The F1 visa interview is an important part of your F1 visa application. First, what is an F1 visa?
A F1 visa is required for study in the US. An F1 visa is needed for all academic high schools, universities and colleges in the US from foreign nationals. The difference between F1 visa and M1 visa is that the M1 visa is for “vocational or other recognized non-academic institutions, other than a language training program” according to the US Department of State. All other studies, especially academic studies, are covered by the F1 visa.
The reason why we’ll cover the F1 visa interview today is because the F1 visa is the most common student visa available, and the interview is the hardest part of the application. If you fail your F1 visa interview, you might not pass your whole student visa application.
In order to succeed in your visa interview, you need the following tips: making use of certified translations, having strong ties to your home country, providing proof of financial capability, and providing supplemental documentation. Then we’ll briefly touch on how to find a certified translator for your documents. For international students from non-English countries getting a student visa to study in USA is a little challenging. They may face a language issue while the interview process.
So here are some F1 Visa Interview Tips for Students in non-English Countries:
#1 Make Use of Certified Translations
Of course, if you’re planning to send in documents from your native country to the USA, you’ll need them to be in English. That’s where certified translations come in.
Certified translations will assure that all your birth certificate, transcripts, academic records, letters of recommendations, and other documents are certified translations of the original. Certified translation services will guarantee documents sealed with accredited authorizations.
This is necessary for certain academic institutions, such as American University in Washington DC, who only accept certified translations and nothing else.
To prepare for your F1 visa interview and application, you must have the documents ready, certified, and prepared. Certified translation services may be able to help you in this regard.
#2 Have Strong Ties to Your Home Country
At your visa interview, you may be faced with the questions: “Do you have a job offer after you study in the US?” or you may be asked to provide answers to financial assets you have in your country of citizenship. You may also be asked if you have strong family ties in your home country.
Another question that’s frequently asked is: After you graduate, will you return home or will you stay in the United States? You have to prove intent to return home, according to Boston University.
This is because you must prove strong ties to your home country, before studying abroad, to make sure that you’re using the student visa for your studies, and not for migration.
So, you might have to provide financial documents like a bank statement. Again, if your country of residence is not an English-speaking country, it may be necessary to use certified translation services to translate your financial documents. Which brings us to the next point.
#3 Provide Proof of Financial Capability
Not only do you have to prove that you’re financially well in your home country, you have to prove you have the financial capabilities in order to study in the US. You may be asked, “How are you funding the entire duration of your education, including tuition, room and board, transportation, and all other expenses?”
In this case, it’s best to have all your financial documents handy. And if you’re using certified translation services, make sure they’re all certified translations from your home language to US English. Go with a certified translator that can guarantee acceptance into your university.
#4 Provide Your Employment History
Your main purpose should be to study, and not to work before or after graduation. If you have an employment history in your home country, show that as well during your visa interview. This is used as a proof that your sole purpose to apply for the F1 visa is to study.
You must be able to clearly explain your reasons for returning home after your program. Maybe you already have a job offer waiting for you back home. Make sure to mention that as well.
Although it may be necessary for you to work while on a student visa, on or off campus, which you could mention in your interview, your main motivation must be to study.
#5 Give Supplemental Documentation
You must know your specific documentation requirements for your study abroad program as well as your student visa application. Certain supporting documents necessary can be scholarship letters, admission letters from your school, and letters of recommendation. You have to prove to the consulate that you were granted acceptance into the program.
You may also have to prove that you have the financial means to support yourself in your program. That means to present the supplemental documents in the form of financial documents to the visa interview officer. These documents can be a good credit report, a bank statement with funds, scholarships, and/or proof of assistantships in your study abroad programs.
How to Find a Certified Translator for Your Documents to Help in F1 Visa Interview
Finding a certified translator for your documents is not an easy task. Here are ways to find the right certified translator for your documents:
- Search the internet for a freelancer – There are many freelance translators out there on sites such as Upwork. It can be budget-friendly once you find the right translator for you.
- Search for certified translation services – These agencies will usually have the industry skills and linguistic rigor for your job. So if you find these services, make sure to compare and contrast them for accuracy, efficiency and value.
- Get referred to a certified translator – There are certified translators that people you know may know, so one way is to go through personal or professional referrals.
- Word-of-Mouth referral for a certified translator – Word of mouth is one way for a certified translator to be recognized. But you still need to look at their portfolio and past works to make sure they’re the right one.
Max Troy is the Career Counsellor as well as a passionate Author. Well, he has years of experience in the Career and Jobs industry. As a part of his career at OPTnation, he helped various OPT and CPT candidates to shape their Career. Through his knowledge and writing skill, he is contributing to the students to find the best Career advice and immigration topics. Do share the information if you like it.