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Thread: Visa Officers Suggestions and answers for Why visa's are being Rejected.

  1. #1
    MS in US Senior
    Join Date
    Feb 2012

    Lightbulb Visa Officers Suggestions and answers for Why visa's are being Rejected.

    Worth Reading It

    Student: I didn't get my F1-What's Next?
    officer: Good Evening everyone! Welcome to this web-chat with our consular officer on F-1 visas and understanding refusals. We will now begin the chat. But before that some ground rules!
    Please ask one question after another and as briefly as possible. We will try to answer as many questions as possible in an hour's time.
    Questions based on Rejection:

    Prospective Student: My F-1 visa was refused and the reason I was told is that for Public Administration there are not many job opportunities in India. If there werenít any job opportunities then why do students like me opt for that subject? There are plenty of jobs here in India on the subject.
    Officer: Thanks for your question. Student visas aren't usually refused for only one reason; usually there are several factors that lead the officer to believe that the student hasn't met the burden of proof that he or she is qualified for the student visa. What do you think were the weaknesses of your application?

    Prospective Student: I was refused my visa stating that my academics are low?
    Officer: Not all students will be able to convince a visa officer that they meet the requirements for the student visa based off of their academic history alone. If you have average or below average marks in your undergraduate program, it is very likely that you will need additional factors to prove to the visa officer that you will be successful in a United States graduate program.
    Prospective Student: Why are there so many rejections?
    Officer: Thousands of students get their student visa approved in Hyderabad every year, but youíre right, there are also many students who are not approved. The most common reason is because of section 214B. According to that law, the burden of proof is on the student to show that they meet the qualifications for the student visa. Please know that I donít know the specifics of why you were refused, of course, I can only speak in general terms. But I hope that information is helpful.

    Prospective Student: I just wanted to know the reason to my F-1 Visa application to be rejected?
    Officer: I don't know why you were refused. What do you think was the weakest part of your application profile?
    Prospective Student: Though my Academic grades were good and even my GRE and TOEFL score were good I was rejected twice.
    Officer: Academics and GRE/test scores are two of the very important factors that officers use, but they're not the entire interview. Other factors are considered too. And how "good" is "good?" There are no hard and fast rules, no magic numbers, but sometimes students and officers have different definitions of "good."

  2. #2
    MS in US Senior
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Prospective Student: I was rejected my F-1 Visa under 214 (b) as a potential immigrant... I was asked about my selected University in which my older brother had studied and is in USA working under OPT, once I said this to the VISA officer, she started asking me about my brother and handed me with Rejection under 214 (b).. I would like to know that can I reapply as I don’t have any intention of staying there forever.
    Officer: It may seem silly to compare you with your older brother (or sister) but I’ve often asked about older siblings who have studied in the past. It’s not a set-in-stone factor, but it helps me consider your application. I’d encourage anyone who has an older sibling in the US to bring a photocopy of their passport and a photocopy of their transcripts and, if your sibling is working now and will help to sponsor your education, make sure to bring a copy of their salary slips and bank documents. But part of the analysis under the law IS job opportunities and having a career plan. In addition, the student must convince the officer that he or she has a present intent to return to their home country after schooling.

    Prospective Student: Why rejection rate is high compared to last year?
    Officer: I don't know the current approval rate, and I don't know how it compares to last year. Sorry. We don't keep that information, because we adjudicate each application as an individual. It's our goal, though, to consistently adjudicate student visas - both year after year and at every post around India.

    Prospective Student: Is it necessary to change the University after we were rejected for the first time?
    Officer: It's not necessary to change the university. (If you do change the University, be prepared to explain why to the officer.) But it brings up an important topic, explaining your academic plan.
    Give careful consideration of your academic plan. In order to be eligible for a student visa, you must present a credible academic plan, and a significant part of that requirement is explaining your University selection. Consular officers do not adjudicate student visas on University choice alone, but we are well aware of Universities which have been closed down for unlawful activities. In both India and the U.S., government-regulated banks can go bankrupt, government-inspected airlines can have accidents, and government-authorized schools can be shut down. Have you spent as much time comparison shopping for Universities as you would if you were buying a new motorcycle?
    I am a visa officer who has interviewed hundreds of Indian student visa applicants. Many are very good. But I am worried when I talk to applicants who seem to have paid very little attention in choosing a school, that it is almost a casual choice. Select universities that have solid reputations and be prepared to present good reasons why your final selection is the best match for you. How does this university makes sense for you, in terms of your academic background and future plans?
    Questions on Deferment of Enrollment

