The United States' student visa provides an opportunity to foreigners to study in American language schools, high schools, universities and other institutions of higher education. Thousands of learning institutions are approved to accept foreign students on full time studies. It is possible to change schools and universities while being on an F-1 Student Visa without leaving the country.
Student Visa Types
F-1 Visa (Academic Visa) - If you wish to attend a university or other academic institution in the United States, including primary and secondary schools, or a language training program you require an F-1 visa. It is possible in certain limited circumstances for the holder of an F-1 visa to obtain permission to work in the United States. You can remain in the U.S. for up to 60 days after the completion of the course or practical training on your F-1 visa.
M-1 visa (Non-academic Visa) - If you wish to pursue a course of study which is not principally academic in nature at an established vocational or other recognized nonacademic institution such as a post secondary vocational or business school you require an M-1 visa. Holders of M-1 visas may only engage in employment if it is a required part of their practical training and the employment has been approved in advance by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. As a holder of an M-1 visa you may remain in the United States for the period of time it will take to complete the course of study as indicated on the I-20M plus 30 days, or for one year, whichever is less. Spouses and/or children under the age of 21 who wish to accompany or join you in the United States for the duration of your stay require derivative F-2 or M-2 visas.
Requirements to Get a Student Visa for the US
- School Admission - you must be accepted in an educational institution that is approved by the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP).
- Interview - the immigration authorities reserve their rights to decline your visa based on the interview and their assessment of your personal situation.
- Sounds Intentions - you will have to provide proof of permanent residency in your home country and your intention to leave the USA after the course of study ends.
- Ties to your home country - to support your intention to return home you will have to prove ties and reasons to go back - family, business, bank accounts, major financial assets, etc.
- Sufficient funds - you will have to prove you have enough funds to support your stay as legal working opportunities on a student visa will be limited.
Visa First are the worlds largest student visa specialist assisting over 30,000 clients every year to get their educational visas processed.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need the F-1 Student visa?
What documents and information do I need to provide?
- Your original, valid Passport;
- One passport size photograph;
- The proper application forms;
- Form I-20 provided by the school or academic institution you are enrolled in;
- Evidence of sufficient funds covering all expenses, including tuition;
- Evidence of your academic qualifications;
- Application Fees.
Who can apply for this visa?
Am I allowed to work on the F-1 visa?
How long can I stay in the US on F-1 visa?
Can my spouse/children join me in US?
What is the right time to apply for visas?
What about shifting schools once I get there?
I get my visa on one I-20; then I get another I-20 from another school, which I now want to join. What will I have to do?
Does the reputation of the college have any bearing on my visa application?
Does it help if I have been chosen by 10 schools?
Is a student visa guaranteed when an I-20 form is issued by a university?
If sufficient funds are not available, can a loan from banks or other institutions help in getting a student visa?
Do I have to pay the first year's tuition expenses in advance and show a receipt from the university?
Do I need the student M-1 visa?
Am I allowed to work on the M-1?
How long can I stay in the US on my M-1 visa?
Group Bookings for USA F-1 (Academic Student) Visa
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Hello Kimberly, I just wanted to thank you and Lisa for all your help in my visa process. I really appreciated it. You both made it so easy to get a visa. I had a bit of an "ordeal" until I was directed to visafirst. Alot of people I spoke to before finding out about your company seemed to have no idea - you guys did! So I wanted to thank you. Kind Regards Claire Quodling
Hi Antonia and Kimberley Just wanted to let you know that my working holiday visa was approved last week! Thankyou both so much for all your help in getting this sorted- I've got no doubt that without your input I'd be destined for the UK's 'undesirables' list! Would have liked to have come down in person but have been flat out trying to organise everything as I fly out early next week, but if you ever make it over to the UK I'd be more than happy to shout a few beers! Thanks again for all your help. Cheers
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Hi Liz, Hope you are feeling better, thanks for your e-mail it was a great surprize I was delighted to hear that I have been granted my visa and that I can stay in Oz with my boyfriend Dwayne. We are going into our summer at the moment and the weather is great, I hear ye have a lot of flooding at home peoples houses destroyed and others living in fear of flooding. I hope you do not live near any of the flooding.
Just a short note to thank everyone at Visa First for the very efficient and prompt way that you have processed Philip Derby's Russian visa. I will most certainly contact you again as requirements arise for various visa applications. Kind regards.
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