Streamlining the enrolment process for studying in the US

For any student pursuing a degree in the U.S., one of the roadblocks is working with the various government Departments. In order to streamline the process for students trying to meet enrolment requirements while also applying for a student visa, the State Department developed the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs. The primary network supporting students wishing to study in the U.S. within the bureau is EducationUSA


“… students wishing to study in the U.S”

EducationUSA and Their Role For International Students

EducationUSA works directly with U.S. colleges and universities to ensure international students find the right schools and degree programmes. Their network is very extensive, with advisory centers in 170 countries. EducationUSA accomplishes this by providing information to interested students on the latest educational requirements and trends current to the U.S. higher education system. Many schools work closely with the programme office to keep this information up-to-date in order to recruit the best students who wish to apply. In addition to basic recruiting information to potential students, these centres also assist U.S. schools in how to make their websites, faculty and campuses more open to foreign students; making the educational experience better for both parties. 


“EducationUSA works directly with U.S. colleges and universities …”

Most of these centres are located in American consulates and embassies.  However, in cities that may not have either office, EducationUSA will have personnel in host nation universities, U.S. and host nation Non-governmental organisations, as well as bi-national cultural centres that share the same goal of improving international relations through higher education. Counsellors at these centres all receive training on the U.S. College and university system as well as the application process and how to assist students who have been accepted in pursuing financial aid to pay for school. All training has been approved by the State Department. Each centre and its employees are required to follow the EducationUSA ethical standards and will not work with commission-based recruiting agencies. 

Start With These Five Steps

Interested students (and their parents) can also find information about this State Department network through their local colleges and universities as well as other public forums. Of course, further details can be found at the EducationUSA website as well. One of the most useful pages there for prospective students is “Five Steps To Study”. Every student and parent should read this before deciding to pursue an education in the U.S. It provides excellent data on:

  1. Researching your options
  2. Completing an application
  3. Financing college studies
  4. Student visa application
  5. Preparing for to leave for school


“Five Steps to Study.”

Support to students doesn’t stop at a checklist or helping with an application though. Through its parent agency (Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs), EducationUSA sponsors a series of grants to U.S. schools in order to help them expand enrolment of their foreign student programmes. On an individual level, their Counsellors also have the latest information on scholarships and grants available at any university in the U.S. a streaming the student would be interested in attending. 

For more information on financial aid to attend U.S. schools, the following websites have excellent information for foreign students:

International Financial Aid (IEFA) – Created in 1998, IEFA tracks the most popular scholarships awarded to international students. They also work with one of the largest providers of student loans for those desiring to attend school in the U.S.    

National Association of Foreign Student Advisors (NAFSA) – Founded in 1948, this group of educators and teachers has an extensive list of institutional financial aid as well as private grants and scholarships available to undergraduate students who wish to study in the U.S.

Student Debt Relief (SDR) – SDR has not only an extensive knowledge base of U.S. schools, scholarships and grants but also maintains one of the most informative news blogs on education, student loan and loan repayment issues in the U.S.

Preparing for college and university is always an exciting and difficult time. Preparing to travel and live in another country at the same time increases both aspects and can overwhelm some students.  This is why the State Department created the Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs as well as EducationUSA. The network’s purpose is to eliminate the difficult aspects of university life while making sure the experience is as exciting and rewarding as they can make it. To stay abreast of requirements and changes to this and other programmes, please visit us regularly. 

This is a guest post from Demetrios Sourmaidis. He is currently a writer for whose primary objective is to educate and assist student loan borrowers on the many federal programs available to them, including loan forgiveness.