An official website of the United States government

Studying in the United States

This page provides key information for students interested in attending a college or university in the United States.

For more information, please visit:  Education USA This website has comprehensive, step-by-step guidance on selecting a university, developing a financial plan, applying for admission, applying for a visa, and preparing to depart.

Education USA also has a local office to assist students to study in the U.S.:

EducationUSA Center
3rd floor of Bayalinov Youth and Children’s Library
Ogonbaev str. 242
720040 Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan
+(996) 550-95-01-12

Choosing a University

The United States has over 4,700 universities and colleges, so it can be difficult to choose the school that is right for you.  While recommendations from friends that have studied in the U.S. are helpful, consider other sources of information.  Educationusa.State.Gov has many resources for learning about universities to help you find the find one that meets your educational, financial, and career objectives.

Paying for Your Studies

Universities and colleges in the U.S. are not free, although many offer scholarships that may cover some of the costs.  Nonetheless, you must be able to pay for tuition, fees, and living expenses while studying.  You cannot rely on employment in the U.S. to pay for your education, as these opportunities are very limited (see section below).  During the interview, you will need to provide evidence to the consular officer that you have sufficient funds to pay for tuition, fees, and living expenses at your college or university.

Working as a Student

F-1 students have limited opportunities to work in the U.S.  As a result, all F-1 students must demonstrate that they have the financial means to pay for tuition, fees, and living expenses while studying in the U.S.  F-1 students cannot rely on employment to offset the cost of their studies.  More information is available here.

F-1 visas are not a path to work in the U.S.  Students found working without authorization will have their SEVIS record terminated and be required to leave the U.S. immediately.

Working at Your University:

After your first year as a student, you may petition DHS for permission to work in an “on-campus” position affiliated with your university, such as working in a university library or cafeteria.  As a student, you may work no more than 20 hours per week.  If you are permitted to work, earnings from work as a student are not enough to cover the cost of your education.

Working outside of Your University:

DHS may permit students to work off-campus at other positions only in limited circumstances.  An F-1 student must have completed one academic year, and have a severe economic hardship that is unexpected and threatens your ability to continue your studies.  This permission is granted only in rare cases.  Again, if you are permitted to work, earnings from work as a student are not enough to cover the cost of your education.

For detailed instructions on applying for a visa, please see Applying for a Visa in Bishkek.