USCIS Enhances O-1 Guidance with STEM Focus

As of July 22, 2022, U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) has updated its Policy Manual, offering additional guidance on evidence applicable to O-1A nonimmigrant petitions for individuals with extraordinary ability, specifically emphasizing science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields.

The clarification from USCIS highlights that inclusion in a competitive government grant for STEM research serves as a favorable indicator of the beneficiary's prominence in their field. This evidence is now explicitly mentioned among the examples that can be submitted to demonstrate extraordinary ability in STEM fields, and the complete list is accessible in the USCIS Policy Manual.

O-1 nonimmigrant status is designated for individuals with exceptional abilities in sciences, arts, business, education, and athletics, as well as those with a notable record of achievement in the motion picture or television industry. This update reflects USCIS's commitment to refining guidance and acknowledging specific achievements within the STEM domains for O-1 petitions.

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