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What The New US Student Visa Restrictions Means For International Students

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Like you must have already heard, the US government is making some harsh restrictions with international student visas.Visa

The country is proposing a new regulatory plan to severely restrict international and exchange students visas to only two years.


The 59 affected countries of which most are African include Nigeria, Ghana, Ethiopia, Philippines, and other countries in Asia.


Students from countries the US consider sponsors of terrorism like Iran, North Korea, Syria or Sudan also face the two-year limit.

According to the Department of Homeland Security, the new rule is to discourage overstay. It is also to beef up security within the country and prevent visa fraud.

A key goal of shifting aliens in F status from D/S to admission for a fixed time period is to provide pre-defined time periods for immigration officers to evaluate whether a nonimmigrant has maintained his or her status.

If an immigration officer finds that an alien violated his or her status prior to or during the course of an EOS adjudication and denies the EOS request, the alien generally would begin accruing unlawful presence the day after issuance of the denial” their statement read.

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What this means for international students of affected countries.

Generally, there’s no hard expiration date for international students. The visa granted is supposed to last until your studies are completed. The new rule, however, comes with a four-year expiration date on F-1 visas for international students. It allows for a 2-year language study year and another 2 years of studies. There is also very minimal grounds for visa extension application.


Students visas will be limited to only 2 years to students from countries suspected to sponsor terrorism ( Iran, North Korea, Pakistan), countries with over 10 % overstay rate, schools yet to be accredited and schools that do not use E-verify.


It is not clear if and when this new rule will take effect. This is because of the imminent election and possible change in government.


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