Career Decision for my wife

New vqMr23
Jun 9 14 Comments

I am on H1B for 3.5 yrs now with my GC not filed.
We want some advice/thoughts for making a career decision for my wife.

She is not very career-oriented.
Her early education was not in English.
In her mind, she thinks this might be a barrier to her success in any career.

But despite the language barrier, it is commendable that she has completed-
4yr- Bachelor's degree in IT Engg
2yr- Diploma in IT Engg
both in English from Mumbai, India.

However, when she comes to the US, both of us have decided that I will educate her (probably a Masters' degree) and she will pursue a career, while she is young so that she can interact with people and integrate with the culture, not lose sanity and her confidence feeling lonely at home and also because it will help her stay happy and engaged.

We have the following questions. Any thoughts/wisdom/experiences/stories will be helpful-

1. Should she study on F1 or H4?

2. What would be good professions/career paths considering weakness in English -
a. considering her background in IT Engg
b. not considering her background in IT Engg

3. What programs/courses does one need to take to be able to pursue them?

4. Job market/success for those profession/career. (How easy it is to land a job)


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TOP 14 Comments
  • Microsoft Dr. Root
    Strongly recommend F1. Always have an independent status whenever possible. Having multiple anchors during an immigration shit storm always helps. As long as your wife can communicate, she'll be fine. Encourage her to watch more English movies/TV shows to reinforce her belief system.
    Jun 9 0
  • Cisco LNzcxerT
    I’ll comment on 1. I’d strongly suggest her to study on F1 and not on H4. My wife started her MS on H4. She also had an EAD. But seeing the uncertainty around H4 EAD, we decided to shift to F1. Also it’s better to get F1 stamped and then enter the country rather than converting to F1 in middle of her course
    Jun 9 3
    • New vqMr23
      Do you think it is absolutely not possible to get F1 stamped after COS from H4? :( I understand the immigrant intent problem. And it will be all the more problematic if my GC process starts. What reasons be safe reasons to get the F1 stamp in the interview after COS.
      Jun 9
    • Cisco LNzcxerT
      It’s obviously possible. My wife converted to F1 in the US. But trust me. I wouldn’t recommend it. It sometimes takes more than a year for your F1 to get approved with COS in the US. You’ll then have to unnecessarily extend your course. Even if it does get approved, it’ll be towards the end of your course. Justifying the conversion to F1 in your visa interview will be challenging. Trust me. Spend a few extra thousand dollars for your wife to fly home and get her F1 stamped prior to starting the course.
      Jun 10
    • New vqMr23

      1. H4 to F1 COS is different from
      2. Flying home to get her F1 stamped?

      I understand you prefer the 2nd.
      But, in the second case what visa would she be on when in the US and married and before the F1? On H4 or B2?
      If it is H4 that she is on, then is it not COS eventually? i.e 2 becomes 1 in that case?
      Jul 8
  • Amazon baleybilli
    She should come on F1, try to pursue masters or at least a certificate program to get accustomed to culture and gain some confidence while learning. There is no better setting than a university to make friends, learn to communicate and get guidance on career. Going to a school in US will make a huge difference in her approach to life in general if she hasn't lived anywhere except India
    Jun 9 0
  • Dude, I feel like these days half of Silicon Valley engineers don’t know basic English grammar.

    I mean, people seriously write English at the 8th grade level.

    Do NOT feel bad about not knowing perfect English. Just practice and buy a grammar book or two. Join Toastmasters to gain confidence!

    Indian women are smart and amazing. She’ll be fine.
    Jun 9 0
  • Cadence


    Intel Corporation
    I will not discourage what other people have said.
    But only benefit on H4 is that you get to pay instate tuition which is significantly less than Out of state on F1.
    Drawbacks on H4 in your scenario without I140, she cant get scholarships or on campus jobs. She cant do internships or get OPT.

    Only thing is that she can try to take 1or 2 semester on H4 with less fees and then convert to F1 for working.
    Jun 9 0
  • Google / Eng

    Google Eng

    Would she be able to get an entry level / contractor eng job right now? The market currently is desperate for any workers, so I'm thinking she could integrate while already making money instead of spending it studying and hitting the job market in 2 years, in a middle of a recession... She already has more education than many US born BScs with good tech jobs.
    Jun 9 0
  • Amazon qlRV03
    1. F1, it's stable and no government will mess with it unlike the H

    2. No one can choose a career for her, she has to find her own passion in life. English should not be a other as it is a learnable skill. The teachers here are pretty good.

    3. Join a reputed university for the full experience of personal and professional development.

    4. This is a research you will have to do yourself.
    Jun 15 0
  • Rally Health FuPayMe$$$
    What's your TC?
    Jun 11 0
  • Dish Network kukujy
    If you convert to F1 from H4,Don’t go to India . My friends wife visa was rejected twice when she visited India . He had to stamp again on H4 and come to US
    Jun 10 0
  • Salesforce guacamoLay
    I think what your wife lacks is confidence. Most of the Chinese and East European engineers speak terrible English. But they are brilliant. We are in an industry where accents are not a problem. Grammar is not a problem. If she can get through a master's degree here she can do good written English which is more than enough. What she needs is solid technical skills and confidence.
    I'd suggest two things
    1) ask her to enroll for toastmasters. That will give her practice in communication
    2) identify an area of study she's fascinated by which pays. Go to a good state school (or the best that she can get accepted to and you can afford) and do a rigorous Masters degree. The rest will follow.
    Also, definitely F1. OPT is awesome.
    Jun 10 0
  • CVS Health zzwJ42
    1. She can enroll on H4 to avail in-state tuition benefits and after first year change to F1 in order to get CPT and post grad OPT.

    2. If she wants to pursuit Masters, choose the subject wisely so that she has chances to get internship and full time job. Data Science, ITM and CS could be some options. Don't stress much on English. As long as she can communicate and write in English, there shouldn't be any problem. She will meet people from different culture and background. It would be a good learning for her.

    3. She has to write GRE and TOEFEL. GRE needs good English vocabulary and proficiency in quant. TOEFEL is easy.

    4. If you are on H1, you know how the market is for people on visa. It may be a struggle to get the job but I've seen a very few people who didn't get the job after MS.

    Good luck 👍
    Jun 9 0