Joined: 03 Jan 2011
, given: 3
VISA INTERVIEW EXPERIENCE [#permalink]
03 Jan 2011, 03:19
On April 29, I appeared before the US embassy for visa interview, which is probably the most tensed event of the odyssey. Let me share the cascade of events from getting I-20 till getting the visa.
After getting the I-20, I went to the Saimon overseas, the agency possibly recruited by US embassy to process the required documents, on the very next day. It is at Gulsan-1, behind the Uday tower, a 3 minutes walking distance from Gulsan-1 towards Gulsan-2. I collected the visa application form couple of days earlier, after getting the email of admission offer.
During submission of application form to Saimon center, the application and the attached papers (a photocopy of I-20 and passport and 2-copy DV-size photo) were submitted to the left counter first, with a young lady sitting behind. She checked the application for any necessary correction. Then she returned all the documents to submit those with the application fee of 9573/- to the right counter. Student applicants were getting priority as I got the interview schedule just with a one-day interval. Other applicants were given schedule after a week or so. I returned from Saimon center with a payment receipt and interview card.
On the day before my interview, I went to the American Center at Dhaka for the first time. They provide student counseling at a fee of 50 tk only, but I could not manage the appointment as my interview was on the very next day. It usually takes 5/6 days to schedule an appointment for counseling. They also offer a video of a visa officer regarding “preparation for visa interview”. It costs 50 tk also. I decided to watch the video to get some idea and I found it very useful. I would recommend all to have a look at that video and get the counseling if possible.
My appointment was on 11:30, and I was asked to be there at around 30 minutes earlier. DON’T TAKE ANY MOBILE PHONE, PEN DRIVE, CD WITH YOU. I did not know it. On the gate, the security guards refused to let me get in with my mobile phone and there is no system to deposit the phone. So I had to get back to Gulshan 2 and kept my mobile phone in a roadside shop. It was indeed a big hassle.
After passing the security check, I entered the waiting room and found few people sitting there. In front, a video was being shown regarding finger print scan. At around 11:20, I and three other student visa applicants were asked at Window #2 for finger print check. There a Bangladeshi young lady took my passport and the Saimon center receipt and did the finger print checking. Then we came back to the waiting room again.
At around 11:40, one of the four candidates, he was from CUET, was asked to enter the window #9. Within minutes he came back and left the room without talking to anyone. I was scared that he might be refused. Then a BUET guy, Reaz, was called on and he also came back within 2 minutes. As I had some talking with him earlier, he came directly to me with a smiling face and told me that “Diye dilo to”. Just after that, I was asked to get in and I entered window #9. Below is the conversation there:
o Me: Hi Sir, I am ….., May I come in?
o Officer: Yes Sir. What’s your name please?
o Me: I repeated my name.
o Officer: Give me all of your documents. You don’t have to clarify these. Just give everything to me.
o (The officer took a look on my I-20, offer of admission, toefl and gre score)
o Officer: What are you doing right now Sir?
o Me: Working as an executive in ……
o Officer: What do you do there?
o Me: I launch new pharmaceutical products
o Officer: Is the university paying for you.
o Me: Yes Sir.
o Officer: (giving back all my documents) Well, I am approving your visa Sir, welcome to United States. (giving a token to me) Bring this token on 3rd May to get your passport back.
o Me: Thank you Sir, thank you very much.
o I got out with a smiling face.
Getting passport back:
On 3rd may, I entered US embassy at around 12:45, as I was asked to be there at 1:00. There I met Reaz, that BUET guy, and another applicant. We all three were waiting for that moment. Suddenly around 5/6 names were announced in the microphone and were asked to go to window #6 to collect the passport. I was not in the list and became tensed. After minutes, Reaz came back with his passport having US visa. Couple minutes after, 5/6 names were announced again and this time I heard my name there. I entered window #6 and that young Bangladeshi lady, who took our fingerprint on the previous day, was sitting behind the window with a number of passports with her. She gave me my one and asked to check it through. I came back with my passport with the US visa inside. I took a long look at it!! This is it!!! For which I was working for last couple of months. There was no mistake in my passport so I left the embassy showing maximum of my teeth to maximum people around me.