international students, with 18 states growing at a faster rate than the national increase of 8 percent. New York University became the leading host university for international students this year, after twelve years during which University of Southern California was the leader. For the first time ever, four institutions broke the 10,000 mark: New York University, University of Southern California, University of Illinois – Urbana-Champaign, and Columbia University, which each hosted more than 10,000 international students. The Open Doors® report is published annually by the Institute of International Education in partnership with the U.S. Department of State’s Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. Studying in the U.S. is a dream of many international students. More than 75 percent of international students indicated motivation to “expand career and life opportunities” and “quality higher education options” as the top two reasons that motivated them to study in the U.S., according to a recent survey of nearly 5,000 international students by World Education Services.
Application process While applying to institutions in America, you can apply through the common application website www.commonapp.org, the universal college application website universalcollegeapp.com/ or directly through the institution’s website as per the policies of the institution. Use the www.applytexas.org website for schools in the Texas system and the UC common application for the 10 schools in the California system. Their web site is: http:// www.universityofcalifornia.edu/
Supporting documents You would need to submit transcripts of the last three years, one or more essay, information on extra-curricular activities including sports, voluntary work and leadership initiatives undertaken; information on summer courses/ internships etc. Your teacher and/or counsellor will be invited 66
to send confidential letters of recommendation online along with the profile of the school. Students will also be asked to send TOEFL and SAT/ACT scores directly from the Education Testing Service and College Board. An IELTS or PET score can be submitted instead of the TOEFL to demonstrate English proficiency. Some institutions would need SAT II subject tests as well. Certain schools may not require SAT scores from international students. Also, ACT scores may be submitted in lieu of the SAT. www. actstudent.org has information on the ACT. With the SAT changing its structure, moe students are opting for the ACT. Please note that supplementary forms may be required from you so ensure that you read instructions carefully. Students who wish to pursue Art, Design or Architecture will also be required to submit a portfolio. Extracurricular pursuits and internships undertaken need to be reported and are looked upon favourably. If you wish to apply for an early decision or early action, the deadline is usually in November. You can visit individual websites for the specific dates. Students wishing to apply for admission to University of California for the fall term must submit an application by November 30th of the year prior to enrolment. Most other institutions have a January 1 deadline for the autumn intake under regular decision. For the January intake, applications must be sent in by October.
Scholarships Merit based scholarships are granted on academic merit. There are also grants awarded to students who have demonstrated financial need. Some universities need additional forms and essays for scholarship consideration while at others, every applicant is automatically considered for scholarship at entry.
The process of applying for an F-1 student visa begins with acceptance to an American college or university. Following admission, the educational institution in the United States will issue a Certificate of Eligibility for Non-Immigrant Student Status (I-20 form) and provide that to
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