Tuesday, June 22, 2004

Foreign Students and Visa Issues

For a long time, Lance Fortnow has been warning us about the problems facing foreign students and scholars (of which your humble blogger is one) trying to visit the US, stay here, and travel to scholarly meetings. Nitish Korula, an Indian student who recently got admission to the Ph.D program at UIUC, has been chronicling his suffering as he navigates the student visa process.

Although this may not be news to those of us in research/academics, it's nice to see discussion of this problem spreading beyond the confines of academe. Today at Talking Points Memo, one of the most widely read blogs on the Web, John Judis discusses this issue.

Lance mentioned the cold war and how countries tried to keep their scientists from coming here: this quote is from Judis's post:

During the Cold War, American officials discovered that one of the best ways to promote democratic capitalism at the expense of communism was by luring foreign students to American colleges. Some of these foreign graduates returned home to become the leaders of reform movements in their countries. Others stayed in the United States and contributed their skills to the great postwar boom. The same reasoning that prevailed during the Cold War should prevail during the war on terror. The United States should be eager, one would imagine, to expose students from abroad to democracy and religious pluralism, as well as to take advantage of their skills.


  1. Hi guys,

    This is something related to the guys who already got their F1 visa and did not travel.
    Ppl who did not travel within 90 days from the issue date of the visa can no more travel on the same visa.

    They need to take a fresh visa for their further travels. So don't feel comfortable with the old visa coz the POE will not allow u to enter with that visa.

    Hope this information might be useful to u....


    Posted by bhanu

  2. Hi,,

    I have a F1 Visa and it was issued in 2002 for my MS. I was in US for about 2 weeks prior to my classes, Unfortunately my father had to undergo a major heart surgery and so i had to abandon my plans and immidiately come back to India. I was not in a position to defer my I20 and pursue my MS due to my requirement with my parents during that time. Now i plan to do my MS and my visa is valid up to 2007. I wanted to know if its required for me to go personally again to the consulate again with a fresh I20 or can International Student Services form the College which is issuing me a I20 furnish my details to SEVIS directly.
    Please advice me.
    Eagerly awaiting your reply. It will be helpful if you could give me the options if there are more than one.

    Thanks & Regards,


    Posted by Swaroop

  3. Swaroop,
    to be honest, I have no clue. You'd have to talk with your international students office about this. 

    Posted by suresh

  4. Hello,

    I have a friend in India who wants to do her Master's in Biotechnology and is looking in the DC/MD/VA areas.

    Can someone shed some light and caveats as she starts this process? Mainly, what she needs to be careful of during her visit to USCIS and getting her F-1 Visa? Prompt response will be greatly appreciated.

    Thanks - Bye 

    Posted by Kumar

  5. hi guys i am from Hyderabad,i wanted to find about Ms.Usha Thyagarajan who was a consultant located somewhere around Hotel GreenPark,Ameerpet,if anyone finds details about the same please respond.  

    Posted by Anonymous


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