The University of Michigan is world-renowned as a place of academic excellence. Perhaps it is for this reason that so many of those from other countries holding advanced degrees accept jobs there. However, in order to work in the United States, those with advanced degrees and have “extraordinary abilities” or who are an outstanding professor or researcher will need to obtain a First Preference EB-1 employment-based visa.

Workers with “extraordinary abilities”

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services lays out the criteria for visa eligibility for various classes of workers. The first class is those with “extraordinary abilities.” These are those individuals who have an extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts or other areas whose achievements are extensively recognized in their field.

They must meet three of 10 criteria, such as being members of an association in their field in which outstanding achievements are required or having publications in professional trade publications or major media. As an alternative to the three criteria rule, those who have obtained a one-time achievement such as a Pulitzer may qualify for a visa.

Those who satisfy the extraordinary ability requirements do not need to have a job offer before entering the country.

Outstanding professors and researchers

EB-1 visas can also be obtained by “outstanding professors and researchers.” Under USCIS rules, these are individuals who have international recognition for outstanding achievements and three or more years of experience teaching or researching in their academic field.

They must meet two out of six criteria such as being members of an association that requires outstanding achievement or having evidence of original scientific or scholarly research in their field.

Those who satisfy the outstanding professors and researchers requirement need to have a job offer in the United States and must be pursuing tenure track teaching or a comparable research position at a place of higher education, such as the University of Michigan.

Those who obtain a visa to work at the University of Michigan should feel proud. They are recognized as being talented in their fields of research and once in the country legally they can pursue long-term goals such as naturalization. The assistance of an attorney from a leading Michigan immigration firm can be invaluable in such pursuits.