There are a number of known benefits for those who apply for and are approved to receive the EB-5 visa. The EB-5 visa process is one of the quickest ways for a foreign national to obtain their permanent residency (green card). It is also one of the only viable options for foreigners with no familial ties to the United States to immigrate legally.
Obtaining permanent residency through the EB-5 visa gives an approved applicant and their dependents educational freedom that would otherwise have been unavailable to them. Many foreign nationals move themselves or their families to the United States in order to have access to some of the best academic institutions in the world (of which America has many). Education is often the main priority of those wanting to immigrate to the United States, as the level of academic growth possible in their home countries is often questionable or completely impossible.
Unlike many other visas, the EB-5 visa allows the approved applicant and their dependents to take up residence anywhere in the United States, which gives the applicant freedom to choose the environment best suited to them for their new lifestyle. This decision is often lead by where under-age or minor dependents can receive the best possible education and many new green card holders choose to settle in states that have an exceptional education system to gain access to these institutions for themselves or their dependents.
While there are other visas that allow foreign nationals to study in the United States, such as the F-1 student visa, these visas have limitations on where and for how long a visa holder can study in America. For the student visa, applicants must apply to the institution of choice, be accepted, and show proof of ability to pay the international student fees or financial sponsorship to cover all costs before they can apply for their visa – and they may still get rejected!
With the EB-5 visa, there are no restrictions on location or type of institution and, importantly, there are no restrictions on the length of study or stay in the United States. Holders of the F-1 visa must study for the length of time stipulated and, after graduating, must either almost immediately find a job (and therefore apply for another visa), continue their studies, or return to their home country. Eb-5 visa holders are free to study at any institution they desire once accepted and, due to their green card status, are not required to leave the United States after their studies are completed.
Taking up legal residency in the United States often unlocks academic and financial benefits not available to students under different visas, such as scholarships and government aid towards academic fees or costs. Another significant advantage of American residency is that many institutions have different fee structures depending on the status of the student applying. Fees, in general, are lower for permanent residents and citizens than they are for international students, often by thousands of dollars.
For example, Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), the top-rated engineering and technological university in the United States, costs an average per year of $70,000 USD for an undergraduate degree. On average, citizen and permanent resident students who apply for need-based aid pay only $23,000 USD per year – a 67% financial discount that is not fully available to international students. Over a four-year degree, the savings per year for permanent residents versus an international student is often into the hundreds of thousands of US dollars.
Many EB-5 applicants and their dependents take advantage of the educational opportunities that the United States offers, with many applicants returning to university to further their education or sending their dependents to the top schools available (from pre-school all the way to university).
Although there are numerous benefits to applying for the EB-5 visa, the most significant aspect for many foreign nationals is that it opens up a host of new opportunities that help to secure an educational future for themselves and their dependents.