The United States is the most popular study destination worldwide. Each year over half a million students visit the United States to study in US educational institutions at all levels. United States of America is a country of the western hemisphere, comprising fifty states and several territories. Forty-eight contiguous states lie in central North America between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, bounded on land by Canada to the north and Mexico to the south; Alaska is in the northwest of the continent with Canada to its east, and Hawaii is in the mid-Pacific. The United States is a federal constitutional republic with Washington DC its federal capital. The US hosts more international students than any other country in the world, a number fast approaching 600,000. In fact, international students comprise approximately 4% of the total Undergraduate US University and US college population, and 10% for US graduate school. These international students from every continent in the world choose to study in the US because they believe that a US education would afford them the best preparation for their future.
A 2015 estimate puts population of USA to 308,642,294.
New York, Los Angles, Chicago, Houston, Philadelphia, Phoenix, San Antonio, San Diego, Dallas, San Jose, St.John
US universities, US colleges and US schools constantly rank very high in world rankings, just one of the reasons to study in the US. There are several schools that are world famous and welcome international students.
The US offers international students the most exciting, rewarding and comprehensive array of study options in the world. International students who choose to study in the US have almost unlimited study choices. Furthermore, international students who successfully complete their US study are highly sought-after by employers worldwide.
The United States has more institutions of higher learning than any other country in the world. More importantly than that, however, is the quality of these academic bodies. Most American colleges and universities offer top-notch education programs with highly qualified teaching staff.
One of the best things about studying in the USA is the vast number of academic options offered to students. Since the USA is such a large country with vast resources, almost every field of study is available in the country. One can study everything from Russian history to nuclear physics.
A degree or certificate from a college or university is useless if it is not recognized by employers, other institutions or field authorities. Therefore, it is of the utmost importance to ensure than the degree from the school you choose is recognized in the place you plan to use it in. Fortunately, Colleges and Universities in America are given professional accreditation by different governing bodies. These schools have to earn their accreditation by meeting certain criteria, helping ensure a quality education, as well as a degree or certificate that is recognized.
Because of the vast wealth of resources in America, the opportunities for practical training related to your field of study are vast. Most college and universities have established affiliations with employers and researchers in different fields of study, thereby creating an avenue for students to obtain hands-on and invaluable experience.
More and more often, American colleges and universities are focusing on the global aspects of each subject, better preparing students with a worldwide view of their field. No longer can students merely focus on certain geographic areas when obtaining their academic training. Most US learning institutions have recognized this and offer a more comprehensive and global curriculum to meet these new trends.
One will find most Americans to be very hospitable, friendly, kind, generous and accepting of foreigners.
Regardless of what degree a student chooses to pursue in school, he or she will have to use computers and other technologies in order to succeed. Many universities incorporate the latest technology into their curriculum, encouraging students to obtain proficiency before they go out into the workplace.
Since the USA school system utilizes credit units and often accommodates working students, most schools offer academic programs that are flexible in nature.
Experiences that a student gains in campus life are worth as much as the education itself. The lessons learned from co-existing and living with others from all over the world is priceless.
The American education system offers international students the most diverse set of education options in the world.
The American education system requires that students complete 12 years of primary and secondary education prior to attending university or college. This may be accomplished either at public (or government-operated) schools, or at private schools. These 12 years of schooling (or their equivalent) may also be completed outside the USA, thus giving foreign students the opportunity to pursue the benefits of the American education system and obtain a quality American education.
Generally the academic year in the US, is divided into a semester or a quarter system. There are generally 3 semesters – Fall (begins in September and ends in December), Spring (begins in January and ends in April) and Summer sessions, which begin in May. The Fall and Spring semesters are generally 4 months each. The Summer session is optional and a student may either attend the summer session or visit relatives. In a quarter system the academic year is broken into 4 parts or 4 quarters, which is the Fall, Winter, Spring and Summer. Each quarter is approximately 3 months.
Students who have obtained a bachelor’s degree can continue their education by pursuing a Master’s degree. This is usually a two-year degree that is highly specialized in a specific field. Admission to a graduate program usually requires a minimum of 15 or 16 years of formal education. That is, 12 years of primary and secondary schooling and further 3 or 4 years of college education. This depends on the course and the requirements of the University that they intend to study at.
Students who want to advance their education even further in a specific field can pursue a doctorate degree, also called a PhD. A PhD degree can take between three and six years to complete, depending on the course of study chosen, the ability of the student, and the thesis that the student has selected.
Students who have completed high school and would like to attend college or university must attend what is referred to as an undergraduate school. These are schools that offer either a two-year degree (called an associate degree) or a four-year degree (called a bachelors degree) in a specific course of study. That course of study is called the major. While most schools that offer a four-year degree will admit students who have not yet chosen a major, all students are required to select (or declare) a major by their second year at school. Students who complete an associate degree can continue their education at a four-year school and eventually complete a bachelor degree.
