Study in USA Guide for Indian Students

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Study in USA

USA has the largest economy, best military, an impeccable administrative system, and dominant cultural influence in the world. Home to the highest number of outbound students across the globe, USA tops the list of every study abroad aspirant. Call it the excellent education system or the diverse ethnicities, it has to offer increases the number of candidates flying there for higher education. It also has the maximum number of top-ranked universities. Let us explore the opportunities study in USA has got for you! 

Latest News Updates 

  • Under the new guidelines, students applying to US universities for the upcoming September intake 2021 are eligible for studying in the USA at their respective universities with proper documentation.
  • International students from red-listed countries including India are exempted from the travel ban under the National Interest Exemption as issued by the US administration.
  • The US visa offices are currently streamlining F1 and M1 visas to ensure safe travel for international students hoping to start their academic year this fall.
  • International students with F-1 and M-1 visas can directly travel to the United States immediately to begin a qualifying academic program within 30 days of the program start date (August 1, 2021, or later). 
  • International students planning to live and study on campus in the USA must be vaccinated. The decision is in light of ensuring a safe and healthy learning environment for all students. 
  • Some universities like Rutgers University in the US are in the process of arranging vaccine campuses to vaccinate incoming international students while others are actively approving vaccines administered to the international students in their home countries. 

COVID-19 Response in USA

  • According to official data, the USA has fully vaccinated over 40% of its population to ensure a safe and secure environment for its students as well as the incoming international students.
  • USA universities are currently enforcing COVID-19 guidelines on all their campuses to curtail the spread of the novel coronavirus. 

Why Study in USA?

Finding an answer to Why is it a good idea to study in USA? Let us make it easier for you! Enlisted below are the benefits of choosing USA over other countries to study abroad:

  • USA Universities & Degrees Have Worldwide Recognition
  • Jump Into An Excellent Academic System
  • Internationally Focused Study
  • Encouragement Towards Technology
  • Diversity
  • Remarkable Support Facilities
  • The USA has ranked in the first place for education across the globe.
  • It’s already ahead as compared to other countries in the field of technology, education & research.
  • Get involved in advantageous internship programs.
  • You will get a chance to improve your English communication to a native level. 
  • You can also cut out your academic expenses with the help of scholarships provided by them.

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Intakes in USA 

International universities offer multiple intakes through which they allow international students to become a part of them. In USA these intakes are available for three terms such as fall, spring and summer. Generally, fall intake is considered to be the most popular among the Indian students as it fits best with the Indian academic sessions. Majority of the programs are open in both fall and spring intakes whereas comparatively lesser programs are available for summer intake. Let us take a detailed look at all the three intakes. 

Intakes  Duration
Fall Intake August to December 
Spring Intake January to April 
Summer Intake May to August

Do You Know: Martin Luther King Jr. Day, St. Patrick’s Day, Memorial Day, Independence Day, Halloween, Christmas, Thanksgiving Day, and New Year’s Day are some of the most popular days celebrated in the USA.

Eligibility Criteria

Candidates wanting to study in the USA must ensure they are eligible to pursue a particular course before starting the application process. Specific requirements might vary as per the level of degree one signs up for and the university.

  • Students applying to the USA after graduating 12th must provide proof of completion along with a minimum percentage of marks that is required by the educational institute.
  • Students applying after completing their bachelors must have the preferred education background and the minimum marks for admission to their preferred course and university in the USA.
  • In order to study in the USA, students have to qualify in certain entrance exams. These exams are essential part of application process and used to determine the candidate’s eligibility for the programme she/he has applied for:
Undergraduate Postgraduate
English Proficiency Exam IELTS / TOEFL / PTE IELTS / TOEFL
Subject Proficiency Exam SAT Exam/ ACT Exam GMAT / GRE

Do You Know? Out of every 10 best universities in the world, 6 are based in the USA.

Cost of Studying in USA

The cost of studying is an essential part of every student’s study abroad plan. Along with the tuition fee, a candidate also has to manage living expenses on their own. USA is an expensive study destination as the living expenses can be too high. Depending upon the location of university one picks, the overall expenditure varies.

