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I am in a similar situation to the many previous questions on this topic, except that I am studying remotely for a college based in the US, and not working. The school is an accredited, degree-granting school and I am studying for credit towards a degree. I am planning to visit my school for 1-2 months to hang out with classmates, meet the teachers, etc., while still studying "remotely" for my classes. My degree does not require me to be physically on campus at any point, this is just for my own networking benefit. My school has confirmed they will not sponsor F1 visas. Can I enter the US on a B2 visa? The B1 visa for working digital nomads doesn't apply to me because I am not "meeting business associates".

Before anyone asks, yes, this is a legitimate school and not a diploma mill. I wish to remain anonymous so I will not reveal what school it is but it is a famous school. I have an official .edu email, id card, etc. from the school so it is not a scam.

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Because the programme doesn't require presence at campus at any point, you don't need an F-1 visa, but can enter on a B visa (or visa-free if a VWP national)

However, it is highly likely CBP (border control) officers won't get this nuance, so I highly recommend you to:

  1. Get a signed/stamped letter from the school explaining your exact situation, particularly that presence at campus is at no point required.

  2. Then e-mail the CBP management: send a message to mark.a.morgan@cbp.dhs.gov, robert.e.perez@cbp.dhs.gov, edward.e.young@cbp.dhs.gov and todd.c.owen@cbp.dhs.gov. Start the message with "Please forward to the competent department". Upload the letter from the school, and explain that you're optionally entering for the purpose of meeting peers/teachers. Ask them to confirm that, barring unrelated complications, the CBP will admit you to the US on a B visa or under the VWP under these circumstances.

Presumably you'll get a confirmation that you're allowed to enter on a B visa or under the VWP. Print that confirmation and present it at the embassy and/or the border if need be.

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    I'm not sure sending an email to upper management of the entire CBP is really going to be helpful. – CGCampbell Feb 20 at 18:10
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    @CGCampbell The one time I did, they forwarded it to someone genuinely competent, whereby I got the answer I was looking for. But YMMV perhaps – Crazydre Feb 20 at 18:11

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