Increasing Visa Processing With an Emphasis on Students is a Priority for the US


Subhashri Roy
Updated on May 16, 2022 03:10 PM IST

By 2022, the US expects to have reached two-thirds of its pre-COVID visa capacity, with the goal of reaching 100% by the end of 2023. In addition to educating existing staff members, Mission India is hiring more officials. They just appointed five new visa officers at their Mumbai Consulate.

US Govt to Give Priority to Student Visas

Latest Update (May 16, 2022):Don Heflin, Minister Counselor for Consular Affairs at the United States Embassy in New Delhi, went live on Instagram and Facebook on May 11, 2022, to convey an update on visa services, with an emphasis on students.

The Minister began by stating that the summer is all about visas and that special preparations had been made for US student visas.

He stated that they approved a record 62,000 student visas in 2021 and that they are on track to do so again in 2022. In fact, they plan to issue more student visas (M, F, and J visas, including dependents) than they have in the past.

Also Read:Ukraine: SC Orders NMC to Frame One-time Measure Scheme for Indian Medical Students

Special Arrangements for International Students

  • Parents with visas or Dropbox appointments could bring their student children to the US.

  • Students in the USwill have an easier time getting Dropbox appointments because more will be available.

  • A huge number of student visa arrangements will be made available in the mid months of 2022.

  • Between August 15 and September 1, 2022, the US will offer up to 15,000 spots for students who have previously been denied admission. These appointments are also available to students who receive their I-20s later than planned.

  • Appointments for first-time B-2 visa applicants or those who do not qualify for Dropbox appointments will be introduced to the system in late August or early September of 2022. In Spring 2023, the US will offer a substantial number of appointments for new visa applicants.

Also Read:Fraser Assures Return of IRCCs Visa Processing Time to Original Standards by 2023

Tips and Pitfallsfor International Students

  • Check for visa appointments several times a day, but if a candidate regularly refreshesthe portal then theyrisk being locked out for 72 hours.

  • Applicants should be able to explain to the officer why a specific course/level of study is appropriate for their job goals. Prepare to describe how the targeted education will benefit them in their daily life. When an applicant is changing academic paths or seeking a second degree at the same level as an existing one, this becomes even more crucial.

  • An interview does not require any English language tests or a high level of ability in the language. However, an applicant who does not speak English well may find it challenging to convey their genuine desire to study during the interview.

  • Even if the academic school waived any tests, it is important to take them nevertheless because a good result would help students in the interview.

  • Applicants should prepare to "tell their story" during the visa application interview, which should be akin to an elevator pitch because immigration interviews are typically only a few minutes long.

  • Applicants should bring all of their financial documentation to the interview, although Mission India staff do not focus on the means to pay for the course.

  • Applicants may contact agents to arrange visa appointments and assist with the application, but this can be problematic because any errors or misrepresentations made by the agent would be ascribed to the applicant, potentially affecting visa adjudication.

  • Third-country nationals may enrol in India, although it is recommended that they apply in their home country.

  • Applicants who receive 221(g) notices must act promptly to comply with the notice's requirements. This allows authorities to make quick choices.

  • Only 120 days before the start of a student's course can a visa be given. Before that, one might apply, but the matter would be held pending under 221(g), and the applicant would be required to send in the passport at a later date.

  • Applications for Dropbox are typically processed within seven days of the Dropbox appointment.

Get Expert Guidance on Studying in the US!

Source: The Economic Times

The appointments for US visas will be made available from November 1 with preference given to student visas. The US forecasts a heavy surge in the number of visa applications with the lifting of travel restrictions for vaccinated travellers, US Consul General to Kolkata, Melinda Pavek announced.

Earlier, the US had announced the lifting of travel curbs on India, China and much of Europe from November 8. These Covid-19 restrictions were first imposed at the beginning of 2020 with the onset of the global pandemic.

The diplomat made this announcement during an interactive session with the Indian Chamber of Commerce (ICC).

Also Read:US Higher Education Authorities Seek Clarification on Vaccination Policy for Int'l Students, Scholars

She further highlighted that the US has already issued 62,000 student visas to Indians this year and that with the US presidential proclamation of travel ban coming to an end on November 8, all types of visa applications will become eligible.

Officials said that the accounting period of US visas for work, education or business is between September of a particular year to August of the next year.

A consul official said that student and emergency visas were closed only for a brief period and that from November 8, all types of visas will be granted, which will likely lead to a heavy surge.

Also Read:US Student Visa Approval is Hitting a Record High in India, Check How

ICC officials added that bilateral trade between the two countries had already recovered by 50% until August, which is expected to reach the pre-Covid level by the end of this year.

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Source:Indian Express

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