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Study in USA

Do you know:

  • Every 33 seconds, a new immigrant moves to the United States.
  • Though there are 300 spoken languages in the USA, there is no official language of the country.
  • This country is the world’s most sought-after education destination, with 1.1 million aspirants seeking higher education in the USA. That’s almost 24% of the 4.6 million international students concentrating in nations other than their home country.

Who doesn’t want to live on the land where government protects everyone’s opportunity to pursue their idea of happiness? Be it the case of a Madurai-born IIT Kharagpur graduate becoming the CEO of Google and Alphabet, a Hyderabad-born studious and hardworking boy becoming the CEO of Microsoft, or the son of a Kenyan immigrant becoming the 44th US President – the United States of America offers a fair opportunity to everyone, from Kylie Jenner (world’s youngest billionaire) to George Joseph (oldest billionaire in America), to pursue their idea of happiness and develop their talents to the fullest. 

Known for offering quality education, cultural diversity, and ground-breaking research and innovation capabilities, the country is a coveted destination among international candidates. In 2002, US institutions received nearly 4.9 million applications. And in 2017, they received almost 10.2 million applications. That’s more than doubled, and without any doubt, it will keep increasing. 

While the real factor that drives students’ enthusiasm to opt the USA for higher studies is almost impossible to find, several reasons contribute to the United States’ favor and make it a favorite destination among global candidates. From Harvard, MIT, Stanford, and Caltech (world’s top 4 universities according to QS World Ranking) to an unending range and depth of courses, diverse culture, and excellent job opportunities to choose from – the USA as a nation is a kit that offers it all.

For many, it is a dream to explore a country, which is kilometers away from home, and for many, it is a lifetime commitment. In this sense, among candidates worldwide for years, the USA has been a preferred destination for higher education. The USA is home to 48 universities from the top 100 global universities in the world. Moreover, the wide variety of courses that this country makes available through its 4000+ institutions makes the USA the world’s most popular choice for studying abroad.

Undoubtedly, if we sit to discuss what makes the USA such a hit among international students, many can go on hours. Well, we found some of the prominent points due to which it consistently attracts international students.

High-ranked Universities:     

See a list of highest rated institutions for higher education worldwide. You will find the USA hosts the lion’s share in it. According to the Times Higher Education rankings, out of the world’s top 20 universities, 15 universities are from America. 

Wide range of courses:

Through its 2- and 4-year institutions, the country has distributed its two million+ programs into bachelors, masters, Ph.D., technical, associate, and certificate courses. 

Outstanding cultural diversity:

The USA accepts around 1.1 million international students every year. With the enrollment of 369,548 students in undergraduate, graduate, non-degree, and OPT programs, China remained the largest international student source from 10+ years. While with 202,014, 52,250, 37,080, 26,122 students; India, South Korea, Saudi Arabia, and Canada round out the top four, after China, respectively.

Halogen focus on experiential learning:

Though the USA houses 4000+ institutions, all have one thing in common: a curriculum that focuses on the diversity of courses and enables learning through project-based pedagogy. And because of that, US education is also recognized worldwide. Count anything related to experiential learning – from co-ops, internships, real-world experiences to solid windows for developing healthy relationships with a future employer – the country offers it all on a platter.

STEM OPT:

Hurray. A change in the policy now gives international STEM students a confirmed opportunity to stay back in the United States on OPT for additional 36 months after completing their studies. Thus, while students work for a US-based organization, they can gain proper practical training beyond the standard allowance. 

Research and innovation:

Many private and public organizations, including universities, are solving some or the other problem. No matter your research and innovation field, you can always find a home for it in the USA. In 2017, the National Science Foundation surveyed R&D expenditure by covering 903 universities. It suggested that those universities had spent 75.3 billion USD on research and innovation. The bottom line is when it comes to knowledge investments, the US differentiates as the leader.

Choice-based education system:

The education system in the USA is one of the most flexible education systems in the world. Undergraduate students can choose a major of their choice and explore different domains in the first two years. From the possibility of choosing which, when, and how many classes to attend each semester to provide a range of conventional and non-conventional majors and minors, it builds a highly reinforcing framework that allows individuals to grow and adjust according to their strengths and weaknesses.

Career prospects:

Three-fourth of the international students secure their employments, from an immediate basis to three-to-six months wait in some cases, after their degree completion. Moreover, top employers from around the world looking to recruit adaptable, smart, skilled, experienced and candidates familiar with different languages and cultures – give a significant weightage to graduates from American universities. Because the country trains its students for the real world by offering them international opportunities at all stages of their academic journey.

