Law Offices of Chris M. Ingram

EB1 Visa- Vinod Krishnan

Tell me about where you are from and a little bit about what you do.

I am originally from India, but have lived in the US for many years now on a student visa and then a work visa. I am a software user experience designer by profession, but also an Indian classical musician by training. I am a singer with over 2 decades of training and performance, focused primarily in South Indian classical (Carnatic) vocal music.

How did you work your way up the ranks to reach your level and what were some of the challenges along the way.

Years of training and practice are definitely the two most vital activities that helped me sharpen my skills as a singer. Having won several contests and scholarships for music in India, once in the US, I collaborated with many performers across the globe, both in person and remotely.

I also made innovative music for the digital world, that got me a large audience in the millions online. Finding opportunities to perform in big venues, prestigious festivals and with world-famous artists is always the challenge – but if you’re smart and build the right contacts, that can make a difference.

Have you ever lived in the US before? If so, under what circumstances? If not, what aroused your interest in a move to the US?

I came to the US as a Masters student and have been working as soon as I graduated.

How did you decide to pursue an EB1?

A friend of mine who received the same approval encouraged me to explore this option. Once I reached out to Ingram’s team (Angie and Gretta), they helped me understand what I had to achieve to meet the criteria for EB1. When they assessed I have a very good chance, that made it worth pursuing it.

What was your experience with the EB1 petition process?

I actually enjoyed it – it was a challenge I loved taking up, but all the more because Gretta was equally responsive and kept the process going. I knew it would take several months to understand the requirements, assemble the documentation, evidence, and even pursue certain opportunities to demonstrate my talent, but to plan and execute all of this has actually been very fulfilling.

What were some of the challenges you had to work on in the preparation of your case, for example evidence gathering?

Biggest challenges were definitely gathering evidence. Sometimes, it took some effort to understand what kind of evidence would be most appropriate to meet a certain criterion. With sufficient examples from Gretta, I was able to work with her to put together a strong case.

What kind of relationship did/do you have Chris and his team?

I worked mostly with Gretta, and like I mentioned in my previous responses, she has been nothing short of a great team player in this journey, guiding me proactively, explaining the processes, the risks, the requirements and many times discussing and dissecting the not so obvious interpretations of the legal language. This helped us put together the most appropriate evidence.

What were you doing when you found out you were approved? What was your immediate reaction? How did/will you celebrate?

I was actually working on some original music, when I received Gretta’s email. I only felt “it’s about time! Good!” because I was very confident I’ll get it. This has been one of those special projects in my life that I’ve studied, planned and executed meticulously. I had a lot of clarity in the strength of my application and confidence that we’ll get a favorable outcome. 

What are you looking forward to most about moving to the US?

I am already here, working, but on a work visa in the IT industry. I look forward to pursuing several opportunities in music where I can make a living as a musician and educator.

What will you miss the most about your home country?

Not too relevant I guess since I visit India almost every year. But I always miss my home town Chennai, its beaches, food and my family and friends.

What advice would you give to any immigrant considering an EB1 or who is already in the process?

Be patient, ask questions, and be very meticulous.