With Indian students who had planned to go to the United States for further studies, unsure about how to proceed with the continued closure of the U.S. Consular Office (which issues visas), American universities have been reaching out to them with options, assurances and answers to their FAQs. Most American universities are offering online options until students can come on campus and hybrid courses thereafter.
The University of South Florida has gone a step ahead by announcing the “We Got U-SF Scholarship and Waiver” program, a one‐time scholarship to support students who are enrolled full‐time in the Fall 2020 semester – for online or on-campus classes. This gesture recognizes that students are going through a difficult phase and need all the encouragement and support they can get. As USF’s Dean of Admissions Dr. Glen Besterfield said in messages to the 22,000 eligible undergraduate and graduate students, including international students, who have been admitted to the University for Fall 2020: “As part of our continued commitment to student success, the University of South Florida wants to help support your academic goals during these unprecedented times.”
While most students from India admitted for Undergraduate programs are already on USF’s merit-based scholarships (making them ineligible for the $1350 UG scholarship), several hundred graduates admit from India have been offered over $2060. The most popular courses among Indian students applying to USF are Business Analytics and Information Systems, Electrical Engineering, Computer Science, Engineering Management, Industrial Engineering and Mechanical Engineering. Given the uncertainty of the visa situation, USF has taken a flexible approach and is offering students various enrollment options if they cannot come to campus by the opening Fall 2020 date of August 20. They can enroll in online classes and come to campus by January 2021.