  3. #3
    MS in US Senior
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Prospective Student: I got rejected twice for Fall 2011 and I am deferring my admissions for Spring 2012. May I know the chances of getting visa for the third time and I heard that if the student gets rejected by the Consulate and for the next time the same person cannot interview him. Is that True?
    Officer: It's true, in order to be most fair to each applicant, that we try to give you an interview with a new officer, and most often that happens. Most students, who reapply, especially very quickly after their first interview, find that the result is the same. We don't encourage students to reapply until they've taken some positive steps to improve their candidacy.
    And know that officers can see what information has changed since your previous interviews, which brings up two important points: 1. Make sure you never provide false information to a visa officer, as it could come back to haunt you! Misrepresentation that is material to a decision can result in a life-time ban on travel to the United States. 2. Always be able to tell the officer something that has changed since your previous application. Why are you a better candidate now? What have you done since the previous interview? Have you gotten some good work experience? Have you been working on projects? Retaken the GRE? Prepared a better financial plan? Because if you've only been playing cricket for the past month, you're unlikely to get a different result --- all officers are trained to make similar decisions!

    Prospective Student: I got rejected twice for Fall 2011 and I am deferring my admissions for Spring 2012 may I know the chances of getting visa for the third time
    Officer: Deferring admission is a good choice for many people. Concentrate on improving your profile in the next 6 months. What are things you think you can improve between now and then? And when you've been refused once or more in the past, you've got your work cut out for you in the future. You can always apply again, but we recommend that you do so only when you can answer the officer's first question "what has changed since your previous application?" Don't just trust luck. Don’t just hope for a different decision. Improve your candidacy. Have something tangible that you can proudly say makes you a better applicant than last time.

    Prospective Student: I have received admission from SIUC for PhD for fall 2011, for registration they need final master’s certificate and since I couldn't get that in time, I deferred my admission to the next semester. But my masters University said that it will take some more time. I wanted to know if I can apply for visa with my official graduation letter from University until the final certificate is ready. (Because if I wait till the final certificate is ready and then apply for visa, it may become late)
    Officer: That's a good question. I'm not sure I know the answer. What I do know is that you definitely need an I-20 from the University. As soon as the University issues you the I-20, you should be able to apply for the visa interview. Oftentimes we see only provisional documents rather than the final copy, and most of the time that is fine.

    Prospective Student: I got my visa stamped on Dec 2010 as my mom met with an accident I couldn’t turn up for the Spring intake (Jan 2011). So I have applied for deferral joining, for the same University and received my new I-20 with same SEVIS number and for the same course and for the same University. Kindly help me out whether I can go with the same visa or not. My college reporting is on 24th august. So kindly help me out with this issue....Thank You
    Officer: We encourage you to get a new visa, you might well have a problem at the Port of Entry with an old visa, even if it is still valid. Know, though, that a new interview .

    Questions on GRE & TOEFL

    Prospective Student: Sir I would like to put forth a general query which lots of students have and i.e., is GRE a requirement for F-1 visa issuance or admission requirement for Universities in USA.
    Officer: Great question. GRE is not required for student visa. But it is an important tool for both master’s program admission and helping the officer know if you're likely to be a credible US grad student. Especially if you've been refused in the past, it’s a good way to demonstrate that you're taking improvement seriously and gives the visa officer a new piece of information that might make you successful. The GRE also greatly expands the number of universities you can consider and apply for. All of my friends who went to grad school or professional school -- and even those who were simply thinking about it -- took the GREs. Can’t hurt, right?

