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F-1- Student Visas

F-1 - Student Visas

The F-1 visa enables one to enter the U.S. as a full-time student. The student must have received prior acceptance at a U.S. government approved and accredited college or university, academic high school, elementary school, or other approved academic institution. The selected program or course of study must culminate in a degree, diploma, or certificate.

Prior to beginning studies, the student must apply for approval by the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS). The student must also be able to document evidence of financial support during the course of their studies.

When a student enters the U.S. on an F-1 visa, he/she is generally admitted for the duration of his/her studies. That means that the student may legally stay in the U.S. as long as he/she is attending the approved course of studies, even if his/her F-1 visa expires before studies have been completed.

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Statutory authorization for this type of non-immigrant visa can be found in Section 101(a)(15)(F)(i) of the Immigration and Nationality Act at the following link: http://www.uscis.gov/propub/ProPubVAP.jsp?dockey=c9fef57852dc066cfe16a4cb816838a4.
The requirements are further detailed in 8 CFR § 214.2(f), and available at: http://edocket.access.gpo.gov/cfr_2008/janqtr/pdf/8cfr214.2.pdf.

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