National Interest Waiver Sample Recommendation Testimonial Letters

Please keep the following in mind when having testimonial letters written for National Interest Waiver cases:

Three factors must be proved when filing a request for a national interest waiver:

It must be shown that the alien proposed endeavor has both substantial merit and national importance;

It must be shown that the alien is well positioned to advance the proposed endeavor;

It must be shown that on balance, it would be beneficial to the United States to waive the job offer and labor certification requirements.

In addition to discussing the three criteria in national interest waiver cases, the AAO made the following observations:

The petitioner’s subjective assurance that the alien will, in the future, serve the national interest is not sufficient to establish prospective national benefit.

While the national interest waiver hinges on prospective national benefit, it clearly must be established that the alien’s past record justifies projections of future benefit to the national interest.

Simply establishing a certain level of training or education is not sufficient to establish prospective national benefit.

Arguments regarding the importance of a given field of endeavor, or the urgency of an issue facing the United States, cannot by themselves establish national interest. The mere fact that the alien is engaging in this field or seeking an as-yet undiscovered solution to the issue is not enough.

The shortage of qualified workers in a given field, regardless of the nature of the occupation, does not constitute grounds for a national interest waiver.

National Interest Waiver Sample Recommendation Letter #1

Re: Application for National Interest Waiver for Dr. Smith

Dear USCIS Officer,

This letter is written in support of Dr. Smith’s candidacy for “National Interest Waiver” to obtain permanent residency in the USA.

(Part 1: What are the author’s qualifications and how the author knows the alien’s work) I am a Professor of Nuclear Engineering at Massachusetts of Institute of Technology and have been a member of the faculty for over twenty-five years.  I am pleased to state that Dr. Smith has completed his doctoral dissertation under my supervision. I have been professionally involved in many research projects in the area of nuclear power plant operations. Thus, I am thoroughly acquainted with his research work and other worldwide research activities in this area.

(Part 2: Description, economic significance, and contribution of the alien’s work) Dr. Smith has conducted a research project “Operational Availability Improvement through Monitoring and Advice”. This project relates to the development of on-line monitoring and diagnosis for improved nuclear power plant operational availability. It was sponsored by the Korean Electric Power Corporation in support of development of the Korean Next Generation Reactor. His main accomplishments include the following:

Smith has identified the power plant components most responsible for lost operational availability of the nuclear power plants in the USA [sources: M.W. Golay, C.W. Sample, “On-Line Monitoring for Improved Nuclear Power Plant Availability and Operating Advice – Active Equipment Monitoring: Rotating Machinery,” MIT Technical Report, No. MIT-ANP-TR-057, Vol. I, February 1998]. Here, Dr. Smith provided invaluable information on the lost availability contribution ranking of U.S. Nuclear Power Plant Systems (1990-1995), which lists key power plant machines to be focused in future activities of nuclear engineering-related academia and industry.

He developed a new method termed “Integrated Method” for development of a comprehensive modern sensor network for such complex power plant systems [source: C.W. Smith, M.W. Golay, “An Integrated Method for Comprehensive Sensor Network Development in Complex Power Plant Systems,” accepted for publication in the Journal of Reliability Engineering and System Safety, 1999]. This integrated method has been judged to be superior to conventional existing methods in terms of decomposing the complexity of a complex target system for determination of condition monitoring parameters, adopting advanced instrumentation techniques to extend diagnostic coverage of the monitoring system, and systemizing a sequence of required tasks contributing to finalization of sensor network development. The use of this new method will facilitate the development of sensor network at the design stage of the nuclear power plants. This accomplishment is very promising in that his new method can be applied to design of monitoring systems in other types of power plants and modern manufacturing systems.

Specifically, he recommended state-of-the-art on-line condition monitoring techniques for critical rotating machines [sources: C.W. Smith, M.W. Golay, “Incorporation of Modern On-Line Spectral Condition Monitoring for Operational Availability Improvement of Reactor Coolant Pumps,” submitted to the Proceedings of the Institution of Mechanical Engineers, Part E, Journal of Process Mechanical Engineering, 1999]. The state-of-the-art spectral condition monitoring techniques envisioned in his research ensure that all operational decisions are made based upon corroborated diagnostic information, thereby eventually leading to significant financial gains.

He developed a Bayesian Belief Network-based advisory system for operational availability focused diagnosis of complex power plant systems [source: C.W. Smith, M.W. Golay, “A Bayesian Belief Network-Based Advisory System for Operational Availability Focused Diagnosis of Complex Nuclear Power Systems,” Vol. 17, No.1, pp.21-32, International Journal of Expert Systems with Applications, 1999]. The Bayesian belief network-based advisory system is superior to existing advisory systems in terms of complexity management, inference mechanism, uncertainty management, systematic decision making, knowledge representation and model refinement. Because most existing monitoring systems in the nuclear power plants have been designed mainly for safety concern, both probabilistic and deterministic operational advice provided from the Bayesian belief network-based advisory system can promote more sophisticated operation of the nuclear power plant.

In summary, Dr. Smith provided a valuable methodological tool, recommended a set of valuable new monitoring techniques, and formulated a new type of advisory system for the intelligent diagnosis and maintenance for nuclear industry. The fact that the financial loss caused by one day forced outage amounts to about $0.7 million for a 1300MW nuclear power plant explains how much a sequence of his work would substantially benefit the U.S. economy through significant savings in energy and resources.

