US Embassy Chargé d’Affaires Patricia Lacina presented visas to two students from Mumbai who plan to study abroad in the US this year. According to Lacina, despite the pandemic, the US mission issued more student visas in 2021 than ever before.
Over 4,000 students attended student visa interviews across India at the US Embassy in New Delhi and Consulate General offices in Mumbai, Chennai, Hyderabad and Kolkata. The Consul General, David J. Ranz, congratulated many students who came to Mumbai for interviews.
“An American degree can take you anywhere in the world,” Ranz said. “Students are big business for the United States, with Indian students contributing more than $8 billion a year…Last year we issued a record 100,000 visa applications to Indian students and could double that that number in 2022 according to the numbers with us,” he added.
“The United States places immense value on international students…this is especially true in India; in fact, Indians are the second largest group of international students in the United States,” Lacina said.
Lacina added that she believes the international exchange of students from India to the United States is a “cornerstone” of the US-India relationship.
“Last year we issued a record 100,000 visa applications to Indian students and could double that number in 2022 according to the numbers with us.”
This surge in student visa applications comes after a short dip due to the pandemic, and according to Don Heflin, Minister Counselor for Consular Affairs in India, this increase can be attributed to a number of factors including the state of the economy. India and the “pent up demand” of 2020-2021.
He also shared that they plan to interview more student visa applicants this summer than ever before.
“Last year we had about the right number of applicants compared to the pre-covid years. But we are seeing renewed interest this year,” Heflin said.