DV 2021 Oceania Selectees

Melb2021

New Member
I only ever used rough dates for all of my application (employment, addresses, university). I doubt they are going to refuse you because you listed a date off by a few weeks 10 years ago.
Bob22!
Thank you for replying. I feel so honoured to have a well known poster from 2019 here! How is life in the US?

I'm just awaiting my AFP certificates to send off my documents.
 

Aus21

Member
Hi all! I received an email from the KCC last week saying, "Congratulations, your interview is ready to be scheduled!" (Woohoo!)
Who else has received this email, and how long did you have to wait for your interview to be scheduled? My case number is sub-300.
Thanks!
Great to hear! I have received mine 2 weeks ago, not current yet at OC14xx you should receive a 2nl soon seeing you are current.
 

Skidmarksteve

New Member
Hi all

Can someone who is being interviewed in Sydney and has received the email from the Sydney consulate that tells you what documents to bring to the interview paste the email here?

I don’t need to know your name or case number, just want a heads up if they are asking for specific documents not already filed with KCC.

I’m assuming it’s the same email sent to all Australian selectees, but if it differs between the states can a Qld selectee please paste the email they received from the Sydney consulate here?

Thanks
 

Green&Gold

New Member
Hi all

Can someone who is being interviewed in Sydney and has received the email from the Sydney consulate that tells you what documents to bring to the interview paste the email here?

I don’t need to know your name or case number, just want a heads up if they are asking for specific documents not already filed with KCC.

I’m assuming it’s the same email sent to all Australian selectees, but if it differs between the states can a Qld selectee please paste the email they received from the Sydney consulate here?

Thanks
Haven't received the email but you can google it, and find it on the Sydney consulate website.

There is a cover letter you need to bring to the interview.

Why would it be different between NSW and QLD, list of medical providers can be found on the travel.state.gov Sydney consulate section
Cant add a link, as the forumn think its spam.

Screenshot 2021-04-07 211824.png
 

anxious_melb

New Member
Hey! Anxious Melbournian here, case number 12XX wondering if anyone in Australia around my case number has been scheduled for interview or has an estimate / idea of delays at Sydney consulate? I know it only becomes current in May but a bit stressed about the timing which brings me to question 2.
Would it cause me any trouble to mention in the interview that I intend on finishing my degree (masters) once I get there (whilst working part time)? I had already applied and gotten accepted to a university before I had been selected for further processing and deferred to start in the Fall semester this year (why I'm stressed about timing). I've tried looking in to it and didn't see anywhere that it might be a problem however they might think its a financial burden risk specially as I'm already a full time student and only working part time with no real assets to my name?
 

Skidmarksteve

New Member
G
Haven't received the email but you can google it, and find it on the Sydney consulate website.

There is a cover letter you need to bring to the interview.

Why would it be different between NSW and QLD, list of medical providers can be found on the travel.state.gov Sydney consulate section
Cant add a link, as the forumn think its spam.

View attachment 2380
I’ve never seen that document before, including when viewing the Sydney consulate page.

I asked if there was an email as I have seen emails sent from other embassies in Africa where they specifically ask for country specific certificate names for education.

Given that different Australian states over the years have called their High School certificates different names, and there were different formal education pathways for university admission, I was wondering if the Sydney consulate sends different notifications to selectees based on the state they were educated in, as indicated in the selectees’s submitted DS260 and/or ask for specific education certificate names? Or is their approach more subjective and they simply allow the selected to make submissions with evidence that their education qualifies the for a DV.

For example, in Qld if you completed year 12 prior to 2008 you got a Senior Certificate and if you wanted to attend university you got a TE score (prior to 1990) or OP score (prior to 2020).

After 2007 it changed to a Qld Certificate of Education (QCE) with an ATAR number after 2019 (ATAR number is now standard across Australia)

In other states the high school certificate is called other names.

Then there were/are other pathways (in the past at least in Qld) where you could complete 12 years of formal education, not get a senior certificate and TE or OP score, yet have your education assessed by the Qld Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC) and be issued with a QTAC rank number that allows you to apply for university admission.

The US State Department’s Foreign Affairs Manual, which is the ONLY guide a CO will use at your interview to interpret the INA for a DV case clearly states the burden of proof for proving a selectee’s education is equivalent to a US high school education rests with the selectee, and, the equivalent education must allow the selectee to be eligible to apply (not be selected) for college (university) admission.

As my education evidence is the QTAC assessment of my formal 12 years of education with a QTAC rank number that allows me to apply for university admission,
I was just trying to ascertain now (rather than at an interview after paying medical and interview fees) if the Sydney consulate was only accepting specific certificates by name for a Qld education, like a Senior Certificate or QCE with TE, OP or ATAR number, or if they allow the selectee to make submissions with their evidence at the interview.

