Another Q&A sesh! Don’t you love these? I love these.
I love these because I feel that asking questions is such a good way of learning. Sometimes you do things, sometimes you ask things. Now is the time to ask things!
I received a question about visas that I think has an important answer:
Long time reader, first time writing. First of all I love your blog! Quite the fan over here, let me tell you.
I have a question I’d love for you to answer,
How do I get a Student Visa for America?
Thank you for all your help!
Firstly, thank you so much for reading! I’m glad you’re enjoying the blog and that you feel it’s helping. Any improvements do let me know! I’ll approach this question from the perspective of an exchange student, as this is the situation I’m in.
The US has several different kinds of visas, which fall under ‘immigrant’ and ‘non-immigrant’ categories. Immigrant visas are for those who wish to become immigrants in the US, so settling down etc. Non-immigrant visas are for those who wish to visit, for things like tourism or education. Exchange students fall into the non-immigrant category.
There are different kinds of non-immigrant visas. The one that concerns exchange students is the J1 visa. This allows you entry into the US to study at an institution for a limited period of time. In my case, this will be for one academic year.
In order to obtain a J1 visa, you need to have a sponsor. This is usually your host university, but in the case of applying through ISEP for a year abroad, ISEP is your sponsor. Your sponsor will fill out a DS-2019 form, which has details about you and your host institution on it. Once you have this, you can schedule an appointment at the US Embassy nearest to you. When you go to your appointment you’ll be asked some questions, which you’ll answer. After this you’ll then, hopefully, be issued your visa, and you’re good to go!
It’s important to remember that without the visa, you will not be allowed into the US. Because of this, it’s advisable to wait to book your flights until you have your visa all sorted.
It’s also important to note that visas cost money. They are not free. These costs are liable to change, so it’s best to check official government websites for up to date information. More information from the Department of State on J1 Visas can be found here, and here.
I hope this helped!
As a disclaimer, I am not a government official, nor do I claim to be any kind of visa expert. The answer given above reflects my own personal experiences, and should not be taken as an accurate representation of every similar circumstance or situation.
Got a question? Leave a comment below, or send me a message!