Coronavirus: new US work permits for trapped international students
The US will seek to further aid to international students who have been forced to remain in the country as a result of the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic with special work permits and visa extensions.
The US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) announcement came on 14 April and, according to Business Standard, this increased aid will take the form of authorising off-campus employment and visa extensions for these international students who are struggling economically due to the Coronavirus outbreak.
Hundreds of thousands of international students stranded in US without access to work
International students can now apply for off-campus jobs, and these applications will be considered on a case-by-case basis, in accordance with their individual financial situation.
This will undoubtedly be a great source of relief for those hundreds of thousands of students stranded in America without a source of income. These student numbers include a quarter of a million international students from India alone, who are currently studying in America.
Huge numbers of international students have been left feeling stranded in their host country of study after the closure of higher education institutions across America.
The Business Standard report also stated that all students at American university campuses had to leave their dormitories for the remainder of the academic session, until late August.
Non-immigrant visa extensions now being granted
In other Covid-19 response measures, there has also been an announcement that non-immigrant visa holders are now potentially in a position to receive special consideration, or expedited processing.
This would include visa extensions, to be undertaken on a strictly case-by-case basis.
For international students now forced to remain in the US for the foreseeable future due to Coronavirus without work, those requiring an extension of their visa may apply to the USCIS, who are able to grant this to individuals, depending on their circumstances.
Josephine Walbank is a reporter for Global Education Times (GET News) with a focus on education in the UK, Asia-Pacific, and Americas, and student experience and lifestyle news.
Josephine is an experienced journalist who previously served as the Editor-in-Chief of The Falmouth Anchor. She is also the former Deputy Editor of Voices, the Falmouth & Exeter Students’ Union’s publication, and has written for various food and lifestyle publications.
You can reach her at firstname.lastname@example.org