Applying to business school is not only about your credentials, previous experience or career goals, but also about paperwork! As with everything else in the MBA process, we strongly recommend not only that you are informed about MBA Visa requirements to study abroad but also the processes to obtain it. This means investing time and energy to understand the intricacies of the visa process will help make sure everything goes according to plan.
US, Europe, UK, Australia and Canada have different requirements and options for Visas and for the legal status you have after you completed your MBA, in case you want to stay in the country of your choice. Let’s review some of them.
After you receive confirmation from the b-school of your choice that you have been accepted, you can start with the Visa process. For the US, you have to apply at the US Embassy for the F-1 Visa. It allows you to stay in the US for the full length of the academic program plus 60 days. You have to maintain a full-time course load and complete your studies on time according to the MBA program of your choice.
With this Visa, you can work 20 hours per week on campus and full time during the holiday season. Your partner can apply for the F-2 Visa to go with you, but he/she cannot work during the program.
To stay in the US after your MBA program is completed, you have several options:
Optional Practical Training allows you to stay and work in the United States for 12 months after graduating. It is a temporary employment opportunity in a field directly related to that of the study of the student. To be eligible for the OPT, you have to complete one academic year in the US.
There are two types of OPT:
OPT for STEM Students
If you want to stay in the US after your MBA, a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Mathematics) designated program is an option you need to have in mind: STEM Designated Degree Programs make it possible for international graduates to remain stateside for an additional 24 months after graduation and receive training through work experience. That means students with STEM-designated master’s degrees can work in the U.S. for up to three years after graduation without a H1-B visa.
There are many MBA programs in the US which are designated as STEM courses. These are general business degrees with an emphasis on STEM applications. They include accounting, business analytics, decision theory, finance, economics, information technology, law, marketing, management, statistics, and strategy while providing business skills to be successful in management and leadership roles.
Here is the list of US Business Schools offering STEM MBA Programs: https://poetsandquants.com/2020/04/20/all-the-stem-programs-at-major-u-s-business-schools
The H-1B visa is an employment-based, non-immigrant visa for temporary workers. You can transfer your F-1 student visa to an H-1B visa if your US employer is willing to sponsor you. With an H-1B visa, you can live and work for up to 6 years in the US. If you work for the same employer for 4 years, your employer can file for employment-based permanent residency in the fifth year of your employment. This will extend your visa duration past 6 years limit.
According to a poll conducted by Transparent Career, Technology (28.2%) and Consulting (21.9%) companies sponsor the most H-1B visas, followed by Manufacturing (5.3%) and Financial Services (5.3%).
The O-1 non-immigrant visa is for the individual who possesses extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics, or who has a demonstrated record of extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry and has been recognized nationally or internationally for those achievements.
The green card is the key to permanent residency. However, it is difficult to acquire because of the huge demand for it. But as an international student, you’ll have an advantage in receiving a green card status because you’ve already spent a considerable amount of time living in the United States legally. A green card lets you work anywhere in the US, receive government benefits, and live in the US indefinitely. More info in https://www.uscis.gov/greencard/eligibility-categories
If you are a European Union (EU) citizen, you will not need to apply for a visa. If you are a non-EU citizen, you will need to apply for a long-term student visa.
If you hold an Italian/Spanish or other EU country passport, check the EU BLUE CARD. There is a special work permit only for highly skilled and qualified employees which is not subject to quotas. Conditions and requirements vary from country to country, but in general, you need an employer to be your sponsor. As you’ll see below, most countries offer a 6 month or one year stay after graduation to look for a job. This is when you might consider applying for the EU Blue Card if you have an European passport.
The long-stay student visa valid as a residence permit for students (visa long séjour valant titre de séjour étudiant, abbreviated to VLS-TS “étudiant”) allows you to stay in France for the duration of the course to pursue higher education studies. You must first apply to enroll in a higher education institution through the platform “Études en France”.Your visa application will be automatically sent to the French consular authorities of your home country through the platform. With this visa you can work for a maximum of 20 hours per week.
