In USA, the M-1 student visa is less popular than its rockstar sister, the F-1 student visa. While the F-1 visa is used for degree seeking candidates and students of English, the M-1 visa is used for vocational training, which encompasses programs like cooking school, cosmetology, flight school, gemology, mechanical classes, technical courses, and trade preparation (e.g. carpentry, electrical, locksmithing, plumbing). While the F-1 visa generously allows students to stay in the U.S. after graduation and work for 12 months in the U.S. (36 months for STEM students), M-1 students are eligible for just one month of post-completion practical training for every four months of full-time study, up to a maximum of six months of training. Vocational programs have been soaring in popularity as U.S. institutions of higher learning grapple with mounting national skepticism over the value of university degrees, especially when opportunity costs from prolonged university education are considered.
Photo by Vance Osterhout on Unsplash