The United States of America (USA) is one of most attractive destinations for the international students. The USA has about more than 4500 accredited institutions of higher education which offers undergraduate and graduate, degrees in many disciplines like in Management, Engineering, Medical Courses, Paramedical Courses, Core Science Courses, Arts and Education etc.
The US education system has sound academic and diverse social multicultural environment which boosts academic, professional and personal development of individuals for the best preparation for their future. Investment in education and research has been the main reasons for attracting the deserving students across the world and growth into first largest economic country in the world. Students are allowed to work 20 hours per week and during holidays and college breaks, students can work full-time.
- 1st largest country in economy
- 300/500 top universities in the world
- More than 35,000 doctorate degree per year
- US has the largest financial centre (New York)
- 1st in international student enrollment all over the world
Country code: +1
Capital: Washington, D.C.
Area: 9,833,520 km2 (3rd)
GDP: $19.390 trillion (1st, 2017)
Per Capita: $59,501 (7th, 2017)
Density: 32.8/km2 (179th, 2017)
Population: 325,719,178 (3rd, 2017)
Government: Presidential Constitutional Republic
Major Cities: New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Los Angeles, Miami, Seattle, Dallas
Climate: State-wide averages of annual temperatures range from a high of 21.5°C to a low of -3.0 °C. For the entire United States, excluding Hawaii and Alaska, the year averages 11.5 °C.
The United States of America is a country in North America. There are 50 states in the United States of America. The country is situated mostly in central North America, where its forty-eight contiguous states and Washington, D.C., the capital district, lie between the Pacific and Atlantic Oceans, bordered by Canada to the north and Mexico to the south.
All US universities also offer numerous extra-curricular activities that provide real-world job experience.
Students can get more freedom in terms of choice of courses within college or university according to their prerequisites.
US universities place great significance on diversity; classes will consist of students of all ages, religions, and countries of origin.
The country has turned education hub to study most advanced studies with excellent research opportunities available in the world.
US education is recognized all over the world. 33 of the top 100 best world universities are located in the US, as ranked by QS World University Rankings for 2017/2018.
The USA education system is flexible in terms of choice of courses within a college or university. During the course of study, a student can transfer from one course/stream to another or one institution to another.
A wide spectrum of tuition fees, accommodation options & financial help from the institutions in the form of scholarships, fee waivers, aid etc makes USA education more affordable.
There is also always a very active social life on US campuses, with many clubs and organizations students can join that will help further career opportunities and allow interaction with students who have similar tastes and interests.
There are more than 4,500 other world-class institutions offering a top-notch education that can lead to career success. The US remains the source of most of the world’s ground-breaking developments in technology, business, arts, and beyond.
The US is at the forefront of scientific and creative innovation. Large research institutions in the US, in particular, offer opportunities for students to work side-by-side with their professors and apply what they are learning in the classroom in the lab or workshop.
The US is the most preferred education destination among International students. Currently more than 950,000 International students studying in diverse universities and institutions across US make it the number one choice for International students worldwide.
The American education system is unlike that in many other countries. Though the U.S. Federal government contributes almost 10% to the national education budget, education is primarily the responsibility of state and local government. US has the world’s most flexible education system; students can study their area of interest as specialization. As the education system of USA is not centralized each institute can determine its program and admission standards. Lateral movement in the education system is possible any time. The flow chart of the education system of USA as below:
- Doctor of Philosophy/ PhD (5-6 years)
- Elementary School(Primary School) (6 years)
- Bachelor Degree (university/college) (4 years)
- High School Diploma(Secondary School) (6 years)
- Associate Degree(Junior/Community College) (2 years)
- Masters Degree (university / college) Masters in Medicine, MD/ Masters in Dental Surgery /Juries’ Doctor(1-3 years)
Types of Degree
It is an academic degree awarded by the community colleges, junior colleges, business colleges. Some bachelor’s degree will be start after completion of this course. An associate degree is equivalent to the first two years of a four year college or university Bachelors degree which can be vocational or general in nature, but contain enough liberal arts subjects (such as English, science, social sciences, etc.) to allow students to transfer to the third year of a bachelor’s programme after obtaining their associate’s degree. The name of the degree is often followed by an indication of whether it is an arts or science programme: Associate in Arts (AA), Associate in Science (AS), Associate in Applied Arts (AAA) and Associate in Applied Science (AAS). It is the lowest in hierarchy of post secondary academic degrees offered in USA.
Bachelor’s degrees are 4 years course and offered by college or university. There is usually a progression from a broad base towards increased specialization. The name of the degree is followed by an indication of whether these are arts, science or business management course programme: Bachelor of Arts (BA), Bachelor of Science (BS) and Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA).
