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about United States of America

 

ABOUT & CLIMATE
Often called 'the land of opportunities and hope', 'technological foundry', and 'the land of adventure', United States of America needs no formal introduction. The climatic and geographic variations, the cultural diversity, the commitment and dedication to the development of new technologies, a flourishing and strong economy with a liberalized education system make USA an ideal country for international students.

The climate of USA varies as one moves from one zone to another due to the vast landscape. Generally the western and southern half of the USA has an overall warmer weather, as compared to the eastern and northern half. Eastern/Northern half is cold in winters accompanied by snowfall, and has pleasant summers. Whereas the Western/Southern part has hot summers and comparatively tolerable winters.

The states with well-developed education system include Pennsylvania,New York, New Jersey, California, Illinois, Texas, Washington D.C. Most of the international students prefer to study in these states.

EDUCATION SYSTEM
A US education is rich in experiences, both academic as well as personal. US universities are some of the best multidisciplinary institutes in the world and foster growth of an individual at several stages throughout the course of study. The infrastructure available to students includes high end research labs, well equipped libraries, student lounges, study areas as well as recreational facilities, which all add to the campus experience. What sets US universities apart is their focus on research. The entire learning experience is boosted when taught by top researchers in the field of study. Universities also receive corporate and public grants to advance research in areas of demand and this ensures continuance of the most cutting edge innovations on campus.

The educational institutions in USA can be state funded of privately funded.

State universities : are founded and subsidized by U.S. state governments (for example, California , Michigan , or Texas ) to provide low-cost education to residents of that state. They may also be called public universities to distinguish them from private institutions. State universities tend to be very large, with enrollments of 20,000 or more students, and generally admit a wider range of students than private universities. Private institutions are funded by a combination of endowments, tuition fees, research grants, and gifts from their alumni. Tuition fees tend to be higher at private universities than at state universities, but there is no distinction made between state and non-state residents and the number of enrollments tends to be lower than those in state universities.

These universities and institutions collectively offer undergraduate, graduate and research programmes in addition to associate degrees, diplomas and certificate programmes.

The bachelor's degree typically takes four years to complete. The associate degree usually takes two years to complete. Associate degree programs may be "terminal" programs, which lead into specific careers upon graduation, or "transfer" programs, which correspond to the first two years of a bachelor's degree and tend to be more liberal arts based. Associate degree programs are offered at two-year colleges known as junior or community colleges. Four-year colleges and universities offer bachelor's degree programs, with a small number also offering associate degree programs.

One of the most attractive features of the bachelor's degree program in the United States is that it is highly flexible . You can usually choose from a wide variety of courses and create your own unique program of study. The degree is awarded after you complete a specified number of credits, which are usually completed in four years of full-time study. The first year is called the freshman year; the second is called sophomore; the third, junior; and the fourth, senior. International students, however, cannot study part-time and must maintain full-time status. Courses taken in the first two years are known as lower division courses, and courses taken in the final two years are called upper division courses.

Working as a Student

Work On Campus
During the normal course of the semester, a student is allowed to work for 20 hrs a week within the university. This job may not necessarily be related to the student's program of study and can include part time work in research labs, administrative roles, library positions and grading jobs among others.

Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
A student is allowed to work outside the university during semester breaks for a total number of 364 days, if required as part of the program curriculum. Employment on CPT must be related to the student's program of study and may not commence prior to completion of 9 months of full-time study.

Optional Practical Training (OPT)
Upon completion of their education, international students are allowed to work outside the university, in a position related to the area of study on obtaining the Optional Practical Training (OPT) authorization.

Visa

F-1
F-1 is a full-time student visa that allows international students to pursue education in the US. An F-1 student is required to maintain full time student status by being registered for the full course load during a semester. This may be either 8 or 9 credit hours depending on the university. F-1 students may work for a maximum of 20 hours a week on campus, however, they are not permitted to work outside the university without prior authorization from US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The USCIS may grant work authorization for Curricular Practical Training (CPT) and Optional Practical Training (OPT) which allow for work outside the university in the area of the student's field of study. The F-1 visa is usually granted for the entire duration of the program as specified in the I-20, or may be slightly longer.

F-2 (Dependent of Student)
The F2 Visa is a non-immigrant visa and would be applied for the spouse and minor children of the F-1 visa holder. An F2 dependent visa holder can stay in the US as long as the principal applicant holds F1 status. F-2 visa holders are not permitted to work in the US under any circumstances. Dependents on an F-2 visa may study full time in an elementary or secondary school. Higher level study is restricted to vocational or recreational programs.

H-1B
The H-1B is a non-immigrant visa that allows foreign nationals to work in the US temporarily. The purpose of the H-1B visa is to give US employers the opportunity to hire foreign professionals if a U.S. citizen or resident with similar credentials and ability is not available for the job.

The following documents are required in order to apply for the visa :

  • 10th, 12th, Diploma, Bachelors, Masters & other academic Mark sheets

  • TOEFL and SAT/GRE/GMAT score sheets: You need to submit the entrance scores for the purpose of visa

  • Statement of Purpose (SOP).

  • I – 20[acceptance letter from the university]

  • Letters of other offers & rejections

  • Financial affidavit

  • Passport

  • Financial documents

  • Statement of Assets

  • SEVIS receipt. (SEVIS is the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System. It is the system used by the US government to track all F and J visa holders.)