Evanescent Thoughts

Evanescent Thoughts

F1 Visa Experience

with 16 comments


I finally got my F1 Visa for US approved today at Chennai Consulate 🙂 .. Actually been a while since I updated anything on my blog. So bear with the abrupt posting 😛 .. I am headed to Univ of Wisconsin Madison(wisc mad) for MS in CS with Aid .  I  had got all my docs into a harmonium folder and  reached the consulate office at around 7 . My interview appointment time was 8.00am .  It was raining heavily and just when I reached , they were beginning to let people in. Was surprised to see auto guys pulling out umbrellas from their autos and selling it to applicants who had not brought the umbrella when it rained ( I never expected they would let us carry umbrellas inside when they don’t even  allow electronic watches ).  After  the initial screening outside, they checked my file folder and stuff and let me inside the main counters where they verified the ds160 confirmation page and  collected all the necessary docs like sevis , hdfc receipt, i20 , admission letter , passport etc . I had a slight delay here because the guy said that I need to submit a Photograph without specs . The one I had submitted in my ds160 had specs on. But I remember reading on the VFS site that spectacles are allowed if they are for medical reasons.  So they made me wait in the photo queue over there. The photo guy comes only around 8. So I had to wait all the while. Also the guys in this docs counters were all Indians. So they were a bit pissed off and showing unhappy faces at ppl who didnt understand whts to be done( at least the guy in the counter where I went was like that ).

The photo guy turned up around 8.15am (yes !! he was an Indian given his punctuality 😛 ). Got my photos. Cost me 100 bucks and went back to the counter to get back the docs and submitted the finger prints. Now after this,  the counter guy gave me a folder with  my passport , DD for the change in visa fee, HDFC receipt, SEVIS receipt, I20,  Admission letters, Funding letter from College. I thought my course completion certi should also be added to this list and put it myself once I was well away from the counter.

After this I went on to this counter where I had to pay the extra amount due to change in the VISA fee from $131 to $140. Took a couple of mins and got the receipt. People who opted to  pay by cash were delayed. Also, once inside, the Interview time didnt matter as people stood in the line arbitrarily as and when their previous task was completed. I headed straight to the VO(Visa Officer) counter. They had 2 counters with VO, on the either side of the 12 counter array where docs were put into the folder. The VO guy was a middle aged American, a bit tanned, very calm and polite( unlike the Indians in the other counters :P). So I put up a big confident smile on my face and went ahead. And this is the conversation as I remember 😛

VO : Good Morning Sir.
ME : Good Morning Officer.
(The VO takes my blue folder and looks at the docs. Asks me to give my Individual mark sheets. I asked if he wanted the transcript and he insisted on seeing the Individual Mark sheets. And then he asked me to give me my GRE and TOEFL Score cards. Though he never looked into them. He went through carefully through my mark sheets and I was worried if he would give me  a  pink slip cos I had taken a course on Crypto and couple of TAL items 😛 )
VO : Please take back your mark sheets sir .
ME : Thank you.
(Now he looks into my i20 and enters into the SEVIS database and checks out my college and stuff
VO : So why did you choose this university sir ?
(At this point , I couldn hear him properly . So I signalled him to adjust the mike volume and he happily did )
Me : Its got a very reputed group of faculty and course structure and besides, its ranked in the top ten for my area sir.
VO : So whats your Area of Interest
( Bang !!  RED ALERT !! I begin to   get back my senses and  recollect the comfortable answer that I had in mind which would not  end me up in TAL )
Me : I am planning to work on Database Management Systems ( Well 😀 )
(  And this is when the interview got a bit Techy)
VO : So what all DB s are you familiar with.
Me : Mysql , SQL blah blah blah ..
VO : Good .. So you know Oracle ??
( This is when I realised he was not this computer guy :P)
Me: Yes sir… But oracle as such is a company and not a DB language. Though I  have worked on Oracle’s SQL .. and recently MySql came under Oracle as they purchased Sun Micro Systems.
VO : Yeah yeah !! I get it .. They are DB s related to Microsoft. So what  interests you in this.
Me : I am interested in how data could be efficiently and effectively stored and organized  sir.
( And there ends the tech part.. was running arnd for abt 40 secs.. )
VO : Good . And how  are you planning to cover your expenses?
Me : I have funding from the University Sir.
(By this time , I was a bit worried as he was questioning me more on what area  I am gonna work on.. So I thought I was gonna end up getting a pink slip .. Was almost prepared for it when he stretched his hands to pick up a white slip and pushed it towards me )
VO : We have an Orientation for Students headed to USA this evening ( and shows me the white slip that I misunderstood for a pink slip 😛 ). I am approving your VISA sir .. It ll be couriered to you in 2 days. Have a nice day 🙂
Me : Thank you sir 🙂

