Immigration to the US has become a great concern for many across the world fleeing from war or simply looking for a nation where they can make a new start. Once a country that was known for “Give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breathe free” has adapted an anti-immigration mentality across much of the nation.
This has affected millions to the point that international authorities are warning people across the world to avoid the United States now if they’re considering immigrating to a new country. But what about international students looking for studying in the States?
There Has Been a Sharp Decrease in International Student Visas
This isn’t because fewer students are applying, but because of a sharp shift in international student policy with the State Department having issued seventeen percent fewer student visas in 2017. It has universities worried about future enrollment as this decrease could have a major effect on their bottom lines.
The problems don’t end there, either, as international students in the USA have also seen a rise in the fees and tuition. As of 2016, an international student studying in the USA pays almost five times what US Citizens paid in tuition and fees. This alone is likely to scare international students from applying to US-based universities.
Upon arriving in the United States to study, if they’ve managed to get a Visa, they then face considerably stricter rules on what they can and can’t do there.
Harder to Get In
Before an international student even arrives in the US, first they must apply, and new powers granted to the USCIS (the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) allows greater powers in denying Student Visas for those who have not provided sufficient information. It also allows for them to reject a candidate without having to show cause.
For those applying, they first have to prove that they can pay for tuition and all living expenses. Of course, they will have to pay for the other their needs like, for example, online writing service help from professionals such as https://researchpapers.io/pay-to-write-a-research-paper-now/ or some others. But it’s just a little money comparing to the tuition and living expenses. Besides, they must have an original, signed I-20 Form and make it clear as to what field they want to study in and for what degree.
Finally, they have to show that they have sufficient ties to their home country to prove that they will return once they’re done their studies. They have to show that they own property, a business, or dependents that require their return to their native country,
This more difficult application process has led to a ten percent drop in applications showing that these new policies are having a definite effect.
Harder to Stay
Students have to maintain a full course load, work no more than part-time hours while going to school, and those jobs have to be on-campus. If they violate these conditions, their Student Visa can be revoked. In addition to that, legislation that passed last year makes it easier to deport international students. If they are deported, then they can face anywhere from a three to a ten-year ban on re-entering the United States effectively, meaning that once they’re out, for any reason, they’ll likely have to continue their education elsewhere.
While in the US, students will likely find themselves being tracked by SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System), which is a counter-terrorist program aimed at international students. It’s useful for an international student to know this information and to keep it in mind.
There are also new policy changes that restrict the number of years that a foreign student can spend in the country. This new policy is especially restrictive to graduate students who need to do research and graduate Chinese students who now have an imposed one-year limit for engineering, math (STEM), science, and technology studies. The purpose of this is based on a suspicion that they and other foreign students could gain access to “sensitive” technology that could be used for a military purpose.
Policies are Retroactive
This change can also affect students already in the U.S. on Student Visas for one main reason: the new policy plans on making it retroactive. This means that people who have been studying in the US for years could find themselves out of status and forced to leave the country immediately.
Because they would already be on US soil at the time that they’re out of status, they are automatically subject to harsh penalties in addition to being deported. They could be forbidden to step foot in the United States for a minimum of ten years and that punishment could mean a lifetime ban.
International Students Must Report In
Even if they’re not Out of Status, they still have to routinely report on their status to SEVIS. If they move or change degrees they have to report it. If they don’t, their Visa can be revoked and they can be banned from entry into the States. Indeed, there are so many issues with this policy that a student can violate policy without knowing it! For instance, switching to another university is considered unauthorized activity at which point the student must leave the country.
The story doesn’t quite end there either, the new rules for unlawful presence in the US mean that a Student Visa ends the day after an international student quits or graduates. So, once that hat is thrown in the air, it’s straight to an airplane.
In conclusion, the effect of the most recent administration on international student policy is hard to deny as being anything else but profound. There will likely be debates for years to come on whether or not these changes will have a positive outcome for the United States. It is, however, undeniable that the effects of these new policies are having a negative effect on international enrollment and Student Visa numbers.