A spouse or registered partner and dependent children of an international student can apply for a permit to stay/residence in France.
The titre de séjour “recherche d’emploi / création d’entreprise” (“job seeker/new business creator”) is a one-year residence permit (with exceptions) that is granted to foreign (non-EU / Swiss) students who have recently graduated (or about to graduate) with a masters degree from a recognized French higher education institution. It allows you to stay in France and look for a job that is linked to your studies, work on the side, and at the same time also allows you to create a business if you so desire.
The job hunting permit gives you a right to search for a job and work for the entire duration of its validity, and is valid for ALL employers, in much the same way as you would as a student: 20 hours a week (part-time) for one year. The alternative is 35 hours a week (full-time) for 6 months). If you find a job that is related to your diploma, you can work full time, but it should be at least 1.5 times the minimum wage. With this permit you can start working right away once you have signed the contract (if you do not have the job hunting permit, you cannot do this).
After the job seeker/new business creator permit:
Find more useful info here:
Student visa (type D) allows you to obtain the Residence Card for foreign students (TIE). The TIE is a temporary permit that lets you stay in the country for the period of your studies. TIE is valid for a maximum of one academic year and can be renewed annually until you finish your studies. International students are permitted to work for up to 20 hours per week while studying in Spain.
Your spouse or children under 18 can usually join you in Spain if you are there on a study visa for more than six months. You will need to show that you can financially support them as well as yourself and your course fees.
The job search visa is a residence permit granted to non-EU citizens who have finished their studies in Spain so they can extend their time in the country for one additional year, time in which they can find a job or start their own company.
BUT you are not allowed to work in Spain with this residence permit. This visa is the bridge to getting a work permit. So once you find a job offer, you will need to initiate the work permit application process to be able to work. Even though you cannot work with this visa, it is a required step for being able to do it.
Once you have found a job, you will need to change your residence permit to a regular work permit. Here you can start working for a company, or you can create your own one:
If you aren’t from the EU or EEA, then it’s likely you’ll need a long term D (permesso di soggiorno per studio) visa before you can study in Italy. This type of visa is for people who will be in the country longer than three months. You can work in Italy for max. 20 hours per week.
You can apply for a visa for your family (spouse, dependent children) at the Italian Embassy or Consulate in your home country. Please note that accompanying relatives cannot work or study in Italy. It is also not possible to change your visa status once you are in Italy
If you want to work in Italy full time or remain in Italy after the expiration of your student permit, you will need to convert it into a permit for employment or self-employment. Holders of valid study residence permit who get a full-time job offer can apply for conversion into a residence permit for subordinate work (permesso di soggiorno lavoro subordinato). Holders of valid study residence permit meeting the requirements for self-employment in Italy can apply for conversion into a residence permit for self-employment (permesso di soggiorno lavoro autonomo).
If you need more time for job searching you can register as unemployed and apply for a permit for the purpose of job searching or entrepreneurship (Permesso di soggiorno per ricerca lavoro o imprenditorialita‘ degli studenti). This kind of permit allows students to legally live in Italy after their graduation while searching for a job/start a business for max 1 year.
Other options? Have a look at #STARTUPHUB. It’s a program for those willing to set up or join a Startup in Italy.
The German Student Visa is the standard student visa for international students who have been admitted to a German university and are ready to start their studies at a full-time university program. You can work up to 20 hours per week while studying.
Spouses, partners and/or children may be permitted to reside in Germany while you study, provided certain conditions are met. These conditions include having sufficient funds and living space. Cases are decided on an individual basis at the Germany embassy
If you want to stay in Germany to find work after graduating, you should start planning for this while you’re still a student. It’s highly beneficial to have proficiency in the German language to find work in Germany, as the number of jobs open to you will be very limited without it. Students from non-EU countries who wish to work in Germany after graduating can extend their residence permit for up to 18 months to find work relating to their studies. As soon as you’ve found a job role you’d like to accept, you should apply for a German residence permit or EU Blue Card (similar to the US Green Card). You can remain in Germany while your application is pending. If you’d like to stay in Germany and become a permanent resident, you can apply for a ‘settlement permit’ as early as two years after receiving your permanent residence permit or EU Blue Card.