If your chosen study destination lies in the suburban or rural area the overall cost of living would automatically come down in comparison to urban campuses. Here is a table that shows the average cost of studying in the US: 

Degree Type Private University  Government University Community College
Undergraduate $32,000 (INR 23,00,00) $24,000 (INR 17,80,000) $200 Per Credit (INR 15,000)
Postgraduate $35,000 (INR 26,00,00) $30,000 (INR 22,50,000) $250 Per Credit (INR 18,500)
MBA $60,000 (INR 45,00,00) $48,000 (INR 36,00,000)

Most of the leading universities are located in cities like Cambridge, New Haven, Boston, New York, New Haven, etc. Cost of pursuing an MBA can cost around INR 21 Lakh whereas a Master’s can cost around 16 Lakhs per year. However, for professional courses like BE students can expect the expense to be around 20 Lakhs per year. The cost of living in USA will totally depend upon the city, type of accommodation and an overall lifestyle that you choose.

Scholarships in USA 

The USA offers quality education but in return, it is mandatory for candidates to pay the due fees of courses. Often the aspirants willing to study in USA refrain due to the high tuition fee charges of the universities. To help students stuck in similar situations we have listed a few popular scholarships that aim to empower Indian students to study in USA- 

Scholarships in USA  Awards  Eligibility Criteria
Tata Scholarship for Cornell University  The entire tuition fee for 8-semester courses will be covered. -Must be a resident of Indian origin

 -Should be eligible for a need-based scholarship

-Candidate must have been accepted any of the Cornell University UG programs 

Rotary International Ambassadorial Scholarships  Academic Year Ambassadorial Scholarship: $25,000 [INR 18,50,000]

Multi-year Ambassadorial Scholarship: $12,000 [INR 8,89,000]

Cultural Ambassadorial Scholarship: $12,000 to $19,000 [INR 8,89,000- 14,09,000]

-The candidate must be a citizen of the country where Rotary clubs are located 

-Must have been completed 2 years of college-level coursework or its equivalent

-The initial application of the candidate must be submitted through rotary clubs

Fullbright Scholarships for Indian Students Multiple Awards -Excellent academic and professional record

-A good score in English language proficiency exam

-Applicants for Fullbright are not allowed to apply for the green card -Must be an Indian national 

All major scholarships available for studying in USA are- 

  • Chevron Scholarship ($ 2,000 or INR 1,50,000)
  • Ivy Parker Memorial Scholarship ($ 2,000 or INR 1,50,000)
  • SeflScore International Scholarship ($5,000 or INR 3,40,000)
  • Western Union Foundation Global Scholarship Program ($25,000 or INR 1,85,000)
  • RD Sethna Loan Scholarship ($10,000 or INR 7,40,000)
  • Asian Women in Business ($ 25,000 or INR 18,50,000)
  • Global Student Scholarship ($ 1,000 or INR 75.000)

A Stanford student has won a medal at every Olympics since 1908. Do you aspire to be the next one?

The USA is one of the most popular destinations for education tourism in the world. The country offers a plethora of courses and specializations from Accounting to Zoology, students depending upon their interest and capability can opt for any of these programmes and get an opportunity to study at some of the best universities in the world. Here are some popular courses in the USA

MBA Architecture Computer Science Artificial Intelligence
Physiotherapy Accounting Law Data Science
Medicine  Fashion Design Political Science Psychology

Did you know? Harvard Business School in 1908 offered an MBA program to students for the first time!

Summer Programmes in USA

A large number of universities in the USA offer students a chance to experience college life through summer programmes (also called pre-college programmes) before starting a full-fledged UG programme! High school students can live on campus and avail all the unique collegiate experience in some of the best universities. Here are some universities that offer summer programmes:

  • Brown University
  • Harvard University
  • University of Michigan
  • Northwestern University
  • Stanford University
  • John Hopkins University 
  • University of Chicago

The US has the maximum number of renowned educational institutes in the world. Most of them are ranked in the top 100 universities by QS. Given below are the top 10 universities in the USA as per QS rankings 2020:

