U.S. News CompassBy . The federal certification process ensures colleges are genuine to protect international students. According to U.S. law, before a U.S. school or vocational program can enroll international students, it must first be certified by the Student and Exchange Visitor Program – a program housed within the Department of Homeland Security. The certification process confirms the U.S. school is bona fide and operational. Doing so provides a level of protection for both U.S. citizens and international students studying in the U.S. More...