D type study visa: To apply, you must simply complete an online application form on the website of the Irish Naturalization and Immigration Service. After filling the online application process, follow the instructions and submit your supporting documentation. A D Study Visa allows students to work full time during the months of June, July, August and September and from 15 December to 15 January. For the rest of the year you can only work up to 20 hours per week.
In general, you won’t be able to bring your family with you to Ireland on a study visa. If you wish a spouse to join you during your studies they will have to apply for a visa separately — your visa status has no impact on theirs. Any children you have are also unable to join you in Ireland on a study visa.
If you want to remain in the country to seek employment or apply for a green card or permit, you can apply for the Third Level Graduate Programme. The intention of the programme is to allow legally resident Irish educated non-EEA graduates holding an award of a recognised Irish awarding body to remain in Ireland after their studies. This should be for the purpose of seeking graduate level employment and applying for a general employment permit, a critical skills employment permit or research hosting agreement.
Graduates at level 9 (Master’s holders) who qualify for the Programme will be granted permission for twelve months initially. This will be renewed for a further period of twelve months (subject to overall eight year limit) where the graduate satisfies the immigration authorities that he or she has taken appropriate steps to access suitable graduate level employment.
More info here: http://www.inis.gov.ie/en/INIS/Pages/Student%20Pathway
As soon as you get the acceptance letter from the Swiss school/university, you should schedule an appointment at the Swiss embassy or consulate in your area to get a Student D Visa. Students can hold jobs but for no more than 15 hours a week, otherwise, they must apply for a work permit.
Any spouse or dependent children you have may be able to join you in Switzerland under family reunification. Family members can also work. As a student, you will have to show that you can financially support your family in addition to you, and have ample accommodation for them.
After completing study, students have to get a residency permit from cantonal migration offices. This permit will allow you to stay for six months in Switzerland. The purpose of this extension is to allow students to look for a full time or permanent job. Notice that:
You will need a Provincial Residence Permit, officially known as Machtiging tot Voorlopig Verblijf (MVV). This is also known as the permit to enter the Netherlands. The MVV is applied for on the student’s behalf by the host university. MVV allows entry in the country for a six-month period. Most of the courses at universities last for 1 to 4 years, a mere MVV will not suffice. Hence, residence permit (VVR). Once you enter the country, you need to apply for VVR or a Residence Permit. The VVR is also applied for by the host university. VVR is permitted for study purposes only and is valid for the duration of the programme the student had enrolled in. There is another condition attached with the validity of VVR. It stays valid provided the student scores 50% of credit throughout the course duration.
If you wish to continue living in The Netherlands once you’ve finished your studies, it is important to make sure you have the appropriate visa. There are two main paths that recent graduates can follow in order to update their student visa and to be allowed to work without requiring a work permit. These are as follows:
Tier 4 UK Visa is valid for the duration of your studies. You are allowed to work up to 20 hours a week during term time, and full-time during non-study periods. Your dependents are permitted to work or study while in the UK. You cannot apply for your visa more than three months before your course start date as stated on your CAS (Confirmation of Acceptance for Studies) and you must apply within six months of the CAS issue date.
Your partner and children (‘dependants’) may be able to apply to come to the UK or stay longer in the UK.
International students who start their studies in the UK in 2020 or after will benefit from the new post-study work visa (PSW) for graduates. This usually means a work and residence permit of 2 years after graduation. The new visa rules will come into effect for all international students that begin their studies in autumn 2020 or later. During the first 2 years after graduation, PSW visa holders can work in any job they can find, and the goal is for them to transition into a general work visa afterwards.