All courses taken after a bachelor’s degree are provided at a graduate school, usually (but not always) at a university. Individual departments determine admissions to graduate programmes. All candidates must have a bachelor’s degree, and there are also some additional requirements, depending on the selectivity of the institution and/or the specialization. These additional requirements can relate to the GPA, prerequisite subjects, entrance examinations, GRE, GMAT, IELTS, and TOEFL etc. The duration of master’s courses may range from one to four years depending on specialization. Many interdisciplinary masters’ programs are also available.
PhD programmes are also provided by graduate schools and universities. Students can take admission for a PhD only after completion of their master’s degree. PhD students need to submit a research proposal as well have to appear for GRE/GMAT & TOEFL/IELTS exams for admissions. The duration of PhD programmes depends on various factors; however, the average length for students with a master’s degree is 5/6 years. Admission is very selective.
Advanced Professional Degrees
Advanced professional degrees form a separate category. These programmes prepare students for professional careers, mostly in medical sciences and law. The entrance requirement is a bachelor’s degree with a partially prescribed curriculum, such as a pre-medicine or pre-law programme, supplemented with entrance examinations and the selection criteria mentioned above. Admission is very selective. The length of the most common courses varies from 3 years for the Juris Doctor (law) to 4 years for the Doctor of Medicine (MD), the Doctor of Dental Surgery (DDS) and the Doctor of Veterinary Medicine (DVM). In these cases, the term ‘Doctor’ refers to a professional title and is not a PhD.
Types of Institutions
A state school is supported and run by a state or local government. Each of the 50 U.S. states operates at least one state university and possibly several state colleges. State-affiliated institutions financially supported by public taxes, usually large in size. All levels of degrees with different fields of study are offered. Public or state universities generally are less costly than private institutions, but still offer outstanding learning opportunities.
Private universities are universities not operated by governments, although many receive favorable tax considerations and governmental student loans and grants. They receive private funding through alumni donations, faculty research grants, and tuition fees. American students enjoy studying in private institutions in the USA for their technological resources, research facilities, and small class sizes. The teaching experience is enriched by the staff’s varying experiences outside of the classroom. Innovative academic programs may be found on private university campuses. Some of the most competitive and selective institutions of higher education in the United States are private. Harvard University, Princeton University, Yale University, Columbia University, California Institute of Technology, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Stanford University, University of Chicago, University of Pennsylvania and Duke University.
Community colleges are two-year colleges that award an associate’s degrees (transferable), as well as certifications. There are many types of associate degrees, but the most important distinguishing factor is whether or not the degree is transferable. Usually, there will be two primary degree tracks: one for academic transfer and the other prepares students to enter the workforce straightaway. Community college graduates most commonly transfer to four-year colleges or universities to complete their degree. Because they can transfer the credits they earned while attending community college, they can complete their bachelor’s degree program in two or more additional years.
An institute of technology is a school that provides at least four years of study in science and technology. Some have graduate programs, while others offer short-term courses. Undergraduates admitted to these schools usually have incredibly strong backgrounds in math and sciences, as witnessed by grades and standardized test scores like SAT or GRE.
The Ivy League
These schools are the oldest and most famous in the country members of the Ivy League. They are in the Northeastern part of the USA. Ivy League colleges stress undergraduate liberal arts education, but they also have noted graduate and professional schools. Tuitions fee at these private schools is among the highest in the country, and admission is generally highly competitive.
Small Liberal Arts College
A liberal arts college is one with a primary emphasis on undergraduate study in the Liberal Arts and Sciences. Students in the liberal arts generally concentrate their studies in a particular field of study, while receiving exposure to a wide range of academic subjects, from the sciences to humanities subjects. Strictly liberal arts colleges are often quite old and mostly private schools. They are highly-rated institutions as they stress on small classes, individual attention to the students, and closer relationships between the faculties and students. Many of them also generally have rigid admission standards.
Tuition Fee: The annual tuition fees depend on the institutions. It is generally low for public Universities and more for private Universities. In general, the tuition fees ranges between US$6,000 – US$45,000.
Average tuition fee of UG program in a public university is around US$6,000 – 25,000 whereas private it may cost between US$12,000 to US$40,000.
Average tuition fee of PG program in a public university is around US$9000 – 25,000 while in private it may cost between US$10,000 to 45,000.
Living Expenses: Living expenses include house rent, food, books, insurance, mobile/internet and other Leisure activities. These expenses vary a lot from place to place. Costs for food and living are normally between $8,000 and $12,000 dollars per year.
Earning: $7 to $10 per hour
Part Time: 20 hours per week during studies; 40 hours per week during vacations.
