09 July, 2020
4 Min Read
F-1 and M-1 Visa Holders in USA
Part of: GS-II- USA Visa issue (PT-MAINS-PERSONALITY TEST)
Recently, the USA has announced that F-1 and M-1 visa holders who are planning to take online only models will not be allowed to stay in the USA. Many universities in the USA are planning to shift all their classes online for the fall semester due to Covid-19 pandemic.
Fall semester starts in late August and ends in late December or early January whereas the Spring semester begins in January and ends in early May.
***F-1 visas are issued to study in the USA for full-time students whereas M-1 visas are issued to students engaging in vocational or non-academic studies.
The announcement comes weeks after the USA President suspended H1-B highly skilled worker visas through the end of the year. Most of these visas go to Indian citizens each year.
If alternative measures are not opted then these students may face immigration consequences including, but not limited to, the initiation of removal proceedings. It is a difficult situation for students as international travel already faces disruption due to Covid-19.
Available Alternatives : Affected students may switch to visitor status but it is not a long term solution as visitor status is short term and there is no guarantee that it will be approved.
Considering the unprecedented pandemic scenario, the USA can amend the regulation for F-1 and M-1 students. The one-size-fits-all approach will create more havoc and complexities not only in USA administration but also in diplomatic relations with countries like India and China.
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