Why study in the USA

Not only does the USA have more than 5,300 universities across the country, it also boasts of some of the top universities in the world.

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7 Reasons to study in the USA

Not only does the USA have more than 5,300 universities across the country, it also boasts of some of the top universities in the world. American universities and colleges offer a wide range of degrees and courses in all academic fields. You will find excellent programs at the undergraduate and graduate level of study. These degrees are recognized and accepted around the world for their excellence. In fact, 5 of the top 10 and 29 of the top 100 universities are located in the USA as per the QS World University rankings 2020.

Colleges in America offer an extensive number of courses across programs.  Additionally, they offer students the option to tailor which courses to take in their program as per their career and academic goals.

American universities are world leaders in teaching students to use the latest technology. You will find labs with equipment that are used extensively in the industry.   This results in highly employable graduates.

American universities literally welcome lakhs of international students each year, they are well aware of the challenges they face. To help international students adjust to life in the USA, universities conduct multiple orientation programs. These cover a host of topics including how you can integrate culturally and cope with the academics. Further, most universities have an International Students Office whose purpose is to assist students throughout their program; on any query they may have.

American culture is actually a mixture of several cultures given the number of immigrants the country absorbs each year.  You’ll get the opportunity to mingle with students from several countries and learn about their culture and perspective not just in the class but by participating in several extracurricular activities on your campus. Indulge in a pottery class and unleash your creativity or in a dance club. If you are an aspiring writer, join the college magazine team – there’s ample opportunity for students to develop holistically in the USA.

Students are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week on campus during the semester and up to 40 hours per week during vacations.  With this policy, students can earn anywhere between $9,000 and $20,000 annually – more than enough to cover your living cost when you study.

Unlike India, universities in the USA admit students more than once a year i.e. they have multiple admission intakes. Most universities and colleges in the US offer two intakes – fall and spring. For the fall intake, classes usually begin in September, while for the spring intake, classes begin in January. A handful of universities also have a summer intake for which classes commence in April. Most Indian students opt for the fall intake since the timeline for applications and commencement of classes fit well with the completion of school or under-graduate programs in India. Also, universities admit most of their students, and provide the largest number of scholarships in the fall intake.

Cost of Education in USA

Studying abroad can be expensive. However, planning in advance will help you manage your living expenses more effectively.  This starts with understanding how much you will need to pay for your education. The primary driver of cost is tuition fees. The tuition fees you pay will depend on the following factors:

  1. Your level of study: Doctoral and postgraduate programs are more expensive than undergraduate programs. The fee range is as per the table below:
  2. What you study: Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics, Management and Medicine programs are more expensive than programs in the humanities, education and arts.
  3. The type of university you go to: Since public universities receive funding from the government, they are relatively cheaper than private universities.
  4. The program length: Shorter programs are naturally cheaper. For instance, a 1 year master’s program is cheaper than 2 years master’s program.
Level Annual Tuition Fee Range
Doctoral DegreeUSD 28,000 – USD 55,000
Postgraduate (Master’s) Degree USD 20,000 – USD 30,000
Undergraduate (Bachelor’s) Degree USD 20,000 – USD 40,000

In addition to this, students incur an annual cost of living between USD 6,000 and USD 15,000 per year. The amount depends on the city / town you stay in, whether you live on campus or off campus and on if you stay alone or with roommates. The cost of living mentioned includes accommodation, groceries, social activities, books and supplies, transportation, personal expenses, and incidentals.

 

You don’t have to fund your entire education on your own. There are several scholarships that you can apply to and many financial institutions that specialize in providing education loans at low interest rates to students.

Visa Requirements for the USA

Students who wish to study in the US for a degree / diploma program will need the F1 Visa. While applying for this visa, you will need:

  1. A passport that is valid for at least six months beyond your period of stay in the U.S. (unless exempt by country-specific agreements)
  2. Two photographs in the requested format
  3. Acceptance at an institution in the US i.e. your Form I-20
  4. GRE / TOEFL / IELTS Score Reports if you have taken any of these tests
  5. Undergraduate transcripts and your Degree / Provisional Degree Certificate
  6. A filled DS-160 form and a print out of its confirmation page
  7. SEVIS fee receipt after paying the SEVIS fees
  8. Visa Interview appointment letter
  9. Proof of funds for your education and stay as evidenced by bank statements from the past 3 years, salary slips from the past three months or loan approval letters