Work experience can be even more subjective.

What if your employment qualifies you, you have been in a qualifying job for 2 years exactly in the last 5 years, but,
of those 2 years you have not “worked” for part of that time due to being off work sick or in COVID lockdown, yet still been paid your wage (and paid tax) for the period you didn’t work and are still considered a worker. Can that time you missed from work through no fault of your own still be counted as “work experience”? Given you are still on the books with the employer and a worker?

This is suspect will be a common question at the DV2021 interviews given COVID-19 and the “job keeper” arrangements in Australia.

I’d like to hear some past experiences from selectees interviewed in Sydney regarding proving their education and work submissions at the interview.
 

SusieQQQ

Well-Known Member
G

I’ve never seen that document before, including when viewing the Sydney consulate page.

I asked if there was an email as I have seen emails sent from other embassies in Africa where they specifically ask for country specific certificate names for education.

Given that different Australian states over the years have called their High School certificates different names, and there were different formal education pathways for university admission, I was wondering if the Sydney consulate sends different notifications to selectees based on the state they were educated in, as indicated in the selectees’s submitted DS260 and/or ask for specific education certificate names? Or is their approach more subjective and they simply allow the selected to make submissions with evidence that their education qualifies the for a DV.

For example, in Qld if you completed year 12 prior to 2008 you got a Senior Certificate and if you wanted to attend university you got a TE score (prior to 1990) or OP score (prior to 2020).

After 2007 it changed to a Qld Certificate of Education (QCE) with an ATAR number after 2019 (ATAR number is now standard across Australia)

In other states the high school certificate is called other names.

Then there were/are other pathways (in the past at least in Qld) where you could complete 12 years of formal education, not get a senior certificate and TE or OP score, yet have your education assessed by the Qld Tertiary Admissions Centre (QTAC) and be issued with a QTAC rank number that allows you to apply for university admission.

The US State Department’s Foreign Affairs Manual, which is the ONLY guide a CO will use at your interview to interpret the INA for a DV case clearly states the burden of proof for proving a selectee’s education is equivalent to a US high school education rests with the selectee, and, the equivalent education must allow the selectee to be eligible to apply (not be selected) for college (university) admission.

As my education evidence is the QTAC assessment of my formal 12 years of education with a QTAC rank number that allows me to apply for university admission,
I was just trying to ascertain now (rather than at an interview after paying medical and interview fees) if the Sydney consulate was only accepting specific certificates by name for a Qld education, like a Senior Certificate or QCE with TE, OP or ATAR number, or if they allow the selectee to make submissions with their evidence at the interview.

Work experience can be even more subjective.

What if your employment qualifies you, you have been in a qualifying job for 2 years exactly in the last 5 years, but,
of those 2 years you have not “worked” for part of that time due to being off work sick or in COVID lockdown, yet still been paid your wage (and paid tax) for the period you didn’t work and are still considered a worker. Can that time you missed from work through no fault of your own still be counted as “work experience”? Given you are still on the books with the employer and a worker?

This is suspect will be a common question at the DV2021 interviews given COVID-19 and the “job keeper” arrangements in Australia.

I’d like to hear some past experiences from selectees interviewed in Sydney regarding proving their education and work submissions at the interview.
You’re overthinking this, from their perspective - they are not going to work through all the permutations for you. (Apart from anything else, current Australian residents who schooled in other countries also get interviewed in Sydney.) The onus is on you to ensure that the qualifications you bring match the DV requirements, whether education or work.
 

Skidmarksteve

New Member
You’re overthinking this, from their perspective - they are not going to work through all the permutations for you. (Apart from anything else, current Australian residents who schooled in other countries also get interviewed in Sydney.) The onus is on you to ensure that the qualifications you bring match the DV requirements, whether education or work.
and with education, in absence of the Sydney consulate asking for specific named certificates or naming specific accepted certificates on their reciprocity page, Like other embassies do, what evidence will be accepted by the Sydney consulate appears to be subjective.

For example, many (including BritSimon) say vocational degrees will not be accepted.

The FAM however says:

“At least a high school education or its equivalent” in this context applies only to formal courses of study”

“Vocational degrees that are not considered a basis for further academic study will not be considered equivalent to United States high school education”

It could be interpreted by the FAM that a vocational degree that is FORMAL and a FURTHER study WILL be accepted by the CO.

