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Cablegate: Mandatory Swt Report Shows 98.7 Percent Return Rate

VZCZCXRO1194
RR RUEHRG
DE RUEHSO #0324 1751148
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
R 231148Z JUN 08 ZDK
FM AMCONSUL SAO PAULO
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC 8337
RUEHBR/AMEMBASSY BRASILIA 9473
RUEHRI/AMCONSUL RIO DE JANEIRO 8767
RUEHRG/AMCONSUL RECIFE 4146
RUEHBU/AMEMBASSY BUENOS AIRES 3192
RUEHAC/AMEMBASSY ASUNCION 3440
RUEHMN/AMEMBASSY MONTEVIDEO 2734
RUEHCV/AMEMBASSY CARACAS 0763
RUEHSG/AMEMBASSY SANTIAGO 2440
RUEHLP/AMEMBASSY LA PAZ 3851

UNCLAS SAO PAULO 000324

SIPDIS

STATE FOR CA/P, CA/VO/F/P, ECA/EC/PS, ECA/EC/CU, WHA/BSC

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: CVIS KFRD OEXC ELAB SMIG BR
SUBJECT: Mandatory SWT Report Shows 98.7 Percent Return Rate

1. (U) SUMMARY. Results of a mandatory end-of-season report from
Brazilian Summer Work Travel (SWT) agencies show that 98.7 percent
of participants had returned to Brazil or changed visa status
legally in the U.S. by the end of the program. 1.2 percent of
students overstayed their visa status, most by one or two weeks
only. In addition, agencies accepted applications from only
two-thirds of all interested students. End Summary.

-------------------------------------------
Mandatory Report Holds Agencies Accountable
-------------------------------------------

2. (U) Last year Congen Sao Paulo required SWT agencies who wished
their students to apply for visas on the twelve days reserved for
exchange students to provide us with an end-of-season report showing
their students return rates. In addition, agencies had to provide
their internal approval rate, or how many applicants they accepted
from all interested students. They also had to determine how many
students changed visa status after finishing their program.
Brazil's SWT participation dates were November 15 to March 15. This
report was due on April 30, as all students should have returned to
Brazil by April 15.

3. (U) Thirty-two agencies submitted reports, which included
information on students who applied not only in Sao Paulo, but
throughout Mission Brazil. The reports show that the agencies
approved 9,607 (66.3%) of the 14,489 students who applied. Of
these, posts approved 8,991 (93.5%) for visas. NOTE: This number
does not include all SWT applicants in Mission Brazil, as some
agencies did not send applicants to Sao Paulo and did not have to
file a report. End note.

--------------------------------------------
Majority of Students Maintained Legal Status
--------------------------------------------

4. (U) The agencies reported on the status of 8,608 of the 8,991
students approved for visas, a 95.7 percent reporting rate. 8069,
or 93.7 percent, of these students returned to Brazil by April 15.
432 students, or 5 percent, adjusted status in the U.S. following
their program, most to B2 (tourist) or F1 (student) status. An
additional 107 students, or 1.2 percent, remained in the U.S. longer
than their visa permitted. Most of these students remained only one
or two weeks longer than permitted.

5. (U) COMMENT. Congen Sao Paulo believes that this report is an
effective way to increase agencies' accountability for their
applicants. Student Travel Bureau, the second largest exchange
agency in Brazil, decided it will use this information and reject
future applications from students who overstayed their previous J-1
visa. In addition, the low overstay rate shows that both the SWT
agencies and Congen Sao Paulo are accurately screening participants
in this program. END COMMENT.

# STORY

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