Financial assistance:

There is a range of financial assistance for international students like scholarships, teaching assistantships, full or partial tuition-free waivers, research assistantships, paid internships, and part-time work opportunities at most US institutions. Students can work for 20 hours a week while studying.  

Even after this, if you cannot choose your study destination or if you want to confirm whether your country of choice is best suitable for you or not, do not hesitate to contact us.

Imagine any damn field. You will find a program for that in the USA. Can you believe this? There are bachelor’s and master’s degree programs in digital mapping, foresight, eco gastronomy, nautical archaeology, peace and conflict studies, biomimicry, ethical hacking, communication for development, psychometrics, digital currency, puppetry, to whatnot. You think of your area of interest, America has a course on that. Nevertheless, though the USA offers a wide range of courses in pretty much every conceivable and imaginable field, some top picks, in other words ‘most popular courses,’ among the global applicants which head the rundown of almost every aspirant. That list of top picks usually incorporates STEM courses. However, other programs are similarly unmatched and are exceptionally preferred by many. 

Whether it is a public university, private university, or a community college and be it bachelor’s, master’s, or Ph.D. degree programs to an associate degree and certificate programs – you will find some popular courses of all sorts.

Top Undergraduate Majors in the USA

Top Graduate majors in the USA

Top Associate Degrees in the USA

Computer Science

Computer Science 

Associate of Science in Computer science

Communications

Wireless communications

Associate of Science in Aeronautics

Business

Embedded Systems

Associate of Science in Radiation Therapy

Economics

Management Information Systems

Political Science

Power Engineering

 

iOverseas offers a range of programs based on your eligibility and university requirements. To know the best program for you based on your profile, contact us.

Be it undergraduate, graduate, or even a Ph.D. program. Students begin the lengthy application process when the admissions open in the USA. If you are looking to start the process, here’s the handy information about the intakes and application procedure. 

Intakes:

US universities and colleges have three intakes: Spring (January/February), Summer (April/May), and Fall (August/September). Though Fall is a major intake, most universities and colleges are open for Spring too. Summer intake is usually available for selected courses only. 

To start the application process for US Universities, you will need the following:

  • A valid passport with a validity date of 6 months after your intended course completion date
  • Academic transcripts
  • Standardized test scores (GRE/GMAT/SAT/ACT/TOEFL/IELTS/PTE)
  • Confirmation of funds

Each document checklist mentioned above looks easy but comes with challenges when the application process starts. For example, the American universities and colleges use proof of funds for determining both a candidate’s ability to afford the education and sometimes to check the eligibility for a scholarship. Hence, a clear understanding of what to present and how to present confirmation of funds is crucial. 

Apart from this, once the application process is on, you will find a queue of required application documents. It starts from filling simple application form (sometimes it is complex), to upload your statement of purpose, personal statements, essays, recommendation letters, transcripts and certificates, and test score reports. But the process just doesn’t end when you pay the application fees. 

Then, the visa process begins. The visa process covers the following:

  • Passport
  • I-20 form
  • Confirmation page of DS-160
  • Receipt of SEVIS I-901 fee payment
  • Visa application fees
  • Appointment
  • Visa interview

Collect your passport if a visa is granted. But we don’t leave you there. iOverseas also helps in pre-departure arrangements like accommodation, air ticketing, insurance, airport pickup, and forex arrangements. The saying, “It’s not about the destination. It’s about the journey,” aptly represents the  attitude of iOverseas. 

With globally renowned universities, a culture of opportunity, and fantastic advantages for post-study employment – keep the USA at the top in most people’s lists when it comes to choosing a country for higher education. However, when opting for the USA as a study destination, the other major factor is cost. The money spent on education and living plays a crucial role in determining the feasible destination for higher studies. 

Cost of Education

The universities and colleges in the USA are broadly categorized into public institutions and private institutions.

Public institutions:

These institutions are state-owned entities and are financially funded by government taxes. They are generally massive in size. Public institutes offer all levels of degree programs to students in a variety of fields. In comparison with private institutions, the cost of education is typically less. Some examples of private institutes are Ohio State University, University of Texas, The Pennsylvania State University, University of California, etc.

