4 Ways For An International Student to Stay In America

4 Ways For An International Student to Stay In America

International students- listen up! it’s time to face the truth. You will eventually have to graduate and the F1 visa, the legal status that you occupy as a student, will expire. We can’t be students forever.


Get  A  Job That Will Get You A Work Visa.

The most feasible is to get the H-1B work visa issued by the United State Citizenship and immigration Service (USCIS).  The visa last three years and is renewable for a green card.

It sounds simple,  but the Immigration office has certain criteria for eligibility for the H-1B visa:

1)  You must have a  job offer or  a sponsor for the H-1B. The visa needs an employer to back it up. And no, McDonalds doesn’t count.

2) The job must be a “specialty occupation.“  This is where it gets tricky, the definition for “specialty” varies cases by case. Some  jobs that commonly fall into  “specialty” category  are Tech savvy job,  writing positions, engineering or nursing.

According to the United State Citizenship and immigration Service (USCIS) 2009 H-1B employers, silicon valley companies like Microsoft, Google and Yahoo hire the most for H-1B visas.If you don’t meet the criteria above, you can always be a fashion model because this is a speciality job.

Take note, the employers don’t just freely offer the visa, Loyola University’s Assistant Director at the International Office, Mary Theis  said

It is difficult finding a company who will sponsor the H-1B and that H-1B is six years. Unless you are college teachers and that is easy.”  How do you find the employer, Theis said ” Checking with [your] friends. And Ask your friends where they are getting jobs. Check with the International Student alumni.”


Down Side of H-1B visa: It’s costly for your employer. The application process adds up to $2500-2570. Its competitive. According to the Institute of International Education,  there are 617,746 international students enrolled in American universities and most want this visa.

Join the Army

The Army recruits often and they want men and women who are willing and committed to serve America.

International students can join the United States Army if you are able to provide certain skills such as language interpreter, nurse, or physician. This program is called Military Accessions Vital to the National Interest (MANVI). MANVI takes up 1,000 non-citizens.You can request an info pack if interested.

Down Side of Army: You are required to stay in the army longer than two months and you are required run some miles during boot camp.

Get Married

Have you ever seen the movie Green Card?  The film is about a French man who marries an American woman to get a green card. It is common to pay someone to marry  you for their U.S citizenship. It is also  fraudulent.

I am doing the opposite. I am telling you to get married for love. Just  fall in love with a U.S citizen. Once married, know the green card application process is long. All couples must attend an interview with an immigration officer. Couples should expect detailed and specificinterview questions.

According to USCIS, in 2009 there were 317, 129 green cards through marriage to a U.S citizen.

Down Side: There are thousands of applicants and  it can take a year or more based on your application “place in line” to get your green card. They are also very detailed in interview questions and they can get personal.

More school

When your options are fading quick you can go back to school. As an International Student you can always earn more than one degree.You just earned a bachelor’s degree earn a master’s degree.It will make you more versatile for employers and buys more time to stay in America as an international student.

I know what you are thinking- pay for more school. There are more scholarships for international student in graduate school than undergrad.

Down Side: It involves more studying and more money if you cannot find a scholarship.

You don’t have to go home after graduation, be determined and find a way to stay.


Source: International Students in America

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