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US to Open Student Visa Appointments in Mid-May

The US has announced its readiness to process student visa applications for the Fall session and has revealed that the first round of visa appointments will be available by mid-May.

According to a tweet from the US Consulate General in Hyderabad, students should be prepared for their appointments and expect further announcements regarding student visas.

US Consulate General in Hyderabad Announces Student Visa Appointments

While the wait times for visa appointments have been widely reported, the United States has introduced measures to prioritize and expedite the processing of student and work visas. According to an Embassy official, the Biden administration is dedicated to processing all student visa applications from Indian applicants for the upcoming fall session.

The US government has prolonged the visa waiver program until December 31, 2023, which enables particular students, professors, research scholars, short-term scholars, or specialists (F, M, and academic J visa applicants)

To bypass in-person interviews given that they fulfill certain conditions, such as applying for a visa in their country of origin or residence. Under this initiative, consular officers may waive visa interviews for specific first-time and renewing F, M, and academic J applicants previously issued any visa type. Who have no previous visa refusals except if it was overcome or waived, and who have no apparent ineligibility or possible ineligibility?

Certain first-time F, M, and academic J applicants who are citizens or nationals of countries participating in the Visa Waiver Program (VWP) can also be exempted from in-person interviews if they have no obvious ineligibility or conceivable ineligibility and have previously traveled to the US using authorization acquired with the aid of the Electronic System for Travel Authorization (ESTA).

Additionally, applicants renewing a visa in the same category within 48 months of the previous visa’s expiration are also eligible for an interview waiver.

However, the US State Department clarified that consular officers might also nevertheless require an in-person interview on a case-by-case basis, relying on neighborhood conditions.

They encouraged applicants to visit embassy and consulate websites for further information regarding this development, along with current operating status and services.

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  1. Receive an acceptance letter from a US school: First, you need to get accepted into a US school before applying for a student visa.
  2. Pay the SEVIS fee: Once you receive an acceptance letter from a US school, you will need to pay the SEVIS fee. This fee is for the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS), a database that tracks information on international students.
  3. Complete the online visa application: After paying the SEVIS fee, you can complete the online visa application (Form DS-160). Make sure to print out the confirmation page once you complete the application.
  4. Schedule a visa interview
  5. Attend the visa interview:  During the visa interview, you will be asked questions about your background and your reason for traveling to the US.
  6. Wait for your visa to be processed
  7. Travel to the US: Once you receive your visa, you can travel to the US to begin your studies.

To apply for a US student visa, you will need:

  • A current and valid passport.
  • A passport-size photograph.
  • Printed copies of the confirmation pages for your DS-160 and I-901 SEVIS fee payments.
  • Your I-20 form, which is provided by your SEVP-approved school.
  • Your school transcripts and official test scores as listed on your university application.
  • Your diploma (if applicable).
  • Proof of financial support, such as bank statements or other financial documents.

While obtaining a student visa for the USA from India is not necessarily difficult, it is crucial to adhere to all the requirements and allow sufficient time to prepare and submit all necessary documentation.

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