I can’t speak for the rest of the world, but in Australia, at least prior to the mid 1990’s, ALL vocational degrees were offered at TAFE (Technical and FURTHER Education) colleges, ALL TAFE colleges were owned and run by the government, and therefore by name, as the “F” in TAFE stands for further, all TAFE vocational degrees were formal and further academic studies that should be allowed as evidence to prove education requirements in a DV case, as per the FAM.

But the Sydney reciprocity page does not say this, it says, as far as I can see, nothing on education, when other embassies from other countries do, and if all embassies are operating under the same INA I fail to see why some embassies can list the evidence they will accept for education on their reciprocity pages, and others (like Sydney) don’t, as it may help some selectees decide whether to pursue their case.

This is beneficial to ALL selectees, as a selectee who can see through a reciprocity page they simply don’t have the ONLY evidence that will be accepted, would not pursue their case or not even put in an entry for the lottery, which then frees up time for other selectees that do have the required evidence for an interview, especially in a year like this year.

Given that some embassies were/are closed to the public due to COVID-19 perhaps this was/is the time to update their reciprocity pages????
 

SusieQQQ

Well-Known Member
and with education, in absence of the Sydney consulate asking for specific named certificates or naming specific accepted certificates on their reciprocity page, Like other embassies do, what evidence will be accepted by the Sydney consulate appears to be subjective.

For example, many (including BritSimon) say vocational degrees will not be accepted.

The FAM however says:

“At least a high school education or its equivalent” in this context applies only to formal courses of study”

“Vocational degrees that are not considered a basis for further academic study will not be considered equivalent to United States high school education”

It could be interpreted by the FAM that a vocational degree that is FORMAL and a FURTHER study WILL be accepted by the CO.

I can’t speak for the rest of the world, but in Australia, at least prior to the mid 1990’s, ALL vocational degrees were offered at TAFE (Technical and FURTHER Education) colleges, ALL TAFE colleges were owned and run by the government, and therefore by name, as the “F” in TAFE stands for further, all TAFE vocational degrees were formal and further academic studies that should be allowed as evidence to prove education requirements in a DV case, as per the FAM.

But the Sydney reciprocity page does not say this, it says, as far as I can see, nothing on education, when other embassies from other countries do, and if all embassies are operating under the same INA I fail to see why some embassies can list the evidence they will accept for education on their reciprocity pages, and others (like Sydney) don’t, as it may help some selectees decide whether to pursue their case.

This is beneficial to ALL selectees, as a selectee who can see through a reciprocity page they simply don’t have the ONLY evidence that will be accepted, would not pursue their case or not even put in an entry for the lottery, which then frees up time for other selectees that do have the required evidence for an interview, especially in a year like this year.

Given that some embassies were/are closed to the public due to COVID-19 perhaps this was/is the time to update their reciprocity pages????

Yes, in Albania for example I understand there are “vocational” high school diplomas that are acceptable for college entrance and have been accepted for DV. And in some countries it is grade dependent as a university entrance pass requires minimum grades in certain subjects, so it is not just type of qualification. But no, not every embassy lists all the applicable acceptable vs non acceptable education for DV, in fact the ones that do are likely in the minority, I can personally only recall ever seeing one that did so. FAM is clear: a formal course of at least 12 years that qualifies you for US college entrance without having to take any further education to do so. If you are unsure whether or not your qualification works, just look up an arbitrary US college and see what they list as minimum requirements for Australians. For example https://admissions.arizona.edu/how-to-apply/international/country-requirements

(and no, they are not going to waste time listing a zillion different acceptable vs non acceptable options for every country out there over time for the small percentage of immigrants a year who are primary DV applicants when this is something most people can figure out for themselves.)
 

Aus-Usa

New Member
Can we assume the certificate record of achievement for year 12 will sufficient? I have the original document issued from the NSW Gov Educational Standards Authority but it has no reference to grades - just lists name, school, year completed (89) and subjects/units studied and completed. Cant locate the HSC results document!
 

Britsimon

Super Moderator
and with education, in absence of the Sydney consulate asking for specific named certificates or naming specific accepted certificates on their reciprocity page, Like other embassies do, what evidence will be accepted by the Sydney consulate appears to be subjective.

For example, many (including BritSimon) say vocational degrees will not be accepted.

The FAM however says:

“At least a high school education or its equivalent” in this context applies only to formal courses of study”

“Vocational degrees that are not considered a basis for further academic study will not be considered equivalent to United States high school education”

It could be interpreted by the FAM that a vocational degree that is FORMAL and a FURTHER study WILL be accepted by the CO.