USA (Public Institutions)

Study Program

Approximate tuition fees in USD

Approximate tuition fees in INR

Bachelor’s degree programs

20,000 to 35,000 / Year

15,00,000 to 26,25,000 / Year

Master’s degree programs

20,000 to 40,000 / Year

15,00,000 to 30,00,000 / Year

Conversion Rate 1 USD = 75 INR/- as of December 2020

Private institutions:

Name the best US universities. Anyone would start with Harvard, Stanford, MIT, Yale, Princeton, Columbia, Johns Hopkins, to Carnegie Mellon. These all high-ranked US universities are classified as private institutes. Though these institutes are primarily funded through students’ tuition fees and donations from private donors, many are still not for profit. Private institutes are generally more expensive than public institutes.

USA (Private Institutions)

Study Program

Approximate tuition fees in USD

Approximate tuition fees in INR

Bachelor’s degree programs

30,000 to 60,000 / Year

22,50,000 to 45,00,000 / Year

Master’s degree programs

30,000 to 70,000 / Year

22,50,000 to 52,50,000 / Year

Conversion Rate 1 USD = 75 INR/-

Moreover, most doctoral degree programs are usually 100% funded through research/teaching assistantships, research aid, or bursaries.

Living Expenses

On the one hand, the USA offers the best education in the world. While on the other, life in the USA is pretty pricey, especially from an international student’s living cost point of view. 

But here, we are not going to give you just an overview about what living expense in the USA consists of. Instead, with our ‘student-first’ approach, iOverseas is also going to showcase to you the ways through which you can cut your living expenses significantly. 

Rent: 

Rent is the number one thing on which international students need to spend a lot. The USA’s rents are insanely high, which will be the biggest part of living in the USA. Well, there is no way to get over it. However, a shared apartment offers meaningful savings. Undoubtedly, rent depends a lot on the city – the rents on the East Coast and near a big city like New York, Boston, or Philadelphia goes from $400 to $700 per month for a shared room. Nevertheless, states like Texas or Arizona offer comparatively affordable living costs than the other states in the USA. Further, the West Coast cities, especially in California like around LA or Bay Area, are expensive. 

Even though, we usually recommend students choose the university in a big city because that gives a lot of opportunities in terms of internships and co-ops. But keeping that aside, when it comes to renting, the bottom line is ‘sharing is saving’. Because most students use apartments just for going there, sleeping, morning chores, and probably cooking.

Insurance:

What do you think are the chances of not getting a severe fever or headache in the two or four years of degree programs? Can you take the guarantee that you will never slip on ice? Find us a person who never met an accident. It’s rare. Isn’t it? Every scene mentioned here is very much possible on any day while your stay in the USA and it’s really costly. For example, while walking home from university on the East Coast, an individual slips badly and feels like one of the fingers has broken. Well, according to HealthCare.gov (a federal government site), the cost of fixing a bone can cost around $7500. That is equal to Rs. 5,62,500 with the conversion rate of 1 USD = 75 INR/-.

And that is why though insurance can consume a notable portion of the living expenses, one must consider the choice of buying it. We recommend the students to see insurance as a part of the whole fee and not just as a monthly cost. 

Commute:

It means you may need to take a bus or train ride back and forth. The point is how to lessen the commuting expenses. The answer to that is straightforward, walk or take a bike. That’s why we recommend students to find accommodation from where the university is just a mile away. Because a mile distance can be walked easily twice, thrice, or even four times in a day. It’s usually like 15 or 20 minutes of a walk. 

Suppose we calculate this with one ride, which typically costs around $2.5 almost across the USA. That’s like saving $5 per day for back and forth once. And what if it goes to twice, thrice, then the saving would be around $10, $15. Hence, prefer accommodation in the vicinity of a mile from the university.

Overall, an international student spends around $9,000 to 12,000 (Rs. 6,75,000 to 9,00,000) a year on living expenses. However, this number depends entirely on the place where a student lives.

Apart from the mentioned above three areas and showing a bit of how to save bucks from your living expenses, we have some other areas and possible windows to save some more money. Do not hesitate to contact us to get guidance on how to budget living costs.

In terms of providing financial support to academically bright and worthy applicants, US universities are very free-handed. International students who have been awarded fee waivers for studying in the USA are usually categorized through merit or need as discussed below:

Merit-based scholarships: 

It offers to students with impressive GPA and excellent performance in standardized test scores. 

Need-based scholarships:

It presents to the students who have been shining throughout their academics or non-academic, but the family income is inadequate to support their further education costs. 

Although the number of international students obtaining need-based scholarships may be small, many merit-based scholarships are available in the USA for the proven scholars. And iOverseas helps you in the best possible way to get you a suitable scholarship.