Top Universities in the USA QS World Rankings for USA 2022 THE World UniversityRankings for USA 2021
Stanford University #3 #1
Harvard University #5 #2
California Institute of Technology (Caltech) #6 #3
Massachusetts Institute of Technology #1 #4
University of California, Berkeley 32 #5
Yale University =14 #6
University of California Los Angeles 40 #11
Princeton University #20 #7
University of Chicago #10 #8
Johns Hopkins University #25 #9
University of Pennsylvania #13 #10
Columbia University #19 #12
Cornell University #21 #13

Apart from the above-mentioned universities, here are some other prominent universities of USA-

Students applying to the USA can study at top universities that pursue their chosen courses without the burden of submitting IELTS scores. Here are some popular universities that allow students to study without IELTS:

Did you know? The United States hosted over 1 million international students during the 2019–2020 academic year!

Grading System in USA Universities

Before applying to the best US universities, let’s examine the grading system popularly used by the universities:

Letter Grade GPA Percentage
A 4.0 93-100
A- 3.7 90-92
B+ 3.3 87-89
B 3.0 83-86
B- 2.7 80-82
C+ 2.3 77-79
C 2.0 73-76
C- 1.7 70-72
D+ 1.3 67-69
D 1.0 63-66
D- 0.7 60-62
F 0.0 Below 60

Admission Process to Study in USA

The process for applying to study in USA involves a bunch of important steps that must be completed within the given time period. To help you in the given process, we have devised some simple steps along with important documents that you will be needing at the respective step to study in the USA-

STEP 1: Make a list of 8-10 colleges of your choice.

STEP 2: Fill Your Application Form.

STEP 3: Collect supporting documents like academic transcripts, the result of the previous institution, English proficiency test result, CV, statement of purpose (SOP), Letter of Recommendation (LOR), and other things. We recommend you to check out the requirements section of your desired institutions.

STEP 4: Now start signing up accounts online on the website of universities to submit
your application.

STEP 5: Some universities might ask for WES evaluation (Just an evaluation which may cost $100-$160 (INR 7,500- 11,800) to ensure that you’re capable enough to study in the US) of your mark sheet. It may take 2 months to get your mark sheet evaluated

STEP 6: Once you submit all the required documents, they will inform and instruct you to pay the academic fee.

STEP 7: Now you will get an I-20 form and acceptance which will help you get a
student visa.

Student Visa to Study in USA

Here comes the most complicated part of studying in USA. So pay attention if you want the dream to study in USA to be a reality. As an international student, it is mandatory for one to have the right type of students visa to avoid any type of hassle for entering into the country. Before starting the procedure, you must first understand what there are three types of visas for Indian students:

F-1 Visa For those students who have been accepted into a full-time academic degree program at any recognized American university or college. Moreover, if any student’s study load is more than 18 hours a week, then he or she will also need this visa.
M-1 Visa This is suitable for those students who are indulging in vocational or non-academic study programs.
J-1 Visa This visa is for such students who get enrolled in an educational exchange program. In such a program, students remain enrolled at their home college or university while studying in the US. After the end of a fixed exchange agreement, students return home to get their qualification. However, if your programs are longer than 18 hours a week as an exchange student, then you have to apply for the F-1 visa. 

USA Visa Application Process

Once you have selected which type of visa fits you as per the program, the next important step in your journey of seeking overseas education in USA will be filling a timely application for it. Listed below are some simple steps along with the important documents that you will need to apply for the US visa of your choice-

  1. Collect all the essential documents like:
    • A valid passport
    • Your travel itinerary (if already purchased flights)
    • Your CV must be up to date.
    • Provide all the information about your previous education history.
    • Your SEVIS ID. SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) is a way of keeping data of all international students. Your SEVIS ID will be printed on your I-20 form. We recommend you to pay the SEVIS fee before initiating visa application. You can fill the form here: SEVIS I-901 Form
    • Letter of acceptance of the institution in which you’re going to study in USA
  2. Now after completing the above formalities, apply for the visa online here: DS-160 Visa Application Form
  3. After filling the form, print the confirmation page and bring that in interviews. You will be expected to visit in biometric and other types of interviews. 
  4. F-1 Student visas are only issued 120 days before the commencement of your course.

Note: The US Student VISA fee for Indian Students is $160 [INR 11,800].

