(Persia Digest) – The latest report published by the US State Department shows a sharp drop in the number of visa applications for higher education studies in the US by Iranian students.

Persia Digest (PD) reports that the US has been a number one destination for Iranian students for decades. But this has had a downward trend since Donald Trump came to power.

The US State Department’s figures show that F1 and J1 visas issued for Iranians from 2016 to 2019 have dropped sharply. F1 visas have dropped from 2650 in 2016 to 1433 in 2018, and J1 visas have dropped from 846 in 2016 to less than 500 in 2018.

Most student visas are F1. J1 visas are issued for both students and professors.

Reports also show that the US has neither accepted nor rejected visa applications for many Iranians, leaving them in limbo in a long-drawn process.


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Most student visas are F1. J1 visas are issued for both students and professors.

Reports also show that the US has neither accepted nor rejected visa applications for many Iranians, leaving them in limbo in a long-drawn process.

The latest figures released by Unesco in 2019 also show that the number of Iranians studying overseas during 2011-2017 has been negative in some years, showing no significant rise in others. In 2011, Iran ranked 12 among countries sending students abroad. This rank dropped to 18 in 2017.

The complicated US visa process, the changing political and social situation under the Trump Administration, increasing number of universities in Iran, the rising price of education overseas, together with new budding businesses and startups in Iran have been cited as reasons for fewer Iranians wanting to emigrate.

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