Challenges That International Students Face in US

challenges international students face in US

Located in the third largest continent is the third largest country in the world, and coincidentally, they bear similar names. The United States of America, popularly known as the USA, is located in the heart of North America.

From the ancient shield of Central Canada to the Gulf of Mexico, America is filled with world-class, making it the most popular study-abroad destination for International students.

Despite the country being multicultural, there are still some challenges that international students face in US.

In this article, we will outline some of these challenges and possible solutions.

Why Study in the US?

The United States is the most popular study-abroad destination for international students. Aside from being the world’s power, the US is a developed country with top-class infrastructure.

Here are some reasons why you should study in the US;

1. Excellent international reputation

The US has the best-ranked education institutions in the world. Aside from how well-funded and supported American universities are, they instill academic excellence and discipline in their students.

2. Cultural diversity

The US is a big pot of different cultures. Its multicultural environment ensures acceptance of all cultures and tribes, giving no room for discrimination. 

Studying in this multicultural environment will help you build strong personality traits and skills that will be valuable in the international market. 

3. Excellent support facilities

US institutions offer plenty of support to international students to help make their transition to a new environment easy. They have put together various workshops, English-language practice courses, orientations, and trainings to help International students prepare for their classes.

4. Flexible education system

United States universities and colleges offer various courses and programs for students. Students are free to select their course, course content, and course structure.

5. Vibrant campus life

United States university campuses are always bursting with fun and excitement. International students should open their minds to embrace new ideas and new people.

How to Apply to United States Universities

The US educational system is designed to provide students with the opportunity to work while studying. To get into any US University, you have to either apply directly to the school or through an educational agent.

For schools where you have to apply through an Educational agent, be sure to check their website for a list of recognized educational agents. The educational system allows you to pick in what semester you would like to start your studies.

Here is a step-by-step process on How To Apply To a US University;

Explore Different Study Options

The first step in your application process is exploring the various study options available in the United States. Every University has several unique study options for their students.

Perform proper research on your course of study, the US university that offers it, and the study options provided by the university.

Pick Your Choice University

The second step is picking a US University. In picking a US University, you should take the following into consideration;

  • Availability of your course of study.
  • Cost of Application fees.
  • Cost of Tuition fees.
  • Location of the University and the cost of living in that location.
  • Admission Requirements.

The University of your choice should meet both your career and financial goals.

Apply to the University

The next step is filling out the application form from the university. You can either apply directly to the school or through educational agents.

Educational agents are people who have been approved by the school to help students during their application process. These educational agents are aware of changes in the school’s admission requirements.

During your application, you might have to provide the following documents depending on your type of study;

  • Secondary School/Diploma certificates
  • IELTS or its equivalent.
  • Undergraduate certificate
  • Statement of Intention
  • CV/Resume

Apply For a United States Study Visa

This is the last step in your application process. Once you have been accepted into a United States university, you must apply for a study visa for the duration of your study. This visa allows you to work while you study.

You will be required to provide the following documents during your visa application process;

  • Confirmation of enrollment from your US institution.
  • Genuine Temporary Entrant Requirement
  • Proof of Health Insurance (OHSC)
  • Proof of Sufficient Funding
  • IELTS or its Equivalent.

Challenges That International Students Face in US| Overview

Despite the US being a favorite study destination, there are several challenges that International students face in US.

Here are some challenges international students face in US;

Language Barrier

Language difference is one of the major challenges international students face in US. The US is an English-speaking country, making it difficult for students from non-English-speaking countries to interact with their lecturers and peers.


The United States education system has made provisions for English courses for international students to learn the language.

Cultural Divide

The difference in cultural norms, beliefs, languages, behaviors, etc., is a major challenge international students face in US. International students might find it difficult to adapt to the differences in culture.


International students should open themselves to the experience. They should embrace the culture and put in the effort to learn more about it. They can also join cultural clubs, participate in orientation programs, and be actively involved in the local communities to gain a better understanding of the culture.

Difference in Education System

The rigorous educational system, fast-paced learning system, and different grading systems are part of the challenges international students face in US.

The United States educational system is highly competitive, and it requires students to perform excellently well.


To help international students blend in easily, United States universities have put in place a support system. Students who are facing difficulty can contact the support office for guidance.