I was  going back with the conversation in my mind to get assured that I didnt get a pink slip and definitely got my VISA approved 😛 .. And then headed to the exit after confirming it with a lady over there 🙂

All izz well !! 😀

USA check list :

Acco (Check)
Flight Tickets (Check)
VISA(Check)
Shopping (Errr ??? )
Now R.I.P 😀
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Written by Sathya Narayanan

June 9, 2010 at 5:00 pm

16 Responses

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  1. SQL is NOT a database 🙂

    Ankit

    June 9, 2010 at 6:02 pm

    • tht was “SQL blah blah ” meaning i blaberred throwing some DB terms back in my head to the VISA guy 😛

      Sathya Narayanan

      June 9, 2010 at 6:08 pm

      • Actually those guys arent fools there .. they have the net to check if you arent telling non sense.
        During my first Visa interview, that guy asked me to solve a math problem (some 3 colour map theory or some thing like that) .. I spend about 35-40 mins on that problem while he went ahead with interview other people. And finally since I had no idea of what that mean, i explained what ever i could make out of it .. making sure that I dont say something wrong 🙂
        And finally after all this, I was issued a blue slip .. and got the Visa issued after 45 days!

        Hariharan Chandrasekaran

        June 10, 2010 at 3:35 am

      • u mean graph colouring ?? wow .. they asked so much ???

        Sathya Narayanan

        June 10, 2010 at 9:20 am

  2. Hi Sathya I feel happy to read that you got visa and heading to Univ of Wisconsin Madison
    On behalf of our school my best wishes

    Pragasam.G

    June 9, 2010 at 7:29 pm

    • Yo!

      Narendhranath

      June 10, 2010 at 12:00 am

    • Hello Sir, how are u btw!

      Narendhranath

      June 10, 2010 at 12:01 am

    • thank you sir 🙂 .. good to see u online 🙂

      Sathya Narayanan

      June 10, 2010 at 9:20 am

  3. Hey Sathya,

    Good to see your visa experience. Wishing you all the best !!

    vamsi

    June 9, 2010 at 11:17 pm

    • thank u .. it still takes me some time to realise that u r in chennai now … come home some time na 🙂

      Sathya Narayanan

      June 10, 2010 at 9:24 am

  4. 🙂 and welcome to airtel btw 😀

    venki

    June 10, 2010 at 4:18 pm

    • nice place to welcome me !!! 😛

      Sathya Narayanan

      June 10, 2010 at 5:20 pm

  5. Naren I am fine I feel happy to see all of you once again .Please contact me through mail ID:pragasamg@gmail.com
    Sathya I didn’t comment more on what you wrote about subject matter since
    I know nothing about that field . send me details about all of you.
    especially those who is going to come to BHEL
    Pragasam

    Pragasam.G

    June 10, 2010 at 7:38 pm

  6. dude, fore the nth time wat is this blue receipt.. i dunno anything abt the process so tell me

    and wats the pink/white slip etc?

    send me some links or something or a detailed maill

    nr

    June 11, 2010 at 10:08 pm

  7. Why is so hard to get a visa?

    Egypt visa

    September 26, 2010 at 3:38 pm

  8. I nead a db Visa

    Mohammed Ibrahim

    October 28, 2010 at 2:35 pm


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