Work Visa Conversion in USA

After completing your course, you can stay up to 60 days in the country. Thus, it is mandatory to start planning your next step right when you enter the final semester. If you plan to stay longer in the country, then as a foreign student you can only think about getting your VISA converted to H-1B. To do the same, you need to find an employer who is likely to file an employment-based permanent residency application to USCIS.

Candidates must note that, without them being hired by an American organization, it is not possible for one to secure a H 1B visa. Another way to get the VISA expended is via the Optional Practical Training after completing your undergraduate or postgraduate training course. OPT can provide you with an additional year in the country for normal courses and 2 additional years for STEM-based courses.

Do You Know: The University of Chicago holds the largest scavenger hunt in the world every year.

What are on-campus and off-campus Jobs for International Students in USA?

USA allows the native as well as Indian students to work while pursuing their academic courses. By working part-time, candidates either get a hold of the exposure they require to pursue full-time jobs or manage their finances. The US government has laid down that students can work 20 hours per week during an ongoing session where hours 40 hours a week during session breaks. To make your study in USA experience more memorable, here are some off-campus and on-campus jobs- 

On-Campus Jobs in USA:

  • Teaching Assistant
  • Library Monitor
  • Peer Tutor
  • Academic Department Assistant
  • Campus Tech Support

Off-Campus Jobs in USA: 

 It is important to note that, the US Citizenship and Immigration Services ( USCIS) only permits the students to work off-campus with the workplaces organisations that are affiliated with the institution. 

  • Store Associates 
  • Call Centre
  • Tourist Guide 
  • Language Translator or Interpreter

It is always believed that USA is the hub of life-changing career opportunities. Many students that time to opt to study in USA, often encounter career opportunities through which they can kickstart a career in the country and successfully settle down. In your research about studying in USA and its various attributes, we are here helping you with a bunch of trending careers that are in great demand in USA- 

  • Front-End Engineer
  • Java Developer
  • Product Manager 
  • Data Scientist
  • Software Engineer 
  • Speech-Language Pathologists
  • Business Development Manager 
  • Strategy Manager
  • Salesforce Developer
Study-in-USA

Best Student Cities in the USA

There are over 4000 universities spread across the state of the USA offering a wide range of courses to students from across the globe. Here are some popular student cities in the USA that will help you decide which university to pick:

  • New York
  • Boston
  • Chicago
  • San Francisco 
  • Los Angeles
  • Washington DC

Did you know? US cities were ranked amongst QS Top 20 Best Student Cities in 2019!

FAQs

How much will it cost to study in USA?

The average cost to study in USA will totally depend on the program as well as living standards you opt for. If you are about to pursue UG courses, you average tuition fee will be around INR 17,80,000- 23, 00,000. On the other hand, seeking a PG degree in the country will cost you around INR 26,00,000- 22,50,000. To know your estimated living expenses, use our cost of living calculator.

Can I study in USA for free?

Yes, it is possible to study in USA for absolutely free. There are a variety of scholarships available seeking which students can earn 100% coverage of their major expenses like Tuition Fess, Accommodation, Health Insurance, etc.

What exams are required to study in USA?

Qualifying entrance level exams are necessary when it comes to fulfilling your dream of studying abroad. For those who are willing to study in USA, it will be mandatory for you to qualify IELTS, TOEFL along with subject/ program related exams like SAT/ACT or GMAT/GRE.

Can I study in USA after 12th?

Yes, it is possible to study in USA once you have qualified class 12th. A plethora of UG courses are available in an array of traditional as well as trending fields. However, majority of the students opt to pursue STEM courses in USA. To select the best UG course, get in touch with our experts at Leverage Edu.

Is IELTS required for USA?

Yes, IELTS is one of the most prominent requirements when it comes to gear up for studying in USA. But, there are a few universities that allow admissions without undertaking the score of IELTS. To know more about how you can pursue studies in USA without IELTS, reach out to our experts at Leverage Edu.

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Want to open the door of opportunities with a plan to study in USA? It doesn’t matter where you will go after graduation, you will be respected everywhere. Let Leverage Edu help you in finding a suitable course with the help of our unique AI Tool. Signup for a free career counselling session and skyrocket your career!

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