MUMBAI: The US consulate general in the city expects to interview more than 1,000 F1 (academic) visa applicants on May 28—the day it will celebrate Student Visa Day. On this day, the consulate will open its doors exclusively to students applying for visas to the US.

“Student Visa Day applicants will be treated to refreshments in a festive, collegiate atmosphere. Staff from the consulate and the United States-India Educational Foundation will be on hand to answer questions. Experts will also provide tips and information on academics and campus life to ensure students’ success in the United States,” says Melina Gomes of the US consulate, Mumbai.

An overwhelming number of foreign students in the US who are pursuing science, technology, engineering and math are from Asia, with 24% originating from India and China.

Of the total proportion of foreign students in the US, India cements its place as the No. 2 destination after China. While 29% foreign students in the US with F (academic) and M (vocational) visas are from China, 11% come from India, says US immigration and customs enforcement report released in April.

“Nearly 100,000 Indians are pursuing higher studies in the US, enriching our classrooms and campuses and building relationships that will last a lifetime,” said the US consul general in Mumbai Peter Haas.

The US embassy in New Delhi and the consulates in Chennai, Hyderabad, Kolkata and Mumbai issued over 36,000 F1 student visas in the fiscal year that ended September 30, 2013. A record number of F1 visa seekers have applied at US consulates in Mumbai, New Delhi, Kolkata, Chennai and Hyderabad since last October, with student visa issuances up 40% compared with the same period last year.