    Prospective Student: What is the criterion that really matters for obtaining an F-1? GRE and TOEFL scores? Or the intent to return back to India? Or the academics? Exactly what?
    Officer: It's the whole picture. Except I’d add in "your academic plan." and I’d slightly minimize "intent to return back to India," as US law acknowledges that students are young, impressionable, and likely to change and grow.
    Prospective Student: Sir, I have applied for F-1 visa twice in last two months. The reason for the first rejection was low GRE and the reason for the second rejection was "low tier University”. I agree that the only weak point in my profile was low GRE but I have seen myself that students with same level of my academic background whether it is backlogs or percentage a visa for same level of University WITHOUT EVEN ATTEMPTING a GRE!!! I sincerely ask you Sir, doesn’t it hurt when we see such cases?

    Officer: Luckily, both of the reasons that you suggest as the reasons you were refused are within your control. You can still work hard, study and improve your test scores. And you can always apply to even stronger academic programs. We don't adjudicate based on the school, but I think you'll find that higher test scores will help gain you admission to programs that will better help you achieve your goals...which can only help you convince the officer that you have a great academic plan in mind.

    Prospective Student: My profile is a % of 65 in graduation with no average score in GRE......applied to South East Missouri State rejected twice saying I was a potential immigrant and had a low GRE score.......will a higher score help me the next time?
    Officer: Like I told someone one before, improving your GRE score is a good way to improve your application. It requires work, study and determination. Do you think that was the weakest part of your application? Studying and improving your GRE score is one good step that all previously-refused students can try to improve their credentials for a second interview. High exam scores on aptitude-based entrance exams are one piece of evidence that lead visa officers to believe you will be a credible, legitimate student in a United States University.

    Prospective Student: I have been refused F-1 visa for twice in Fall 2011 intake. The reason for my rejection is I am not having enough work experience and have a GRE score of 930. But people with these qualifications have been issued visa.
    Officer: It's true, there are no magic numbers, and you can get a student visa with a 930 GRE. But that's a score that would often lead me to ask the student if that's the best score they could get. If it is the highest score you can get, you might lag behind American classmates in a graduate-level program. And if it’s not the highest score you can get, I would wonder about your dedication to studies. Graduate school is a big commitment; you should be willing to put in the work to improve your GRE score.

    Prospective Student: Actually my GRE is 880 and my TOEFL is 103, may I know for what reason my visa was refused?
    Officer: Check out some websites and see how your GRE score compares with US graduate students. It is just one factor officers use, but might be one of the reasons your visa was refused. Consider studying harder and improving your score.
    Questions on Visa issuance being pure luck

    Prospective Student: Hello sir, good evening, I was rejected for an F-1, without asking for a single document to be shown. My documents are all genuine and my father is a manger with 20 lacs annual income, but there are many students who got visa by showing fake documents, does visa purely depend on luck?
    Officer: Oftentimes officers don't ask to see a single document, both for students who are refused and those who are approved. We’re trained to make quick decisions based on a totality of circumstances. But that said, sometimes documents become very important, so make sure to plan each document that could become important and bring it to the interview. Documents are especially important if we find out they’re fraudulent, as this will result in a refused visa and the possibility of a lifetime ban.

    Prospective Student: Hello Sir. Many students who did not write TOEFL on their own got visas in the past (purely luck for them), and now they are pursuing masters, but a bona fide student like me who has all genuine documents and strong financial ties in home country have been refused thrice, I am deeply hurt by the way Visa Officers refused me without a reason.
    Officer: The officer will always give you a reason, which is oftentimes a piece of paper that articulates 214(b) requirements, too. And I agree with you, it disappoints me when students use fraud to get a visa, cheating US immigration law. And it disappoints me, too, when some students abuse the student visa for other purposes. Luckily, most Indian students who study in the US go on to amazing educations and careers.

    Prospective Student: Everybody says visa is based on luck and confidence in you is it true?

  4. #4
    MS in US Senior
    Join Date
    Feb 2012
    Officer: Ha ha, I’ll try to convince you that is not entirely the case. Luck? If you have an outstanding academic profile and plan, you're going to find a lot of success in the US as a graduate student. If you didn't work hard in your undergrad and have a poor academic plan, you're unlikely to get a student visa. In the US we have a saying "YOU MAKE YOUR OWN LUCK." But I will admit that confidence is important. :-) Prepare for your interview and present comfortably.

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