There’s a growing concern – what does Coronavirus or COVID 19 pandemic mean for international students who are hoping to study in USA? Following information is VERY IMP if you are considering MS in USA, MBA or Bachelor’s in USA.

Fall 2021 updates

07 Jun, 2021 – Vaccine updates for students heading to USA

Mint reported that many universities, especially those in the US, require students to be vaccinated. To make matters worse, Covaxin is yet to be recognised by WHO. So, if you are heading to USA or another country this Fall, you need to get both doses of Covishield before your travel date.

Let’s see why it is complicated – First, there are travel restrictions to deal with. There are no flights available for students to fly out of India at the moment. Then, there is a speculation of whether and when the visa consulates will open so that incoming students can get their F1 visas stamped. On top of that, India has advised couple of months gap in between the two doses of Covishield. Sadly, covaxin is not even recognised by WHO and hence, may not be a viable option for anyone contemplating travel abroad. With increased gap, there may not be enough time for all students to get both the vaccination shots before the Fall semester begins.

Our clients reported that Mumbai consulate has started taking appointments but others are yet to open. In a light-at-the-end-of-tunnel scenario, it was reported yesterday that the union health ministry has decided to reduce the gap of second dose of Covishield for people who have to travel abroad for educational purposes, employment opportunities or as part of the national contingent for Tokyo Olympics. This will be a big relief!

We speculate that the govt will allow special provisions for students that will allow them to get vaccinated and be ready for travel this Fall. For now, you may want to make sure that:

  1. Get your first dose of covishield asap, if not already
  2. Keep your visa docs ready (you should have already asked for your I20) so that you can book an appointment whenever the consulate allow you to
  3. Keep a tab on the updates from your target school in case they change any policy for Indian students

We will keep updating this page and our Instagram as the situation unfolds. Join us there for Nistha’s lives and interactive sessions.

05 Apr, 2021 – USA to open physical classrooms for Fall 2021

Over 51 million people have been fully vaccinated in USA. As we sort of predicted last year, US is on track to cover its entire population in coming months which means that Fall 2021 school sessions will open in-person. The universities which have suffered a lot last year have started informing the admitted folks that Fall classes will most likely be conducted in-person.

But, the catch now is with getting the visa on time since second wave is hitting India hard. Consulates are currently open but if the number of cases rise, they may shut down and visa processing may get delayed.

If you are a Fall 2021 admitted candidate and have finalized your school, get your visa sooner rather than later to avoid last minute panic.

Nistha held a Study Abroad Meetup on 23 Aug 2020

We held a discussion on WHY YOU MUST APPLY for MS in USA for 2021 ASAP. In a highly interactive session, Nistha discussed how things are shaping up for 2021. We predicted the Fall 2021 sessions to open up in person and encouraged our candidates to apply early.

What happened in 2020?

International students who were supposed to join Grad Schools in 2020 ended up deferring their admissions to Spring 2021 or Fall 2021 (if allowed).

Meanwhile, Trump threw few curveballs gathering the wrath of international students alike. He first suspended new H1B visa issuance, then he asked all international students to leave USA, then he was sued by Harvard and MIT which made him take back his attack on F1 students. However, it turned out that any new student starting his classes in 2020 wasn’t allowed to enter USA physically in Fall 2020. Last week, Trump also loosened the strict suspension of new H1B visas.

Read our previous analysis post on To Defer or Not to Defer!

Global recession and job losses in the aftermath of Covid-19

One of the worst outcomes of the covid-19 pandemic is the impact on industries and economy. Given the lockdowns and complete fullstop on travel, retail and physical meetups – so many industries are shutting down. Even when the lockdown ends, it is going to take sometime for the markets to bounce back and employment figures to catch up.

What does this mean for Master’s students? Read 5 ways coronavirus will impact the job search for MS and MBA students.

That’s it – we will keep updating this page as and when we hear anything important. Stay safe and reach out to us if you have any other queries about your upcoming Grad School dreams.

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