DACA – Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals – DREAMERS
In September 2012, U.S. Immigration started deferring action for certain childhood arrivals and issuing employment authorization for a period of two years. Beginning in September 2014, the initial two-year grants of deferred action for early recipients of DACA are due to expire under their own terms, and the renewal process will allow eligible individuals to request and receive an extension of their deferred action without experiencing any lapse in their lawful presence or work authorization.
You should submit your DACA renewal request about 120 days (4 months) before your current period of deferred action will expire. If you submit your request more than 150 days (5 months) before your current period expires, Immigration may reject it and return it to you with instructions to resubmit it closer to the expiration date.
DACA applications may be submitted if you:
- Were under the age of 31 as of June 15, 2012;
- Came to the United States before reaching your 16th birthday;
- Have continuously resided in the United States since June 15, 2007, up to the present time;
- Were physically present in the United States on June 15, 2012, and at the time of making your request for consideration of deferred action with USCIS;
- Had no lawful status on June 15, 2012;
- Are currently in school, have graduated or obtained a certificate of completion from high school, have obtained a general education development (GED) certificate, or are an honorably discharged veteran of the Coast Guard or Armed Forces of the United States; and
- Have not been convicted of a felony, significant misdemeanor,or three or more other misdemeanors, and do not otherwise pose a threat to national security or public safety.
The F-1 Visa (student visas) allows you to enter the United States as a full-time student at an accredited college, university, seminary, conservatory, academic high school, elementary school, or other academic institution or in a language training program. You must be enrolled in a program or course of study that culminates in a degree, diploma, or certificate and your school must be authorized by the U.S. government to accept international students. F-1 students may not work off-campus during the first academic year, but may accept on-campus employment subject to certain conditions and restrictions.
The J-1 classification (exchange visitors) is authorized for those who intend to participate in an approved program for the purpose of teaching, instructing or lecturing, studying, observing, conducting research, consulting, demonstrating special skills, receiving training, or to receive graduate medical education or training.
In carrying out the responsibilities of the Exchange Visitor Program, the Department of State designates public and private entities to act as exchange sponsors. J-1 nonimmigrants are therefore sponsored by an exchange program that is designated as such by the U.S. Department of State. These programs are designed to promote the interchange or persons, knowledge, and skills, in the fields of education, arts, and science.
The M-1 visa (vocational student) category includes students in vocational or other nonacademic programs, other than language training.