Immigrating to the United States is a dream for hundreds of thousands, if not millions, of people around the world, but not everyone has the opportunity to invest in a U.S. business. The annual U.S. program through DV immigrant visa issuance, the Green Card Lottery, is the most popular option for immigration. But often Russians and citizens of CIS choose alternative ways to get a green card and future citizenship in America – political asylum, immigration by visas, including student and work visas.
In this article we will discuss a common way of immigration – through education (obtaining a student visa).
Obtaining a student visa
If you thought you were in your 30s, 42s, or 50s and it’s too late to study, you’re wrong. There is no stereotype of being a student in the United States. First, everyone is a student: both high school students and students at all levels of education. Secondly, getting a profession in the United States is treated with due consideration, when it is not a “crust” that is valuable, but professional skills. This is why people sometimes work for years before going to college.
Nearly 5 million students study and live in the United States each year.
Types of student visas in the USA:
J-1 – Exchange visa (Exchange visitors). As a rule, specialists in the fields of education, culture, and science receive such a visa. The “Work and Travel” program, familiar to many people, suggests obtaining exactly J-1 visa. In fact, this visa is designed for internships, i.e. you can legally work, get a salary and pay taxes.
M-1 is for vocational students (Vocational Student), which gives the opportunity to take continuing education courses in the United States or to learn technical professions. However, with this visa an internship is possible only after graduation.
F-1 is the Academic Student visa, which enables you to study at U.S. universities or U.S. language schools.
You do not need to apply to every U.S. college or university, but only those with SEVIS accreditation. It is these institutions that can fill out the I-20 form and then obtain the student visa.
The most popular visa is the F-1 visa. Most often, first they enroll in language courses, pull up English, and then look for a university to obtain a bachelor’s or master’s degree. The uniqueness of the student visa is that it is renewable every year, allowing you to study at the undergraduate level for an unlimited time: even 5, even 10 years. The main thing is to study.
You can not go to university or simple language courses and not attend them. In this case your visa will be canceled. The same is true for tuition fees.
How much does it cost to study in the USA?
If you are not a scholarship holder, and you pay your own tuition, you must provide a bank statement to obtain a student visa with enough money to pay your tuition and living expenses. To avoid counting it yourself, you can go to the university, where the staff will give an approximate amount.
When paying for education in the United States, you need to take into account the fact that tuition for foreign nationals is more expensive than for permanent residents (U.S. citizens or green-card holders of immigrants). At the same time, we can name the states with the lowest tuition costs:
Wyoming – from $16,000 per year
Utah – from $19,000 per year
Nevada – from $20,000 per year
Florida – from $21,000 per year
Montana – from $22,000 per year.
In addition, even the most prestigious universities have student financial aid programs. At Harvard, for example, about 71 percent of students receive some form of financial aid. At the same time, about 20% of Harvard students are from poor families and do not pay for their education at all. So one of the most prestigious universities in the world is looking for the most talented students.
Can I work in the United States on a student visa?
Students in the United States are eligible for paid internships – Optional Practical Training. The duration of this internship is 1 year. You may work up to 20 hours per week during your studies. During vacations – more. The main thing is not to exceed 1 year (the total duration of the official work experience). Career counselors on campus can help you with your job search.
A student visa, one way or another, provides for completion of a term. If a student wants to continue his or her life in the United States, at the very least he or she needs to get a job. A one-year internship is just about the best way to find a future employer who will not only provide a work visa, but also a residence permit in the future.
If you are planning to immigrate to the U.S. to study, contact Mama America immigration lawyer Nikolai Murphy for a free consultation.