Student Visas

There are two nonimmigrant visa categories for persons wishing to study in the United States. These visas are commonly known as the F and M visas.

F-1 Student Visa

The F-1 Visa (Academic Student) allows you to enter the United States as a full-time student at an accredited college, university, seminary, conservatory, academic high school, elementary school, or other academic institution or in a language training program. You must be enrolled in a program or course of study that culminates in a degree, diploma, or certificate and your school must be authorized by the U.S. government to accept international students.

F-1 students may not work off-campus during the first academic year, but may accept on-campus employment subject to certain conditions and restrictions. There are various programs available for F-1 students to seek off-campus employment, after the first academic year. After they have been studying for one academic year, F-1 students may engage in three types of off-campus employment.

M-1 Student Visa

The M-1 visa (Vocational Student) category includes students in vocational or other nonacademic programs, not including language training, which falls under the F-1 visa.

F-1 students may not work off-campus during the first academic year, but may accept on-campus employment subject to certain conditions and restrictions after the first academic year. After they have been studying for one academic year, F-1 students may engage in three types of off-campus employment; there are various programs available for F-1 students to seek off-campus employment.

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