want to give you a few resources to understanding parts of American culture, and have linked two helpful articles below.

Six Aspects of US Culture

American Culture Shock

Helpful Tips

  1. Remember that our weather here may be different than what you are used to. Our temperature ranges from below freezing in the winter to over 100ºF (38ºC) in the summer. From October to April or May, you will need long sleeved shirts, sweaters and a heavy coat. We also have a lot of rain in the winter and spring so an umbrella or raincoat is needed as well as close-toed shoes. Boots are definitely a bonus to have during the winter. If you do not bring winter clothes with you, you will want to be sure to bring extra money set aside specifically for winter clothes.
  2. Our electricity here is 110 volts, not 220v. If this is different than your country it is best not to bring any electrical equipment or appliances unless it is dual voltage (i.e. hair dryer, curling iron, rice cooker, hot-pot, etc.). You will need to obtain these here.
  3. If you will be living in the dormitory it is very likely that you will have a roommate for at least the first year, due to lack of space. Please remember that the rooms are not very large so it is wise to only bring what you need.
  4. If you are taking any medications or use a particular kind or medical supply, it would be good for you to bring a supply for you. Medication is probably more expensive here and often the name brands are completely different and you may have trouble finding what you are familiar with. It is best not to have to worry about this too soon after you get here while you are making many other adjustments.
  5. If English is your second language, please come with any language helps that you have such as a good dictionary. Many students use computer dictionaries and these have proven to be very helpful.
  6. If you have a national dress or costume, you will probably want to bring one. At different times in the year, we have special chapels and missions services where we encourage all the international students to represent their country and wear their national attire.
Made for More

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