Trump's impact on F1 Visas

What is the impact of Donald Trump on F1 Visa? Do you think that this is a good time to study in the US?

Before plunging on to this so-called Trump impact, let me answer your question. If your priority is just to study in the US and then return to India once you’re done with your education then; Yes, it is still a good time to go to the US, there are a few negatives, but then I feel that they don’t overshadow the positives. Now if you’re looking to make a career there, at this point, then it gets trickier. I would strongly advise that you read this article thoroughly and then decide if the risks are worth the rewards for you.

For those of you who need an introduction, an F1 visa is also known as non-immigrant visa; it gives eligibility to the international students to pursue their studies in the US.

Students all over the world are affected by this new Trump rule in the US. Apart from making it tougher to obtain any visa, Trump has also announced to ban all kinds of visas to Iraq, Iran, Syria, Somalia, Yemen, Sudan and Libya. This has created a lot of chaos amongst the international student’s community and the college fraternity as a whole.

According to Project Atlas and the Department of Commerce, in 2015/16 more than 10 lakh international students enrolled in various Universities in the US. This equated to a revenue of 2,350 crores (36 Billion Dollars). A good chunk of income for many Universities and colleges come from international students as their tuition is almost double the regular fee. Experts even say that if the US manages to lose this revenue, it could hamper the country’s economy as a whole.

Although it would be too early to predict anything, we can be sure that the US would not want to lose that sort of revenue. Tightening of the immigration and visa laws is sure to affect the inflow of international students but, their aim is not to completely stop anyone from entering their country, it is just to limit.

A point to be noted here is that Trump’s executive order just deals with the students entering the US. It does not direct the elimination of those already studying. However, the order also means that students who lawfully came from the seven affected countries (Iraq, Iran, Libya, Sudan, Syria, Somalia, and Yemen) might not be able to get back to the country once they depart, even those who hold a valid visa.

The primary motto of President Donald Trump behind such a strong stance is to take into consideration the safety and security of the U.S citizens. He also stated that he intends to create more opportunities for the U.S citizens in education, research, and job sectors, which he feels is being taken away by the non-immigrants. President Trump has a pro- U.S approach and is looking more into the upliftment of his countrymen, especially the youth.

It’s been observed that non-immigrants on completion of their studies in the U.S apply for an H1B visa to work in the country for several years, President Trump has already started to restrict the H1B visa to the non-immigrants. Currently,

85,000 H1B’s are given out every year from which 20,000 are reserved for those who completed higher education in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) and the remaining are popularly used by IT professionals from India. The positive point here though is that they are not planning on decreasing the quotas for STEM, but focus more so on lowering the intake of IT professionals coming directly.

Moreover, U.S.A has always been known as the land of opportunities and the strict laws would curb the concept of ‘Equal opportunity.’ U.S has been providing many opportunities to the non-immigrants to grow in all spheres, and it’s also a known fact that Non-Americans have given a significant boost to the US GDP and economy through hard work and talent.

Recently, a few international American students were interviewed and asked how they feel after the 90-day entry ban. And the majority of them said – although they have the necessary F1 visa, they are still worried regarding their future under Trump’s America.

Many executive members from various schools and universities were also interviewed and asked to comment on the ban.

Some of the relevant facts they mentioned in their interview:

  • Fatemeh Keshavarz, director of Roshan Institute for Persian Studies and School of Languages, Literatures, and Cultures, said: “If I were a student today, I wouldn’t have been allowed to enter the nation.” She further stated that “Iran is one of the nations on Trump’s list.” She also mentioned the fact that Iran sent more than 10,000 students to U.S. universities during 2015-16 – far more than any other nation on Trump’s list.

  • The president of National Association of Scholars, Peter Wood said that the impact of Trump’s executive order is ‘trivial.’

  • The National Iranian American Council’s director, Jamal Abdi said that the order stated eventually lead to the devastation of scholarship programs.

  • Joanna Regulska, the associate chancellor for Global Affairs at U.C. Davis law that she fears about the schools’ financial condition and the production of new knowledge. The official head believes that not every U.S. student has the ability or time to go abroad and bringing international students into contact with them gives them cultural as well as religious knowledge without their need of moving physically.

So now that you have some insight, let’s get back to the question

Do You Think it is the Right Time to study In U.S?

First of all, Trump’s presidency will definitely bring about a few political changes. Overall, the move will have both the pros and the cons. The following points will answer this question well:

The Pros:

  1. Students from India can still plan to pursue their education in their dream schools and colleges. Because the U.S. President himself once quoted that the country will always welcome smart and intelligent students.

  2. President Trump feels that the Indian students who are studying in America should not be asked to leave. He quoted this in one of his statements given to the Fox News. He also stated that the country needs smart people like Indians. This, in turn, implies that U.S companies want intelligent and qualified workforce. Not to mention that Indians occupy a sizeable portion of USA’s workforce!

However, both of these statements don’t mean that Indian students will not face any consequences because of the executive order.

The technical sector in the US is dominated by Asians and Indians, mainly because of the lack of American workforce in that space. So if you are going there to study technical courses, you should have an easier time in finding a job.

The Cons:

  • Native American students will be prioritized for jobs: U.S. companies will give preference to American students for employment. So, if you are looking forward to work in the US after completing your education there, be ready to hear about H1B visa changes. Moreover, if you dream to work in America in the longer run, you will have to face a lot of changes when it comes to employment, education and immigration policies. Enough to say that it will be tougher to get a job.

  • J1 visas will be replaced: Every year, around 3 lakh students visit the US under the J1 visa for the cultural exchange program in which they live, study and work there. It is in the news that Mr. President wants to replace this program with something which will indulge local youth. The consequence of this would be that neither Indian students will be able to apply for an internship in America nor will they be able to take a semester there.

  • Faith might affect your right to study, intern or work: With terrorism growing at a very fast pace, the U.S president has recently made several prejudices against Muslims. In December last year, he publically declared that he would introduce a ban on Muslims. This statement is enough to shatter your faith and prevent you from graduating at one of the world’s biggest universities or from interning at one of the world’s prestigious companies.

  • Unhealthy Environment: Giving priority to American students will somehow dissolve the feeling of equality. Somewhere, the atmosphere gets affected, and outsiders feel unsafe and insecure in such places.

The Bottom Line: Well, although nothing can be assertively said regarding the impact, we can only hope that the US maintains its friendship with India. Some political analysts and experts believe that Indian students who want to study in the US will not be affected by the presidential change. While there are others, who say that, visa restrictions and the possibility of termination of job programs for foreign youths as well as prioritizing of American employees, will lead to endangerment of a student’s future in the US. The impact of imposing restrictions of F1 visa would affect the US not only regarding economy but also regarding talent pool, diversity and in hiring the right thought process to bring out the best. Many companies (technology) have publicly criticized Trump on his new laws and openly admit that they would welcome immigrants or non-immigrants into their company.

Your aim should be to get through some of the better colleges and graduate with top marks. This will help you in securing a job faster. As of now, technology jobs (coding) are still easier to get compared to other fields due to the lack of stiff competition.


Staying in the USA after the legal status has expired is absolutely illegal. International students residing in USA who are on F-1 visas get a grace period of 60 days to stay in the country once their course is completed if they have not enrolled in any additional classes. Moreover, if a foreign student withdraws from classes through authorization from the school, he/she gets 15 days to leave the USA. If he/she withdraws from classes without authorization from the school, he/she must leave the USA immediately.

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