The Essential F1 Visa USA Guide

May 31, 2024
F1 Visa

The Ultimate Guide to Navigating the F1 Visa USA: Everything You Need to Know

The F1 Visa USA is one of the most essential visa categories for international students aspiring to study in the United States of America. The purpose of this visa is to enable students to attend recognized learning institutions, acquire relevant academic experiences, and even start a job. In this article, you will learn the following important information about the F1 Visa USA: application fees, work possibilities, extensions, and changing to a green card.

What does F1 Visa USA stand for?

The F1 Visa USA is a special visa for international students who intend to pursue their studies in America. This visa enables individuals to attend a full-time course at an accredited U.S. college, university, or other institution of higher learning. Applicants must be able to show that they have enough financial means to support their tuition fees and living expenses and that they wish to return to their home country after the completion of their studies.

F1 Visa Application Fee

To apply for an F1 visa, there are some steps to follow aside from paying the application fee. The current F1 Visa fee stands at $185 for each applicant as of 2024. Moreover, students are required to pay the SEVIS fee, which is $350 for the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System. This fee funds the system used to process information related to international students and exchange visitors while they are in the United States.

Working in the USA with an F1 Visa

F1 Visa holders are privileged to have specific types of jobs while studying in the United States.

On-Campus Employment: F1 students are permitted to work on-campus during the academic term for up to 20 hours per week and are allowed to work full-time during the holidays and breaks.

Curricular Practical Training (CPT): CPT enables students to engage in employment that is relevant to their course of study. This can be a part-time or full-time job, depending on the demands of the particular academic course.

Optional Practical Training (OPT): OPT enables students to work for up to 12 months (24 months for STEM graduates) in an occupation that is related to their course of study, either while studying or after they graduate.

 

Can the F-1 visa be extended?

The F1 Visa is typically granted for the duration of the student’s academic program plus an additional 60 days to prepare for departure from the U.S. However, there are scenarios where an extension might be necessary:The F1 Visa is typically granted for the duration of the student’s academic program plus an additional 60 days to prepare for departure from the U.S. However, there are scenarios where an extension might be necessary:
Program Extension: If a student experiences an extension in the amount of time required to complete his or her studies beyond initial expectation, then this student is allowed to make a request for extension of the program with the help of a DSO.
OPT Extension: STEM field students have the option of an extension of their OPT up to 24 months, making the total working permit 36 months.

Can an F1 Visa Holder Apply for a Green Card?

While the F1 Visa itself does not directly lead to a green card, there are pathways that an F1 Visa holder can pursue to become a permanent resident:While the F1 Visa itself does not directly lead to a green card, there are pathways that an F1 Visa holder can pursue to become a permanent resident:
Employment-Based Green Card: Alternatively, an F1 Visa holder after completing their studies may obtain an employer who offers to sponsor him or her for a green card. Employment-based immigration categories include EB-2 and EB-3.
Family-Based Green Card: If the student marries a U.S. citizen or permanent resident, then it becomes possible to achieve the green card through family sponsorship.
Self-Sponsorship: In exceptional circumstances, exceptional students and researchers are likely to be granted EB-1 petitions as they fall under the self-petition category of persons with extraordinary abilities.

Conclusion

Understanding the F1 Visa USA is vital knowledge for any foreign student wishing to study in the United States of America and excel in his or her career. The intricacies of the visa processes—the fees to be paid, types of work and restrictions, duration of stay allowed, process to extend and change the visa, opportunities and pathways towards permanent residence—all of these are important when coming to this country. Understanding these areas would enable students to boost their academic and future career prospects and, therefore, chart a formidable future.

ixdh9e

hii

Leave a Comment