I can’t speak for the rest of the world, but in Australia, at least prior to the mid 1990’s, ALL vocational degrees were offered at TAFE (Technical and FURTHER Education) colleges, ALL TAFE colleges were owned and run by the government, and therefore by name, as the “F” in TAFE stands for further, all TAFE vocational degrees were formal and further academic studies that should be allowed as evidence to prove education requirements in a DV case, as per the FAM.

But the Sydney reciprocity page does not say this, it says, as far as I can see, nothing on education, when other embassies from other countries do, and if all embassies are operating under the same INA I fail to see why some embassies can list the evidence they will accept for education on their reciprocity pages, and others (like Sydney) don’t, as it may help some selectees decide whether to pursue their case.

This is beneficial to ALL selectees, as a selectee who can see through a reciprocity page they simply don’t have the ONLY evidence that will be accepted, would not pursue their case or not even put in an entry for the lottery, which then frees up time for other selectees that do have the required evidence for an interview, especially in a year like this year.

Given that some embassies were/are closed to the public due to COVID-19 perhaps this was/is the time to update their reciprocity pages????
I must say, I can't see any way to justify your interpretation. Susie has explained it very well. If a course of study can be used as a generalized education useful for entering an academic university class, then it would be acceptable. However some formal courses of education cannot be used because they do nothing to help with further general education. For example, you could have a formal vocational education as a plumber, but that won't help get into a US college, so it is not counted.

Now, some courses could have more value, and of course not every CO will know the rule precisely or apply it precisely. So the applicant is free to argue their perspective with the CO.
 

Skidmarksteve

New Member
Can we assume the certificate record of achievement for year 12 will sufficient? I have the original document issued from the NSW Gov Educational Standards Authority but it has no reference to grades - just lists name, school, year completed (89) and subjects/units studied and completed. Cant locate the HSC results document!
Again, with a strict reading of the FAM, what you have may NOT be enough.

The FAM says:

...”(2) (U) “At Least a High School Education or its Equivalent” Means SUCCESSFUL Completion of at least a:
(a) (U) Twelve-year course of elementary and secondary study in the United States; OR
(b) (U) Formal course of elementary and secondary education comparable to completion of 12 years of elementary and secondary education in the United States. Because a United States high school education is sufficient in itself to qualify a student to apply for college admission, in order for a foreign education to be equivalent to a United States education, it should be sufficient to allow a student to APPLY FOR COLLEGE ADMISSION without further education.

Vocational degrees that are not considered a basis for further academic study will not be considered equivalent to United States high school education”...

(my emphasis is in upper case)

Did you pass all your high school subjects? As the FAM clearly says only a successful completion of a foreign education will be an equivalent to a US education.

As I also was in high school in the late 80’s, in Qld at least a pass for a subject was called a Sound Achievement.

Again, without knowing the NSW system, assuming NSW had a university entrance score on the high school certificate, if your NSW year 12 certificate has a university entrance score (now called an ATAR all throughout Australia) that allowed you to apply for university admission then according to the FAM your evidence should be enough.

Again, this is why I am asking if anyone has received an email from the Sydney consulate, like what African embassies send out, specifying the exact name of the education certificate/s they will accept.

If your NSW certificate does not contain subject results, I would be contacting the NSW education records authority and/or your former high school ASAP to obtain your result records, and a certified copy of your actual NSW high school certificate, especially if your records are from 1989, as it may take them some time to locate the records. This could be a problem if your interview is soon.

This is what I had to do in Qld, I had the original year 10 junior certificate which they stopped issuing in Qld in 1995 which suggests in Qld since 1995 you cannot leave at year 10, I had my original TAFE certificate which was my year 12, but year 11 results had to be obtained through my old high school, which took A LONG time for the high school to find.

Once I had all my year 8 to 12 results, QTAC issued me a university admission rank number based on my results, which allows me to apply for university admission.

As I have a FORMAL 12 year education that allows me to apply for university admission I’m hoping in accord with the FAM I have met the education requirement otherwise it’s plan B and arguing employment qualifies me, and employment is even more subjective.

Again, would love to hear some Australian experiences from interviews at the Sydney consulate and what education proof was and wasn’t accepted by the CO.
 

Skidmarksteve

New Member
I must say, I can't see any way to justify your interpretation. Susie has explained it very well. If a course of study can be used as a generalized education useful for entering an academic university class, then it would be acceptable. However some formal courses of education cannot be used because they do nothing to help with further general education. For example, you could have a formal vocational education as a plumber, but that won't help get into a US college, so it is not counted.

Now, some courses could have more value, and of course not every CO will know the rule precisely or apply it precisely. So the applicant is free to argue their perspective with the CO.
Simon I would argue the FAM is subject to interpretation.