Tax: If you are an international student studying in USA, you have to file a USA income tax return. You must determine your residency status to know about your tax in USA
Work Type: There are various part-time jobs available in all the sectors across hospitality/catering to call centre to banking and finance and etc. On campus jobs may include teaching assistantship or research assistantship where in a student can earn. With this, a student can also do internship in the related field which may or may not be with pay.
On completion of the course student is allowed to work for one yea, known as OPT (optional practical training). Optional Practical Training (OPT) is a period during which undergraduate and graduate students with F-1 status who have completed or have been pursuing their degrees for more than three months are permitted by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to work for one year on a student visa towards getting practical training to complement their education On completion of the one year OPT; a student can later apply for work on a H1 B visa (work permit visa).
For STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) course graduate they can get 36 months and for NON- STEM course graduates can get 12 months for OPT.
How to find a job?
Career Services– Your university will offer a range of career support services to students. They will be able to help you with your job search, resume, and applications. Your university may also offer special career events, such as expos or lectures where you can hear from employers in your area of study.
Get registered on Various Job Portals– There are some very good portals which have latest listing of good job offers. Get listed over there, stay active and respond to various opening.
Networking– Nothing works better than networking. Share your plans with all your friends and other circles there that you are reaching there. Most Jobs get filled up by networking only
Research the employer portal and websites– either via employer’s website or calling their offices to get more information can collect. Do searches on-line to see if you can find any articles or other information about the company. The more you research the company, the better chance you will have at an interview.
Graduates: $ 69,000- $ 76,000 per annum
Undergraduates:$ 51,000- $ 66,000 per annum
The United States is home of many cultures and a wide variety of ethnic groups, traditions, and values. Aside from the Native Americans, native Hawaiian, and Native Alaskan populations, nearly all Americans or their ancestors settled or immigrated within the past five centuries. Mainstream American culture is a western culture largely derived from the traditions of European immigrants with influences from many other sources, such as traditions brought by slaves from Africa. More recent immigration from Asia and especially Latin America has added to diversity with multicultural phenomena.
Mainstream American cuisine is similar to that in other Western countries. Wheat is the primary cereal grain with about three-quarters of grain products made of wheat flour. Different dishes such as apple pie, fried chicken, pizza, hamburgers, and hot dogs derive from the recipes of various immigrants. French fries, Mexican dishes such as burritos and tacos, and pasta dishes freely adapted from Italian sources. Americans drink three times as much coffee as tea.
Despite what you may have heard, the U.S. is not a dangerous country, in fact it is safe. No matter where you travel either in U.S. or abroad there are common threads of safety that you can string along in all your travels. Most of the educational institutions have coordinated safety plans to protect you. Once you arrive on your campus you should check-in with the international student office. This office will provide you with orientation session that will give you specific information that will enhance your educational, cultural, and social and safety experience while studying in the U.S.
Unlike many other countries, the United States does not provide socialized health care. It will be helpful for you to learn about the local health care system before it is actually needed. The American health care system is one of the best (and most expensive) in the world. Most college and university campuses offer some type of general medical care; services vary from basic first-aid and treatment of minor ailments to sophisticated multi-doctor primary care centers offering x-rays, laboratory tests, prescription drugs and access to specialists. The cost of on-campus medical services is normally not very expensive.
Public transportation in the U.S. might not seem as well developed as compared to Europe and other developed countries. Depending on where you live, you could find some or all of the following options:
The subway system provides underground trains that usually operate 24 hours a day in some of the largest U.S. cities. Route maps and schedules can be obtained from the ticket office. You can save money by purchasing a multiple-ride ticket or monthly pass.
City-operated buses run specific routes in mid-size and large U.S. cities. They operate on defined schedules that get them to certain mapped out locations around the city at precise times. Route maps and schedules are posted at bus stops, public buildings and may be available online. You must pay the fare by exact change in coins, or you can purchase multiple-ride tickets or monthly passes. Often bus companies offer student discounts, so check out that option.
Some colleges and universities run small shuttle buses in and around the campus. Students can usually ride at no cost or a small fee.
Sometimes you can find or arrange a carpool with others who need to go to the same destination as you do at similar times. Several students could join together to get from their apartment complex to the university in everyday.
While you can call a taxi in most U.S. towns and cities, they are a relatively expensive method of transportation in the US. The driver often expects a 15% tips in addition to the metered fare which is based on time, distance and cost. So you have to book online taxi facilities.
Sometime, international students decide to purchase a used car for transportation while in United States. Depending on your location and the availability of public transportation, as well as your distance from your school or job, you may decide having a care makes sense.