M1 Visa Explained

M1 Visa Explained

What is a M-1 Visa?

Students who wish to pursue vocational studies in the United States must apply for the M1 visa. Vocational studies include cooking classes, technical courses, mechanical classes, aviation school, and cosmetology.

Because the M1 has no limit on the number of people who can apply, any student who fits the qualifications could be awarded a visa.

Who Can Apply for the M1 Visa?

Not everyone is eligible for the M1 visa, which allows them to pursue a vocational degree. These requirements must be satisfied in order to apply for and qualify for an M1 visa.

Be accepted at an SEVP institution: —M1 students are admitted at a number of vocational and non-degree-granting institutions, according to the Student Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP). You must apply for and be accepted into one of these universities to be eligible to apply for the M1 visa. You may have a list of colleges you want to attend, but before you apply, check sure they qualify for the M1 visa. The school will enroll you in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) and issue you a Form I-20, Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status, once you have been accepted.

Have high English proficiency—International students should be able to communicate well in English. Their English proficiency should be sufficient to allow them to understand and communicate in the manner required by educational institutions. They should be able to follow lectures and discuss class concepts. A standardized English proficiency test, such as the TOEFL or the IELTS, can be used to demonstrate English proficiency.

Prove strong ties to your home country—After you finish your studies, you are expected to return to your home country. That is why you should use property records, an apartment lease, a foreign address, and familial ties to demonstrate strong relationships. If you don't provide adequate proof, the US Embassy may deny your visa on the grounds that you desire to live in the US permanently.

Be able to finance your education and stay in the United States—To obtain an M1 visa, you must demonstrate that you will be able to meet your expenses while studying and living in the United States. Because your I-20 form includes an estimate of your expenses for a year, you should submit financial records demonstrating that you have that amount on hand. If your dependents are accompanying you to the United States, your financial status should be much better, demonstrating that you can also afford their stay.

What Are the M-1 Visa Program Requirements?

You should collect the following documents when applying for an M1 visa:

  • A valid passport for another six months after your visa expires.

  • Your confirmation page for the DS-160.

  • The letter confirming your visa appointment.

  • One photo for the US Visa.

  • Receipts showing that you've paid your fees.

  • One copy of your original I-20 form

  • Proof of your academic credentials, such as:

    • ​Diplomas and degrees

    • Transcripts.

    • Scores on standardized tests, for example.

  • Evidence of your financial stability, such as a bank statement

    • Last three years' bank statements

    • Tax information from the last three years.

    • Loans to help you pay for your stay in the United States (if applicable).

    • Provide all required details for a scholarship for your education in the United States (if applicable).

    • If you will be supported by a person in the United States, you must submit Form

    • I-134, Affidavit of Support, as well as the person's bank and tax return

    • information for the last three years.

How to Apply for an M1 Visa?

The M1 visa application procedure is quite similar to the F-1 visa application procedure. The following are the actions you must take to apply for an M1 visa:

  • Fill out the I-20 form.

  • Fill out the DS-160 form online.

  • The visa application fee must be paid.

  • Pay the SEVIS I-901 application fee.

  • Prepare for your interview.

  • Create a document file.

  • Attend your scheduled interview.

Get your I-20 Form:

The I-20 form will be given to you once you have been accepted into the vocational school of your choice. You can start the application process with that form.

Submit DS-160 form online:

The first form you must submit online is the DS-160 form. You should fill in any pertinent information about your background, goals in the United States, and program of study. When you submit the form, you will receive a confirmation code and page, which you will need for the interview and document file later on.

Pay the visa application fee:

The M1 visa requires a $160 application fee. This is a non-refundable cost, which means you will not be reimbursed if you do not receive the visa. Aside from this charge, extra fees may apply depending on the Embassy to which you are applying. You may also be required to pay a visa issuance or reciprocity fee, which is established by the US Embassy, if you are from certain countries. Keep all receipts that show you paid all fees.

Pay the SEVIS I-901 fee

Because all international students in the United States are required to register with SEVIS, there is a charge that must be paid. The M1 visa's SEVIS I-901 fee is $200. Pay and retain the receipt since you will need it later.

Schedule your interview

For your visa appointment, you will need to schedule an interview. Try to do this as soon as possible, as US embassies have a heavy workload and may take some time to locate you an appointment. You will receive an interview appointment letter after you arrange the interview, which you must attach to your documents file.

Compile your document file

All relevant forms should be included in your document file. When you go to your visa appointment, you should bring it with you.

Attend your interview

Attend your visa interview at the conclusion. Prepare all of your paperwork and be ready to answer questions during the interview. The M1 visa interview will focus on your reasons for visiting the United States, your financial condition, and your ties to your native country. You will be requested to prove your link to any dependents you bring, such as a spouse or children.

What Can I do With an M1 Visa in the USA?

On an M1 visa, students can pursue their vocational studies full-time and get an associate's degree or another form of degree. They can receive a driver's license, create a bank account, change schools during the first six months of their program, get healthcare, and work under specified conditions.

M1 pupils, on the other hand, are not permitted to:

  • Work full-time outside of the university.

  • Part-time students finish their programs.

  • After six months in their program, they can change or transfer to another institution.

  • Continue their studies in the United States to obtain a Bachelor's degree or another form of degree.

There are also significant distinctions between the F-1 and M1 visas. F-1 visas allow students to pursue academic and degree-related studies, such as a Bachelor's or Master's degree. They also allow students to transfer to any school at any time and to pursue practical training outside of the classroom. Language classes are available to F-1 visa holders, but not to M1 visa holders.

M1 Visa Processing Time

The M1 visa takes only a few days to process. Processing takes place prior to your visa interview. There are times when you will receive a response right after your visa interview, with the interviewer either congratulating you or explaining why you were denied. However, you can anticipate a processing time of at least four weeks in most cases. Do not be concerned if it takes longer than expected. Most likely, the Embassy was overburdened and couldn't answer as quickly.

How Long Can I Stay in the US With an M1 Visa?

The duration of your visa is determined by the length of your vocational study. A visa may be granted for the entire duration of your studies or for a shorter period. Your Form I-20, on the other hand, is only good for a year. This implies you'll have to replace it every year. The M1 visa and Form I-20 can be renewed for up to three years.

You will need to request for an extension if your visa does not cover the entire period of your study. You can do so by submitting Form I-539, Application to Extend or Change Nonimmigrant Status, along with your Form I-20 to the USCIS.

Can I Change my Status to Another US Visa?

Furthermore, you have the option of changing your status to another non-immigrant visa. However, you won't be able to move to a F visa, and transferring to an H-1B visa will be tough if you'll be working using abilities you learned as an M1 student.

Many people wish to convert their M1 visa to a Green Card. This can be tough because an employment-based green card requires remarkable ability, marriage in the United States, or a minimum investment of $500,000 in the US economy. As a result, few persons transition from an M1 visa to a Green Card.

Am I Allowed to Work in the United States With an M1 Visa?

The M1 visa permits for certain limited employment. You may only work on campus part-time during the academic year and full-time during the summer. You are only authorized to work for a maximum of 6 months. To be permitted to labor

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