Visiting students must have a US student visa to enter and study in America.
A US student visa is categorized as a nonimmigrant visa, and it differs from a green card or immigrant visa. A US student visa does not automatically grant a visiting student entry to the US and does not permit a student to work.
To get a US student visa, visiting students must pay certain fees and meet certain financial and other requirements.
A visiting student’s ability to pay tuition is a requirement for getting a US student visa.
A visiting student must present at the consular interview evidence that financial resources exist to pay for the education. This includes tuition, US student housing and the cost of living.
Having a student visa does not make a visiting student eligible for employment in the US.
The visiting student also will have to present evidence of strong economic ties to his or her country of origin. If private loans have been secured for tuition and cost of living assistance, a US citizen must cosign the promissory note.
In addition to tuition and other costs related to attending US schools, visiting students must pay two fees to get a US student visa. These fees are non-refundable and are considered to be surcharges for general maintenance and services for the card-issuing agencies. Failure to pay these fees will result in an applicant’s denial.
One mandatory fee a visiting student must pay is the SEVIS I-901 fee. SEVIS is an Internet-based system that maintains accurate and current information on non-immigrant students. This fee is generally referred to as the Visa Issuance Fee. The SEVIS fee is $100 USD and is non-refundable. The SEVIS fee must be paid before the consular interview.
The second mandatory fee is the Visa Application Fee. This fee is commonly referred to as the MRV. This fee recovers for the US the costs associated with manufacturing, processing and printing the visa. The current Visa Application Fee is $100 USD. Like the SEVIS fee, the MRV must be paid before the interview.
In addition to the MRV fee, the visiting student might be required to pay a reciprocity fee. The reciprocity fee is what another country charges a United States citizen for a similar-type of visa. This fee varies from country to country, so a visiting student will need to factor the reciprocity amount into the MRV fee if one exists.
While the costs and fees for a US student visa could seem overwhelming at first, consider the money spent on the education as an investment. The dividend is the knowledge and experience that gives the recent graduate an edge over the competition.
For more visa and immigration information, please visit Legal Language Services.
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