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Student-visa seekers make a beeline for US consulate

Posted on June 28, 2013
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More than 750 students flocked to the US consulate, Mumbai, in celebration of Student Day on Wednesday. The event was dedicated to interviewing students for F1 and J1non-immigrant visas. Acting consul-chief Aaron Hellman was present at the event along with Public Affairs Officer, Anne Graimes.

With an estimated nine percent increase in the number of student applications to US higher educational institutions, the room was full of aspiring students.

Acting consul-chief Aaron Hellman said most student applications received are for master’s degree programmes. “Students are growing increasingly keen on pursuing their bachelor’s degrees at American institutions. While there are more number of applicants for postgraduate courses,” he said. Hellman also pointed that many students are opting to pursue their master’s degrees in science or courses like architecture and interior designing. With the increasing number of students from India who apply to US universities, the concern around the safety of students is prevalent.

Public affairs officer Anne Graimes assured students that campus safety is an important factor at US colleges. “There are several measures taken into account when looking at the safety of a campus,” said Graimes. “Some colleges have their own security force and are easily accessible by students. They even have security officers who can escort students back to their dorms when they have night classes,” she added.The myriad of academic fields and training programs within US universities have played a major role in attracting Indian students.

Honey Ramrakhiya plans on pursuing her Masters in biotechnology at University of Texas, San Antonio. “The opportunities and scope for such a field are brighter in the US,” she said. Sixteen-year-old AashnaDesai traveled from Gujarat for her interview. Desai has secured her admission at University of Massachusetts, Boston and plans on graduating with a Bachelors degree in psychology.

“The visa process is extremely smooth and you are guaranteed help at every stage,” said Desai. Hellman said the visa application process for students was revamped recently toindian-students-form-the-second-largest-group/indian-students-form-the-second-largest-group/ simplify it for candidates. “We introduced an offsite center for the applicants to finish the initial process of visa application and we have also introduced a one-time fee process, so that students don’t end up paying fees at different phases,” said Hellman.

He added that the consulate has also introduced an interview waiver program for selected students. The Consulate has started initiatives to advocate the application process as well as to address safety and academic concerns that students may have.

The outreach program involves the active participation of US universities that visit India in order to build on academic databases available to prospective students.

For more news and updates, assistance with your visa needs or for a Free Assessment of your profile for Immigration or Work Visa’s just visit www.y-axis.com

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