Will an outstanding student be able to get legal residency? 5 Answers as of December 15, 2010

I am an International Student holding an F-1 Visa and I would like to know if there is any ways to obtain residency due to my outstanding academic achievements. I am pursuing an AA degree in Mass Communications in a Community College and will transfer to a four-year institution to obtain a Bachelors in Marketing and Public Relations. My GPA is 3.90, I have a great resume and clean background. Regarding my potential, is there any options for my to obtain residency without getting married or waiting for a job after I graduate? Thanks in advance for your answer.

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Pacifica Legal Services
Pacifica Legal Services | Floyd Fernandez
The short answer to your question is probably not. The best and straight course is to maintain your F-1 visa, continue to pursue your studies, work toward graduation, obtain initial employment via an approved Occupational Practical Training work permit, which, depending on the employer and the type of degree you are obtaining, will be allowed to work for up to 12-29 months after your studies are completed. Your type of degree, marketing will likely be of the 12 month variety, but during that time it will enable you to get a sponsoring employer for various employer-sponsored visas, both temporary and permanent. If you have other questions, by all means e-mail to me.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 12/15/2010
Law Office of Immigration & International Trade Law
Law Office of Immigration & International Trade Law | Linda Liang

You can consider EB-1 immigration, for which you must be able to demonstrate extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics through sustained national or international acclaim. Your achievements must be recognized in your field through extensive documentation. No offer of employment is required.

You can contact me for further qualification and assistance.

Thank you and good luck!
Answer Applies to: Florida
Replied: 11/23/2010
Marie Michaud Attorney At Law
Marie Michaud Attorney At Law | Marie Michaud
Congratulation for your outstanding grades. However, you can not get a green card by being an outstanding student. In a nutshell, there are two main ways to obtain legal residency: through an employer or through a family relationship. (Others less common way include asylum, victim of crime)
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/19/2010
Law Offices of Svetlana Boukhny
Law Offices of Svetlana Boukhny | Svetlana Boukhny
NO, if you are only obtaining an AA degree, you are nowhere near being qualified to get permanent residence. Typically, to be eligible, one has to have completed a PhD program and then some and have many publications in peer review journals, high quality letters of recommendation from experts in the field, participation in conferences, on panels, etc. In other words, it is possible EVENTUALLY if you follow that path but it will be many many years before that could potentially even make you eligible to apply on your own, without any job offer.
Answer Applies to: California
Replied: 11/18/2010
Law Office of Michael E. Hendrickson
Law Office of Michael E. Hendrickson | Michael E. Hendrickson
No, lawful permanent residency requires either a spouse or close family member who is already at least a green cardholder or a U.S. employer willing to provide you with a job to sponsor your application. Outstanding academic achievement on the part of the applicant is not a recognized basis by USCIS for awarding lawful permanent residency.
Answer Applies to: Virginia
Replied: 11/18/2010
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