Due to the backlog of applications created by the pandemic, the U.S. State Department has waived student visa in-person interviews and other non-immigrant visa applications through 2022. Applicants for F, M and J visas applying from abroad won’t be required to do an in-person interview at a U.S. consulate. The press release announcing the waiver on December 23, said:
“The COVID-19 pandemic resulted in profound reductions in the Department’s visa processing capacity… As global travel rebounds, we are taking these temporary steps to further our commitment to safely and efficiently reduce visa wait times while maintaining national security as our priority.”
Consulate closures due to the Covid pandemic have resulted in long lines for visa applicants, and a backlog of applications and interviews. The State Department has also extended in-person interview exemptions through the end of 2022 for:
• Persons in Specialty Occupations (H-1B visas)
• Trainee or Special Education Visitors (H-3 visas)
• Intracompany Transferees (L visas)
• Individuals with Extraordinary Ability or Achievement (O visas)
• Athletes, Artists, and Entertainers (P visas)
• Participants in International Cultural Exchange Programs (Q visas)
Additionally, the State Department announcement gate authorization to waive the in-person interview for applicants renewing a visa in the same visa class within 48 months of the prior visa’s expiration has been extended indefinitely.
U.S. embassies and consulates may still require in-person student visa interviews on a case-by-case basis and dependent upon local conditions.
The U.S. offers 3 key types of visas for international students:
F Student Visa
F visas are non-immigrant student visas that allow foreigners to pursue grammar school, high school, college and other educational and training programs in the United States. F-1 students must maintain a full course of study.
M Student Visa
M visas are for nonacademic or vocational studies. M-1 visa holders are not allowed to work during their studies. M-1 student visa applicants must have proof that sufficient funds are available to pay all tuition and living costs for the entire period of their course and stay in the United States.
A J visa is for international research scholars, professors and exchange visitors in a work-study visitor exchange program. J visa applicants must be sponsored either by a university, private sector or government program.
Many international students want to study in the United States. An experienced student visa lawyer can help you apply for a student visa so nothing in the application process so that nothing is missed or delayed, and save you time, money and stress.
Learn More: How Do I Get A Student Visa?
It can be confusing for international students to apply and receive their student visas in a timely manner to attend their course of study. Mario Godoy and the other experienced immigration attorneys at the Godoy Law Office can assess your situation and advise you on your best options to apply for a student visa. Contact Godoy Law Office at 630-912-0322. Godoy Law Office serves the entire Chicago, Illinois area including DuPage, Cook, Kane, Will, and Lake Counties.
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