Secondly, we all can’t be as experienced and knowledgeable as you are now, as I suspect you also lacked the experience you have now prior to your DV journey, this is why we post here, in hopes someone like you can offer your expertise. Remember for many of us this is our first experience with the DV process.

Is it your opinion when the FAM talks of a foreign education being enough to apply for college admission to be considered the equivalent of a US education that the college admission is a “US” college admission?

In other words, my Australian education must allow me to apply for admission to a US college/university to be eligible for a DV?

Or does the FAM mean, for example, my Australian education should allow me to apply for admission to an Australian university to be eligible for a DV?

Secondly, on the basis the FAM means an Australian education should be sufficient to apply for admission to an Australian university, any FORMAL vocational degree would be relevant depending on what university degree the student wished to obtain.

For example, using your example, a vocational degree in plumbing would be useless in applying for university admission to become a doctor.

However the same vocational plumbing degree may be acceptable for university admission for a student wanting to become civil engineer.

I can’t speak for the rest of the world, but in Australia, especially last century, it was quiet common to finish high school after 10 years and proceed into pre apprenticeship academic studies, something the various tertiary admission centres have NOW recognised, which is why they are now assessing education records to ascertain if educational records, including vocational records, entitle an applicant to apply for university admission in Australia.

That’s what I have done and my educational results of 12 continuous years full time have been assessed by the only authority in my state as allowing me to apply for university admission in Australia, and I know of other selectees in this same position.

It appears after results and rank numbers, most Australian universities have a minimum age for admission. Leaving high school after year 10 usually puts you in the 15 years of age bracket, whereas most Australian universities have a minimum age at admission of 17 years of age, so year 10 high school + 2 years of vocational training puts you at an age allowing Australian university admission.

Whether this is sufficient for a DV is, as you correctly said, something that could be argued with a CO, and whilst the advice I have been given by other selectees is the CO is always right and never “argue” with them, it brings me to my original post that if the Sydney consulate was more specific on its reciprocity page, I wouldn’t be asking the questions I’m asking now.

If only a year 12 high school certificate with tertiary entrance score will be accepted by the Sydney consulate and this was published on their reciprocity page, selectees who did not possess the required certificate and couldn’t qualify on employment could either not pursue their case or, as expensive and time consuming yet possible as it is, undertake the required tutorage, sit the required exams, and obtain the required certificate PRIOR to the end of the FISCAL year of selection. May not be possible for DV2021 Selectees, but would be possible in a normal year.
 

Aidyn

Well-Known Member
WOW @Skidmarksteve you really are overthinking all of this - as a DV19 winner from Australia I can tell you all you need is year 12 completion, whatever was issued to you at the time of finishing year 12, regardless of the state you schooled in or the year you completed. That's it, nothing more nothing less!!

Your lengthy replies and deep dives into what may or may not be used by the Sydney consulate shows me that you are adding so much more stress on this process than you really need to be doing. I can tell you that Sydney is one of the most laid back consulates in the world, but that's Australia for you!!

Sit back, relax, take all the good advice from those of us who have gone before you (especially Mom, Susie and Simon) ... I GUARANTEE you will walk away from your interview laughing at how easy it was compared to all the overthinking and worrying you did prior.
 

Aus-Usa

New Member
WOW @Skidmarksteve you really are overthinking all of this - as a DV19 winner from Australia I can tell you all you need is year 12 completion, whatever was issued to you at the time of finishing year 12, regardless of the state you schooled in or the year you completed. That's it, nothing more nothing less!!

Your lengthy replies and deep dives into what may or may not be used by the Sydney consulate shows me that you are adding so much more stress on this process than you really need to be doing. I can tell you that Sydney is one of the most laid back consulates in the world, but that's Australia for you!!

Sit back, relax, take all the good advice from those of us who have gone before you (especially Mom, Susie and Simon) ... I GUARANTEE you will walk away from your interview laughing at how easy it was compared to all the overthinking and worrying you did prior.
Couldn't agree more having experienced myself previously. I recall the extreme stress and anxiety leading up to our Sydney interview (for an E2 visa) and for the majority of the interview seemed like an informal chat on where we planned to live and.where my wife got her ear rings from!
 

Thams3516

New Member
Great to hear! I have received mine 2 weeks ago, not current yet at OC14xx you should receive a 2nl soon seeing you are current.
Hi Aus21,good news you have received your interview confirmation, I'm sub 14xx also but still waiting for confirmation, I did send my DS260 last year and again last Feb and got confirmation its being received by KCC and in process, but still waiting for the good news. Was there anything else you did apart from what I did that would be of great help.
 
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