U.S. Educational Advising Center
In May 2001, the US Embassy’s Public Diplomacy section launched the USEAC in order to provide more comprehensive services to serious Zimbabwean students seeking to further their education in the United States. The USEAC is a membership-based center, that works closely and personally with its members to ensure that they are successful in identifying appropriate colleges and universities, completing the application requirements for those universities and financing their education. Annual membership fee is US$ 40
Member services and resources comprise the following:
- Individual Advising with trained Educational Advisors
- Internet and Email Access for Admissions and College Selection Purposes
- Educational Reference Book and Software Collection
- College and University Video Library
- Test preparation reference library, software and practice tests, lending library and bookstoreMock SAT examinations at discount
- Workshops and seminars on application and standardized test preparation as well as guest speakers from US colleges and universities
- Individual admissions file kept at center with advising tailored to your qualifications, interests and needs
- 10% discount on bookstore purchases
- Pre-Departure Orientation Program
USEAC Membership Criteria
In order to become a member of the USEAC, a student must submit the following:
- Completed application form
- 2 driver license size photographs
- photocopy of academic certificate showing 5 “O” levels including English, math and science (undergrad) or university transcript showing 2.2 or higher pass (graduate)
Financing Your Education
The average cost of an academic year in the USA including tuition, fees and living expenses varies from US$20,000 to US$70,000 per year. This figure does not include air transportation from Zimbabwe to the U.S. institution. Substantial financial assistance for undergraduates is very difficult to obtain. Students without their own finances must have excellent academic records at “O” and “A” level or be nationally-ranked athletes in order to compete for the few available scholarships from colleges and universities.
Foreign students are allowed to work 10 – 20 hours per week for the college/university they are attending to earn pocket money. Estimated earnings for one academic year would be ~U.S.$1500 – $3000. Foreign students cannot apply to work off-campus except for rare special circumstances.
Scholarships And Financial Aid
International students should initiate planning for U.S. study at least 12-18 months in advance of their intended enrollment. Advanced planning is more critical when financial assistance is required.
Be prepared to be interviewed briefly on the spot by the Consular Officer before your visa is processed. The Consular Officer will need to ascertain that you are a serious student. She wants to know about your plans for study, how and why you chose your college/university, the appropriateness of your qualifications to attend that school, what degree and field of study you plan to pursue, and how you will use your degree once you return to Zimbabwe. You will need to establish Zimbabwe as your country of permanent future residence by demonstrating your ties to family and work in Zimbabwe, as a student visa is only intended for your period of study and does not permit you to seek employment in the United States. Note that being accepted to a college or university is in no way a guarantee of being granted a visa.
A variety of SAT/GRE/GMAT/TOEFL/ACT Study Guides, some including CD-ROMs and cassette tapes are available for sale, ranging in price from $20 to $30.
* This office does not offer scholarships, nor do we guarantee anyone admission to a university or college.
Applying for an F-1 Student Visa
When you have been accepted by a US college or university, have received your I-20 form and have secured the necessary funding for your studies, you are ready to apply for a student visa. Below are some of the fees associated with your student visa, and information about student advising and funding your education.
Education Services – Fee
- SEVIS fees is $350
- To pay for your visa fee of US$160, you need to have made an online application and schedule an appointment first. In addition to the SEVIS FEE, at the time of the interview, each individual applicant applying for a visa is required to pay a non-refundable fee in U.S. dollars only at the Embassy.
- At the interview, you must show the Consular Officer proof of finances for your entire period of study and proof of availability of funds for first year. Such proof can include recent bank statements, a letter from your sponsor or scholarship source, a letter from the school stating your financial aid or scholarship offer. Bring as much and as current proof of funding as possible.
- Someone else can also pay this fee for you and fax or mail you the receipt. Some colleges and universities are paying SEVIS fees for their applicants and billing the students when they arrive on campus. Ask your school for their SEVIS fee policy if you are having difficulty paying yours.
- You need to go to the U.S. Embassy website. Click the “Visas” tab on the top menu bar, then “Online Visa Application” in the Important Links box on the right.
- For students’ visa at the Embassy, located at 2 Lorraine Drive, Bluffhill, Harare, you must bring the following documents organized and ready to show the Consular Officer:
- Completed visa application form and any supplementary forms that the bank has given you. SEVIS fee receipt
- Computerized SEVIS 1-20 form sent to you from the college or university (NB: all details on the I-20 must be correct, must match your passport, and the first day of classes must not have passed.)
- Letter of acceptance from the college or university.
- Proof of finances for your entire period of study and proof of availability of funds for first year. Such proof can include recent bank statements, a letter from your sponsor or scholarship source, a letter from the school stating your financial aid or scholarship offer.. Bring as much and as current proof of funding as possible. Proof of finances must be in foreign currency from an off-shore account.
- Originals of your academic qualifications: “O” level and “A” level certificates for undergraduates, diplomas or university degrees for graduate students.
- One front-facing photograph, either black and white or color, 50mm by 50mm. (Note: Do not use photo booths as they do not produce clear photographs.)
- Your current passport which must be valid for another calendar year.
- Each individual applicant applying for a visa is required to pay a non-refundable fee in U.S. dollars only at the Embassy.
At the interview, you must show the Consular Officer proof of finances for your entire period of study and proof of availability of funds for first year. Such proof can include recent bank statements, a letter from your sponsor or scholarship source, a letter from the school stating your financial aid or scholarship offer. Bring as much and as current proof of funding as possible.