Foreign student, Tong, first to get visa

By Aria Plants

Chinese foreign exchange student Tong Lin is not the first to acquire a visa from Montoursville Area High School; however she is the first to get a certain type of visa.

A visa is an endorsement on a passport indicating that the holder is allowed to enter, leave or stay for a specified period of time in a country. Junior Tong Lin came to Montoursville from China to expand her horizons and learn different cultures.

Lin originally came here on her J1 visa, which was very difficult to receive.

Lin first had to go to the American Locating Embassy, and the people there asked her multiple questions about things like her family and life at home in China. However, that is just the ordinary visa one must get to travel to another country for a long period of time, for example, a school year.

Lin currently is staying with the McNamara’s for the remainder of this school year. Lin has been staying with the McNamara’s and really is enjoying her stay there.

Where Lin goes off the path of regular foreign exchange student though, is that she is staying in the country for another year, to finish out her senior year in America.

She cannot wait to go home to her family in China though; she misses them very much, as anyone would expect.

Lin will be staying with art teacher Victoria Stetts, who Lin said is “very nice” and she looks forward to the stay with her and her family.

Lin must apply for a F1 visa, which allows her to become an international student rather than an exchange student.

Lin said, “It’s not fair, getting visa’s are much easier for Americans than Chinese.”

Sadly though, J1 visas are easier to get than F1 visas, so Lin has her work cut out for her when she goes home.

Lin would like to continue her studies in the United States and receive a higher education by attending college. One school she is considering is Penn State University. Lin also would maybe, she stressed maybe, would like to major in international business.

Even though Lin really misses her home country, she sees the opportunities that she could possibly reap in the United States.