Arbitrary wrote:Right now I'm also considering visa options. Here are some of my insights:
1) The most important difference between J and F visas is whether your (international) spouse may work or study during your stay. This is critical for me, as I am moving to the US with my spouse.
2) The second most important difference is related to "home residency" demand after you complete your studies. F visa holders do not seem to be subject to this demand. J visa holders may be subject to 2 years of home residency, but only if some conditions apply (specifically, coming from certain countires, studying certain professions, and/or being funded by a state entity).
3) Some prerequisites apply to obtaining J visa, mostly related to the expected income. As I understand it, most physics PhD student who get tuition waviers and stipends are eligible to a J visa.
4) Also, taxes seem to be a bit different between these two options, but I don't think my current knowledge of this subject carries any credibility.
5) In my opinion, post graduation options (OPT etc.) seem to be more of a formality than anything else, especially in physics. If you find a post-doctoral position (and "home residency" deosn't apply to you), I hardly think immigration will deny you a visa and work permit.
hermitw wrote:But I am afraid that I may not be able to do one or two posdoc in US after graduation. It seems that J1 student visa may be extended for up to 36 month after graduation for posdoc (I am not quite sure yet) .
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