Accreditation is a process by which universities and their programs are recognized for maintaining a certain level of performance and quality. Accreditation is usually done by non-governmental agencies called accreditation bodies. There are two types of accreditation: Regional & Professional.
Regional bodies ascertain whether colleges and universities as a whole meet certain standards of educational quality.
In addition, certain professional accrediting bodies evaluate the quality of education in specific fields like Business, Law etc.
Accreditation ensures that universities meet minimum standards. It also helps in increasing the recognition of degree by employers and schools. Most accredited Universities are required to meet certain minimum standards of educational quality and are regularly monitored by accrediting agencies. This ensures that you will receive an education that will be worth your money.
To check out the list of accredited US universities, go to www.chea.org
Government of India recognizes only accredited U.S. universities
We strongly recommend applying to only accredited universities.
The tuition fees can vary from $15,000 - $25,000 per annum on an average.
On an average the Tuition fees range from US $18,000 to $30,000 per annum.
The tuition costs vary from university to university. They also largely vary with your choice of major. Certain programs like Fine Art, Photography and Film are extremely expensive majors to pursue as compared to a Computer Science or Business major.
Living expenses vary from state to state. Some states are more expensive than the others. For example, the living costs in New York and California are very high as compared to states like Arizona or Michigan. Generally a school that is located in the heart of a city will be more expensive than a school that is located in a small town. Also the kind of accommodation that you choose will affect your living expenses. Renting an apartment on your own might prove to be much more expensive than living on-campus in the university provided dorms. Students who are keen on off-campus housing can seek 2 or 3 other students who can share an apartment. In this way one can use one’s money optimally.
You will need to pay a one-time orientation fee at the beginning of your academic career at a particular University. The orientation program will enlighten you on the various aspects of the University, the location of different offices and departments, the facilities that are available to students and the various student organizations that exist on campus
Each US school sets its own international student admissions requirements. Different US schools will have different minimum requirements for grades as well as for standardized tests (such as the IELTS and the SAT,GMAT,GRE). Even within the same school, there may be different requirements pertaining to admissions for international students, depending on the major (or course of study) selected.
This is necessary for students to have a budget plan. The choice of your college and major would depend on a large extent on your ability to pay.
Students who are exceptionally bright or at the top of the class maybe awarded merit-based scholarship. The amount may vary from a few thousand dollars to a full tuition waiver!
There are many universities in the US that provide financial aid and international student scholarships to international students, both at the Undergraduate and Graduate level. However, this aid is usually limited and is often more readily available to Graduate than Undergraduate students. You must submit a financial aid application if you intend to seek financial assistance for your studies abroad. The policies regarding financial aid vary considerably.
Even if no assistantship is available at the time of admission, most Indian students manage to get some kind of financial aid from the university after one or two semesters. So it makes sense to go to the US for education if you can manage one year’s expenses on your own.
US universities offer two main intakes...
Fall Semester Intake (September/October)
This is the main intake and almost all programs are offered at this time. More financial aid is also available for this semester.
Spring Semester (January/February
) This is the mid-year intake. However, all courses may not be offered in this intake. Whether or not a University will offer a January / February intake can be found out on the respective university’s website, university brochures or from our counselors.
There is limited financial assistance available for this semester as most universities allocate funds to projects in the Fall semester. Some universities also have a Summer intake around July.
Though each University specifies its application procedure / requirements, generally one can apply for admissions through us at Avenues Overseas, where by all application, admission and correspondence services will be provided by us. You can give us all necessary supporting academic documents and we will assist you with the entire admission procedure.
The following checklist will be helpful while applying to a university in USA...
1. Application Form
2. Application fee receipt
3. Photocopy of passport
5. Statement of Purpose
6. GRE / IELTS / SAT / GMAT score sheets (as applicable)
8. 8th, 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th standard for Undergraduate students
9. 10th , 12th and Graduation for Graduate students
10. True copy of all mark sheets – all academic year
11. Recommendation letters of at least 3 professors / school teachers
12. True copy of Experience certificate
13. True copy of Professional or Vocational courses, if any
14. Original bank balance certificate and CA report only of liquid assets
15. Original affidavit of support
The evidence of financial support is required by universities to issue the documents needed for visa application. Although it is a requirement for application, it is usually not taken into consideration into factors that determine admission. Most universities make their admission decisions without regard for the source and amount of financial support.
You would be required to submit documentation of your family’s financial resources to help schools assess your need. Most of the universities have their own financial aid form, which you would have to complete.
You would also be required to submit a bank statement demonstrating your financial capacity to support your education in US. Some US state institutions offer tuition waivers to international students in return for some type of educational contribution.