Students can also reach out to their lecturers and peers for help.

Financial Challenges

The cost of tuition fees, accommodation, feeding, and other living expenses form part of the financial challenges international students face in US. The United States is more expensive than other study destinations, and without proper planning, international students might find it difficult to survive.


To solve this issue, students should look for shared accommodations to cut down on the cost of accommodation. Students can apply for jobs to help take care of their daily expenses. They can also apply for scholarships and grants.

Students can also take advantage of the students’ discount on transportation and entertainment.

Work-Life Balance

The pressure of doing well academically while maintaining a part-time job and a healthy social life is one of the major challenges international students face in US.


Students should create a well-working work-life balance by giving themselves realistic goals and creating a schedule to meet these goals.

They can seek the help of their tutors and peers when they get overwhelmed with activities.

Discrimination and Racism

Despite the US being a multicultural society, discrimination and racism are top of the list of challenges faced by international students.


Students should read about their rights in the country and report any incident of racism to the right authorities without delay.

Study Visa Issues

Visa expiration and change of educational institution are challenges international students face in US. Students with the subclass 500 Visa should adhere strictly to the rules guiding their entry requirements.


Students with the Study visa are not allowed to renew their visas. They are advised to apply for a new visa three months before the expiration of the former visa.

Scholarships Available for International Students

The huge cost of living and tuition fees are the major challenges international students face in US. To help ease the burdens of these students, the government has made available different scholarship programs.

Here are some US scholarship programs for International students;

Marian University International Scholarships in USA

Scholarship opportunities are available for international applicants studying at Marian University, USA.

These Marian University International Scholarships and Financial Aid are made available for international undergraduate students who wish to enroll in a program of study at the university for the referenced academic session.

At Marian University, the institution awards nearly $24 million annually in grants and scholarships.

Visit the Official Website for Further Details

Dell Scholars Program, Fully Funded Scholarships at University of Texas, USA

The Dell Scholars Program Michael & Susan Dell Foundation. It targets international students for financial assistance towards their educational pursuits at the University of Texas in the USA.

The program is highly competitive and applicable to undergraduate students who wish to enroll in a degree program at the University.

Visit the Official Website for Further Details

$10,000 Wyzant College Scholarships | USA

Wyzant  Inc. has announced the Wyzant College Scholarship Contest. The Contest is open to only current legal US residents 16 years old and above willing to enroll to attend a two-year or four-year college or university.

Wyzant Inc. is responsible for providing $15,000 as the amount to be awarded. The person who comes first will get up to $10,000, the one who comes second will get up to $3,000, and the third-place winner will get $2,000. This is a voluminous amount for a scholarship.

Factors Pulling International Students to the US

The US is a popular study destination for international students. The United States is a perfect combination of culture and technology, providing international students with a perfect study destination during school sessions and a beautiful travel destination during the holidays.

Here are some reasons why the US has become a popular choice among international students;

Quality of Education

The US education system is not only dedicated to dispensing knowledge to students but also providing them with practical experiences to help them excel in their chosen careers.

The United States is home to 10 of the top 25 universities in the world. This goes to say without doubt that the quality of education is world-class.

Global Recognition

Degrees and qualifications obtained from any United States university are recognized globally. Students who complete their studies in a United States university are highly sought after by employers globally.

Multicultural Environment

The United States is home to people from different cultural backgrounds, creating a multicultural environment. Students get to learn about other cultures; this goes a long way in fostering love and unity.

Work Experience

International students are allowed to work and study at the same time in the US. This provides students with the opportunity to gain valuable experience while schooling.

Beautiful Landscape

The United States has a beautiful landscape that attracts tourists year in and year out. International students have access to explore its beautiful landscape in their leisure time.

Outdoor Lifestyle

There are so many outdoor activities you could do in the United States. There is never a boring moment in the United States.


From the majestic Gulf of Mexico to the beautiful infrastructure, the United States is a great choice for international studies. The country gives you access to a great study destination alongside a beautiful travel destination for vacation.

Despite all the benefits students stand to gain, there are some challenges international students face in US that hinder them from getting the best from their study experience.


Is It Hard for International Students in US?

Studying in the US as an International student can be overwhelming. It takes about two months for the culture shock to set in. Keeping yourself organized, take things easy, and take advantage of student resources wherever you can

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