Sunday, August 27, 2023
Getting published can help your immigration status. Advice to visa-seekers.
Kathryn Atkins for The National Business Post
April 19, 2021
The American dream.
For many people in other parts of the world, our way of life in the United States is the inspiration that drives them from the time they first start school until they make it to a U.S. college for an undergraduate or post-graduate degree. After succeeding there, they are even more determined to work and live here on a more permanent basis. To obtain legal status from the U.S. government, immigrant workers must go through a complex visa application and approval process. It is not easy, and some folks give up partway through as there are more than 20 temporary and five permanent worker visa classifications overseen by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
One of the more difficult work visas to obtain is the EB-1A visa. The USCIS reserves the EB-1A visa for those who prove extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics. Applicants must prove that they will continue to work in their field and demonstrate that their work will substantially benefit the United States. Further, they must show that they possess “achievements that have been recognized in their field of expertise.”
Extraordinary ability can be proved either by realizing a one-time accomplishment at the caliber of a Nobel prize or an Olympic medal or by fulfilling specific USCIS criteria that demonstrate an individual’s expertise and renown in their industry. One of these requirements is to show published scholarly articles in major trade publications or professional journals or to highlight widely disseminated materials about the individual in other reputable media. Only 3,854 First Preference EB-1A visas were issued in 2018 and 2,223 in 2019. In 2020, the approval numbers dropped significantly to 1,280, likely in part due to the present global pandemic situation with COVID-19.
This multifaceted process to obtain an Employment-Based Immigration, First Preference EB-1A (or EB1-A or EB1-EA) visa requires the professional expertise, legal guidance, and often the assistance of specialized resources.
(L to R): TRADE PRESS SERVICES CEO Gerri Knilans and her team
Trade Press Services (TPS)
Since 1995, Gerri Knilans, and her team at Trade Press Services, have provided article writing services and arranged for the publication of clients’ content into well-respected industry-specific magazines. “In the last 26 years, we’ve written thousands of articles appearing in more than 800 publications for businesses and individuals. We have a 100-percent success rate and make it easy for the editors to fill their pages with compelling content and for our clients to get the content published,” Knilans notes.
EB-IA applicants seek out Trade Press Services on the advice of their immigration attorneys. These immigrant applicants, who include IT experts, business leaders, medical doctors, and Ph.Ds., are brilliant, but English is not their first language. American English is an even further reach. Neither the attorneys nor the visa candidates have easy access to the trade journals or media outlets’ editors and publishers. And they don’t know how to approach them about becoming a contributing author. “It’s a profession unto itself,” Knilans adds.
There can also be a lack of understanding of what constitutes a “quality” article: it must be newsworthy, provide value to the reader, and expand their thinking in a new way with solutions-based information. It’s often tempting to publish something that says, “Here’s what I did.” It is a far better contribution and more appealing to publication readers to learn, “Here’s what you may not know and why it’s important.”
In 2020, Trade Press Services helped more than 25 EB-1A applicants get published in reputable print and digital media outlets. Knilans says, “Our success comes from understanding the publishing world and developing a proprietary process that makes sense to editors and the subject matter experts we help. We are dedicated and committed to getting clients the visibility, credibility, and name recognition they seek through published articles. We love what we do, and expanding from businesses to individuals in the EB-1A space is a niche that perfectly matches our company’s vision and mission.”
One of Trade Press Services’ recent EB-1A clients, cybersecurity expert FNU (Divi) Divyanka, said, “I wasn’t sure where to begin, what topic to choose, and what magazines and journals to contact. Trade Press Services helped me with that part and captured my industry knowledge and converted it into easily digestible articles the magazines loved.”
Divi is still gathering the many other documents necessary for completing the application, but her advice to people in similar situations is, “Do not give up! Every minute of all this hard work and not losing hope will pave a path for better opportunities for you and your family.”
The individuals in the EB-1A applicant pool are genuinely at the top of their fields, and the contributions they make will substantially benefit the United States. It is when high-caliber, best-in-class applicants finally obtain an EB-1A visa that they win. And it is a win for the United States.
Former Secretary of State Madeleine Albright, Elon Musk, author Isabel Allende, former PepsiCo CEO Indra Nooyi, Google co-founder Sergey Brin, and thousands of others are foreign-born. “We are a nation of immigrants,” says Knilans. “Helping today’s immigrants obtain their EB-1A visas has been one of my greatest joys. Seeing their unshakable desire to work and live in our country reminds me of how lucky we are to be born here and living the American Dream.”
Copyright © 2021. The National Business Post. All rights reserved.
Kathryn Atkins
Kathryn Atkins is a freelance business writer and published author working out of Southern California. A recent graduate of Seth Godin’s altMBA, she also has an MBA from UC Berkeley, plays the piano, dances flamenco, does yoga, and loves to read. She can be reached at Her other works can be found through these online outlets: Amazon | LinkedIn | Website | Blog | YouTube