Are you in Dilemma to plan or not to plan studying in USA after Trump's presidency? Do you want to know whether it is worth investing money to study in USA in unstable immigration situation? If so, you must read this article.
How masters degree is helping Indian Students?
Currently, International students are enjoying 3 year work permit after completion of masters program, the best ever opportunity for STEM Masters, PhD, BS students. During the 3 year work permit, you will land into H1B visa status and you can stay on H1B visa for 6 years. If you can get green card sponsor during the 6 year H1B period, you can extend the H1B visa until you get greencard.
Before Trump's presidency, lot of companies are ready to hire OPT students and sponsor H1B Visas and Green card. With this approach, one can pay off student loan within one year of starting of working in USA and whatever happens to your visa status it doesn't matter.
What has Changed in 2017 after Trump entered White House?
Trump issued several executive orders to curb work permit(OPT) after masters degree and abusing of H1B visas.
Recent media revelations on these executive orders hinted at reducing OPT work permit from 3 years to 1 year and H1B extensions in multiples of 18 months instead of 3 years.
If these changes come true, employers will be discouraged to hire International students on OPT and sponsor H1Bs. If you don't get job after your masters degree you may be in trouble to pay the student loan and continue living in USA.
None of these changes were finalized yet. But, there is strong possibility that these rules would be implemented. To make things much worse, there is 100+ year wait time to get US Greencard in EB2 and EB3, the categories for which most of the Indians are eligible.
My Recommendation to students planning to study in USA
Here are my recommendations to different categories of students.
1) Students who come to USA with just backing of Student Loan and NOT financially strong enough to repay the loan if they don't get job in USA
--It would be clear by the end of 2017 on the upcoming changes to H1B & OPT programs. If your financial background is not strong in India, it's better to wait until end of this year to make a decision whether to study in USA or not.
2) Students who had enough money to pay the tuition fee and don't worry about repaying the loan stuff.
--You can plan to study in USA without considering current unstable situation.
3) Researchers, Students who will join University with good enough financial aid. They don't need to take money from pocket.
--This country will continue welcoming researchers as usual and Trump is in support of PhDs.