Date: July 2017
Visa Interview Experience:
There was a correction I had to make in my DS-160 form with Place of Birth.
While filling the DS-160, you could happen to just oversee the field for Place of Birth. I must have presumed it to be current residence. It might be more common because there is a utility shop besides the Visa center with a hoarding DS-160 correction done here.
This generates a new DS-160 number and you do not have to update this anywhere else. Just take the confirmation page and get back to business.
Rest of the process is very smooth.
At least at Mumbai, if you have an early appointment and cannot reach on time for some reason (mine was form correction), do not panic, you can get in any time before 04:30 PM on the appointment day.
- DS-160 confirmation page
- Appointment conformation page
- There is a long queue outside and then inside. Use this time to just gather your calmness, than find it frustrating.
- Don’t depend too much on rehearsed answers. The interview is about YOU, not the university.
- I did not do a single mock interview, just keep playing VO vs You in the head few days before the interview.
- Once you enter the building where interviews are held, you will start hearing lot of chatter. You will hear VO’s questions and answers which people give. My suggestion is play along rather than ignore. Imagine what you might answer, if you were in that person’s place right now. This will help you calm your nerves, because you will feel confident that you can pass this easily.
- VO is interested in why YOU want to pursue higher education. Answering them with rankings and general outlook of the university really puts them off. Talk about some professor you might want to work, check the universities page again if there is something unique about it, or answer something related to research interest that this college will help you get ahead.
- Keep a smiling face throughout the interview. It’s not an interrogation.
Once you reach the consulate, it only takes about 90 mins maximum to be done with all formalities.
VO: Hello, your I-20 and Passport please.
Me: Yes Ma’am. Passed the documents.
VO: Why higher education in US?
Me: US has well established universities and a huge research presence.
VO: Why Washington State University?
Me: (I had prepared to answer with 3 points. Academic curriculum, research environment, and professors) As soon as I said, WSU has a good academic curriculum and..
VO: Every university has a good academic curriculum, why this university?
Me: (Do not feel nervous at all, it’s just another question. Here, I knew she was not interested in rehearsed answers)
Spoke about a new research grant that the university got which will boost the research opportunities to work with and help align my academic interests with newer research focus.
VO: (now seemingly convinced) GRE score?
Me: 309. 157 in Quant.
VO: When did you graduate?
VO: What have you been doing since then?
Me: Working with XX, which is an IT company, since 5 years.
VO: Who is sponsoring you?
Me: My father will be my primary sponsor and I also have some savings of my own.
VO: What does your father do?
Me: He is working with the state government under road development department.
VO: She asked again, Sir this does not explain what he does?
Me: I said he manages and supervises road development projects in the state.
VO: Yeah, that’s better. Education loan?
Me: Yes, XX Lacs.
VO: Interest rate?
VO: Okay, I am approving your Visa. Thank you!
Me: Thank you Ma’am.
Note: Content in this article is taken from a public forum moderated by Yocket. Personal details which may reveal the identity have been removed in order to maintain annonimity.