If you hold an European passport, it currently seems likely that, after Brexit, EU citizens would have to apply for the PSW visa to stay in the UK after their studies. When PSW visa expires, anyone who wants to stay longer in the UK will have to apply to transfer to a ‘general work visa’ (or ‘skilled work visa’). For this, your job must fit the visa requirements for a Tier 2 visa, the ‘general work visa’. You can check the Tier 2 eligibility criteria here: https://www.gov.uk/tier-2-general/eligibility
Another alternative after graduation is the Innovator Visa: You can apply for an Innovator visa if:
Please keep informed if you’re thinking about going to the UK: Visas and permit situations may change due to new Brexit deals. More info here: https://workpermit.com/news/brexit-day-and-uk-immigration-and-visa-update-31-jan-20-2020013
Visa Subclass 500 is the student visa that is valid for the duration of your studies. The type of program (masters, PHD, etc) and its length will determine the length of time that you can stay in the country legally. It will also allow you some time to remain in Australia at the end of your course. This time can range from one to three months, depending on the length of your course and the month in which it ends. If you are studying a course that is longer than ten months and which ends in November or December, for example, your student visa would usually end on March 15 of the following year.
With this visa, you may work up to 40 hours per fortnight (14 days) during term time, and full-time in the holidays. Work that is a formal, registered part of your course is not included in the limit. You can enter Australia with this visa up to 90 days before your course starts.
All existing family unit members are required to be declared on the initial student 500 visa application, whether or not there is any intention for them to join the main applicant in Australia or not at any stage. Failure to do so will result in the dependents not being eligible for a subsequent visa as a dependent of the student visa holder.
If you wish to stay in Australia after completion of an MBA degree, there are different options to do this. Employment sponsorships are commonly secured, but it is important to note that over the past few years, it has become increasingly difficult for MBAs to get employee sponsorships that lead to citizenship. The process to citizenship typically takes 4-5 years. There are a few options available for staying with temporary visas after your MBA.
General Skilled Migration (GSM) is a different process to get Permanent Residency (PR) after an MBA from Australia. It is usually driven by the labor market needs of Australia. The purpose of this program is to attract highly employable people for migration to Australia. You need to have a relevant skill area and also relevant work experience to become eligible to apply for PR. For this, you need to have a minimum of 65 points in the Points Test (required points change so check this). There are multiple private visa consultants in Australia that can help you through this process. You can apply for this program as soon as you arrive. You must be prepared to look regularly for potential job opportunities in different regions/ areas that may not fit exactly with your background, long-term vision.
Check this out for more info on Visas: https://immi.homeaffairs.gov.au/visas/working-in-australia/permanent-work-visas
Since 2019, locations outside of Melbourne, Sydney and Brisbane will have access to the 25,000 visa places, priority processing and international university graduates who live in these locations will be eligible to apply for more time in Australia on a post-study work visa. Major regional centres are: Perth, Adelaide, Gold Coast, Sunshine Coast Canberra Newcastle/Lake Macquarie, Wollongong/Illawarra Geelong, Hobart.
You will get a study permit that is not a visa. It doesn’t let you enter Canada. You may also need a visitor visa or an electronic travel authorization (eTA). If immigration approves your study permit, immigration will issue one (visitor visa or electronic travel authorization) to you with your study permit.
A study permit is usually valid for the length of your study program, plus an extra 90 days. The 90 days let you prepare to leave Canada or apply to extend your stay. You can qualify to work on or off-campus for up to 20 hours per week during university semesters and full-time during breaks such as the winter or summer holidays, without the need for a work permit.
You may be able to bring your spouse or common-law partner, and dependent children, with you to Canada. They may be eligible for a study or work permit, or a visitor visa. You must submit their applications online when you apply for your study permit.
Students in Canada who complete a two-year master’s program can automatically receive a three-year work permit (PGWP). And many MBAs obtain their permanent residence during or after the program, giving them the opportunity to stay longer term in Canada.
You may be eligible for a post-graduation work permit (PGWP) if you graduated from a designated learning institution (DLI) and want to stay in Canada temporarily to work. If your program was more than 8 months but less than 2 years, they may give you a PGWP that’s valid for up to the same length as your study program.
If your program was 2 years or more, they may give you a PGWP that’s valid for 3 years.
Thanks for reading “MBA Visa Requirements to Study Abroad” written by Admissions Associate Ana Negishi
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