Application Centre counters timings
0800 - 1300 hours & 1400 - 1500 hours
0800 - 1300 hours & 1400 - 1700 hours
Monday to Friday except declared Indian and U.S. Holidays
There are two non-immigrant visa categories for persons wishing to study in the United States. The "F" visa is for pursuing academic studies and/or language training programs, and the "M" visa is for non-academic or vocational studies.
SEVIS: All students must pay this fee. SEVIS stands for Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) program and it requires schools and exchange programs to verify the enrolment status of all continuing and new foreign students and exchange visitors. However the visa cannot be issued until student SEVIS fee has been paid. All applicants applying with I-20 forms are required to provide the SEVIS I-901 fee receipt as proof of payment. Log on to www.ice.gov/sevis for further details.
Each applicant, including children are required to pay the following fees in order to schedule an appointment and appear for a U.S. Visa interview in India. The following fees will be applicable to you:
|Visa Category||Visa Fee in US Dollar||Visa Fee in INR|
Current Conversion Rate: 1 US $ = INR 58
|VFS Service Charge||INR 365 (including service tax@12% and education cess @0.36%)|
|HDFC Bank Charges||INR 22(including service tax@12% and education cess @0.36%)|
|Total Service Charge||INR 387|
Important Notice - Applicants having paid the old Visa fees $140 would be honoured to appear for a visa interview till July 12, 2012 with the same HDFC Visa receipt copy.
Applicants appearing for Interview after July 13, 2012 would be required to carry the variance amount of old and new visa fees during interview, and submit at Embassy/Consulate. The amount can be paid in INR by Demand Draft / Cash or American Credit Card (issued by any bank in USA). IWP applicants eligible for finger printing waiver can submit the variance amount at VFS centre through Demand Draft only.
Demand draft can be made in favour of
New Delhi Embassy -‘’U.S. Embassy New Delhi”
Mumbai Consulate - "American Consulate General, Mumbai”
Chennai/Hyderabad/Kolkata Consulate - “U.S. Consulate General, Chennai’’ (Kolkata and Hyderabad as applicable)”
The Visa Application fee (MRV Fee) and VFS Service Charge is payable at designated HDFC Banks. Visa Application Fee (MRV Fee) is payable in cash or by DD/HDFC Bank cheque favouring “US Embassy - Visa Fees”. VFS Service Charge is payable in cash or by DD/HDFC Bank cheque favouring "HDFC Bank a/c VFS ". DDs issued by cooperative banks are not accepted. You are required to submit a clear photocopy of the first page (bio page) of your current passport to the bank when making your payment. The bank will issue you a visa fee receipt in duplicate which will have a 10 digit barcode number affixed on it. You require this barcode number to schedule your interview appointment. Please note, you are required to wait for one working day from the date of purchase of your visa fee receipt before you can use it for scheduling your interview appointment. If you are an Indian citizen resident in the U.S., to obtain a Visa Fee Receipt from HDFC Bank, please fax a copy of your passport’s data page to the person in India assisting you. That person will have to submit the fax to HDFC Bank in order to get a fee receipt issued. The above fees are not refundable. You must appear for Visa Interview within 1 year (365 days) from the date you purchased your fee receipt from HDFC Bank. If you do not appear for an Interview within one year after the purchase of your fee receipt, it will no longer be valid. The receipt is deemed as utilized once the interview has taken place, and cannot be used to make a subsequent appointment. After you have paid the application fee, please keep the HDFC Bank fee receipt for your records to carry for submission at the Embassy / Consulate, on the day of your interview. You will be required to submit the Embassy copy (blue or green copy as applicable).Other Fees (If applicable)
Important: we recommend students must check the appointment availability paying the visa application and service fee
The photo of each visa applicant must measure:
Applicants applying at the U.S. Consulate, Mumbai need to submit their Application Packet to VFS Application Centre – HYDERABAD a minimum of 3 working days prior to the scheduled appointment date and carry the Additional Supporting Documents at the time of the interview
All students should
Be well prepared and well informed about the University, program of study, costs, ongoing research in the respective departments; sum up your educational objectives.
Be able to justify his/her choice of studying in the United States and how it would help in pursuing a career, back home in India.
Demonstrate strong economic, social and cultural ties with one's home country.
Be aware of the sponsors' (preferably parents) vocation, income and nature of work.
Be well acquainted with one's educational qualifications, University, college and credentials from India.
Finally be able to demonstrate that he/she has sufficient funds currently available to pay the entire first year of study, and that funds will be available for all additional years until the course of study is to be completed.
The visa officer is looking for students who are honest (do not beat around the bush or cook up stories), well prepared (no parroting), motivated and confident (not over confident), Spontaneous (spontaneity comes only when you are well prepared), articulate (does not mean you should speak in slang or put on an accent), clarity in communication, and projecting positive body language (no nervous behaviour like fidgeting, yawning, chatting, etc). A student should be able to justify as to "why he/she deserves to secure a student visa".