M Student Visa
Requirements for the M-1 Visa
- Applicant has a foreign residence and does not intend to abandon it;
- Application, acceptance and full-time enrollment (unless on an M-3 ) to a USCIS-approved educational institution in the U.S. in a vocational or other nonacademic program;
- SEVIS I-20 Form and payment of SEVIS fee;
- Proficiency in English or enrollment in courses leading to English proficiency;
- Proof of ability to support oneself during the entire course of study.
Students must attend school full-time as follows:
- Community/junior college-12 semester hours leading to a specific education and/or vocational objective;
- Post-secondary vocational/business school (not including language training programs) that confers a degree or its credits are accepted by at least 3 academic institutions-12 hours of instruction a week, or equivalent;
- Vocational or other nonacademic curriculum (including a language training program that furthers vocational training)-18 hours a week if mainly classroom study, 22 hours a week if mainly lab work ;
- Vocational or other nonacademic high school-minimum number of hours required;
- Online courses-no online courses are allowed unless physical presence is required.
M-2 Visas for Spouse and Minor Children of M-1 Student
The spouse and minor children of the M-1 student may join the student in the U.S. The spouse of the M-1 student may not attend school or be employed. Children on the M-2 are eligible to attend school from elementary through 12th grade. Additionally, those in M-2 status are not prohibited to changing to F or H status.
M-3 Student Visas for Canadian and Mexican Nationals
Commuter students from Canada and Mexico may attend school in the U.S. on either a full-time or part-time basis, as long as they do not reside in the U.S. and the school is within 75 miles of the U.S. border. M-3 students are subject to the same reporting and requirement processes as M-1 students. Border commuter students do not receive duration of stay and are not allowed to obtain M-2 status for dependants.
Entry and Stay on an M-1 Visa
Working While on an M-1 Visa
Changing From B-2 and Other Status
Important Considerations for the M-1 Visa