Types of student visas for US
A student visa is a stamp by the immigration authorities on your passport which allows you to stay and study for a specified period of time. Once you get admission into your desired course and university, the next step would be to obtain a student visa.
For an international student who is coming to the US, the US Government gives three different student visa types – F1 Visa, J1 Visa or M1 Visa. Which visa will cater to your needs and how it will impact your financing in the US, we will help you with that as well.
Let us first understand the different types of visas in detail.
F1 Visa is a non-immigrant visa issued to those who want to study at an accredited US college or university or to study English at an English language institute. This is one of the most common forms of student visa in the US. In order to get full-time student status, F1 students need to maintain the minimum course load.
F1 students have to complete their studies as per the expiration date on their I-20 form (Certificate of Eligibility for Non-immigrant Student Status). This is given by the US college or university that the student will attend.
If you fail to maintain your F1 visa status, you will not be allowed to return to re-enter the US after leaving. Also, you will not be eligible for practical training (OPT or CPT) or on-campus employment.
Working on F1 Visa
F1 visa students are not allowed to work off-campus unless you apply for optional practical training (OPT) . This will allow them to work for one year after completion of their academic program. However, if you work without approval, your visa will be revoked and you will have to leave the US.
After completion of course, you have 60 days to leave the United States under your F1 visa. If you want to stay in the US, then you need to re-enroll in a higher program, transfer to another school to receive a new I-20 form, or apply to change your visa status. Our expert counsellor will provide you with all the options.
J1 visa is primarily issued to students who need to obtain practical training that is not available in their home country in order to complete their academic program.
J-1 Visa also allows for similar employment as the F1 visa. But only after getting permission from the exchange visitor program sponsor.
An M1 Visa is issued to a student for non-academic or vocational study or training in the US. For those who have enrolled for technical and vocational programs, they are not permitted to work during the course of their studies. During their visa interview, the M-1 student visa applicants should be able to prove that he/she has sufficient funds to pay all tuition and living costs for the entire period of intended stay.
Here’s a checklist of documents generally required for a US student visa
- A valid passport that is valid for at least six months beyond your period of stay in the US
- Acceptance at a SEVP approved school and your Form I-20
- Application fee payment for the SEVIS
- Non-immigrant visa application and the Form DS-160 confirmation page
- Your photograph
How can Study in US Global help with visa applications?
Study in US Global is a one-stop for all your visa concerns. Our expert counsellors have their eyes on embassy updates and will give you step-by-step guidance on the whole visa process. Whether it is F1 Visa Status or Extending Visa in the USA, we will help you prepare the right documents for your submission.
Our experienced team will provide you with free visa counseling, visa file preparation and mock training for visa interviews. Rest assured, with Study in US Global, you will have the latest applications forms and guidance. We will also direct you to the official websites and authorised immigration representatives to make your visa process smoother and easier.
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