He has been the primary worker in this research project.  I observed that his contribution was virtually indispensable for the success of the project.  I presented his research findings on our behalf at a conference [source: C.W. Sample, J.B. Lee, Y. Sui, M.W. Golay, “An Advisory Bayesian Belief Network-Based Expert System for On-Line Component Monitoring,” International Conference on Probabilistic Safety Assessment and Management, New York, September 13-18, 1998]. His research was applied to another rotating component, emergency diesel generator by researchers in Korea Electricity Power Research Institute [sources: J.B. Lee, H.G. Kim, B.S. Kim, M.W. Golay, C.W. Smith, Y. Sui, “Operational Availability Improvement through On-Line Monitoring and Advice for Emergency Diesel Generators,” Proceedings of the Korean Nuclear Society Spring Meeting, Seoul, Korea, May 1998]. In the near future, we expect that a set of ultimately determined sensors and diagnostic advisory system will be implemented in the Korean Next Generation Reactor.

It is fair to say that Dr. Smith has received international recognition, and his expertise is extremely needed for development of nuclear power plant monitoring and diagnostic systems at a high level. I feel it would be of great benefit to the United States and to nuclear science and engineering in general if Dr. Smith were given to the opportunity to continue his career in the United States. In closing, I strongly support the “National Interest Waiver” application of Dr. Smith to obtain permanent residency in the USA. If you have any questions, please feel free to call me at (515) 111- 1234.


James W. Johnson

Professor of Nuclear Engineering

Massachusetts Institute of Technology

National Interest Waiver Sample Recommendation Letter #2

Re:  Dr. Smith’s application for National Interest Waiver

Dear USCIS Officer,

I am writing this letter in support of Dr. Smith’s candidacy for “National Interest Waiver” to attain permanent resident status in the United States.  Dr. Smith’s educational background and professional interests would be a valuable asset to many industries in their effort to diagnose critical system component failures and subsequently to improve the productivity of complex systems and processes.

I have a doctorate degree from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.  For two years, I worked for TRW Environmental Safety Systems in support of its endeavor to create a safe and reliable management system for the nation’s high-level nuclear waste.  Since I left TRW Environmental Safety Systems, I have been working for the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office as a patent examiner in the area of mechanical/chemical apparatus and processes utilized in oil and gas industry.  I first met Dr. Smith while I was at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and ever since maintained personal contact with him throughout his stay in the United States.  I am familiar with his research and professional interests through our discussions as colleagues at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology as well as frequent personal conversations afterward.

Dr. Smith’s innovative approach in diagnosing complex systems and processes has far-reaching implications in various technical fields.  Any technical discipline relying on complex inter-workings of machines and processes can benefit from Dr. Smith’s research.  Dr. Smith’s proposed framework of improving reliability of nuclear power plants could be readily adapted by any industry striving to improve economic productivity.  For example, Dr. Smith’s “Integrated Method” could greatly improve the reliability of proposed nuclear waste storage facility through proper sensor networks monitoring the facility’s critical design parameters and providing continuous diagnostic information which would help avoid undesired operating conditions.  An improved monitoring and diagnostic system could reduce the operating expense of the proposed nuclear storage facility currently estimated to cost tens of billions of dollars.

Furthermore, the oil industry may benefit tremendously from Dr. Smith’s research contribution.  The extraction of oil involves many interconnected stages ranging drilling, chemical treatment and pumping operations.  Every stage requires extensive knowledge of oil-well characteristics for economical operations.  Dr. Smith’s sensor network could reliably monitor the ever-changing and sometimes unpredictable characteristics of the earth formation and provide diagnostic information alerting equipment’s departure from its optimum condition.  Subsequently, the diagnostic information could be fed to a system controller to automatically maintain the equipment in its optimum operating condition.  Dr. Smith’s method could save economic losses that inevitably accompany work stoppage during oil extraction operations.  The savings are greater especially for an offshore oil extraction operation, which requires a greater capital commitment and will become more common as the existing in-land oil wells are depleted.

In addition, Dr. Smith’s research may materialize in the form of an explicit apparatus or method deserving a patent protection.  If a company obtains a patent protection based on Dr. Smith’s research work, it would possess a significant economic advantage over competitors who are barred from utilizing the apparatus or method described in the patent for a period up to twenty years.  After the patent protection expires, the public in general benefits because everyone who wishes to utilize and modify the apparatus or method may do so freely.

Dr. Smith’s research has many applications in various technical disciplines.  In addition to his contribution to improving the reliability of nuclear power plants, his “Integrated Method” may greatly enhance the efficiency of nuclear waste storage operation as well as oil extraction operation.

It is my professional opinion that Dr. Smith’s research, professional knowledge and extraordinary ability place him in the top 5% in the fields of nuclear system operations and nuclear waste management, fields of critical national importance.

I believe Dr. Smith’s expertise would be of great economic value to all those industries striving to increase system reliability and productivity.  Therefore, I firmly support Dr. Smith’s candidacy for “National Interest Waiver” to attain permanent resident status in the United States.  If you have any question, please do not hesitate to call me at (123) 123-1234.


Chi H. Johnson, Sc.D.

Patent Examiner

U.S. Patent and Trademark Office

National Interest Waiver Sample Recommendation Letter #3

Re: National Interest Waiver Petition for Dr. Smith

Dear USCIS Officer,

I am writing this letter of evaluation of Dr. Smith’s credentials for purposes of rendering a professional opinion as to whether the contributions he is presently making to the field of reliability and nuclear engineering substantially exceed those being made by other nuclear engineers and reliability engineers.

I am a Professor and Chairman of the Department of Industrial Engineering at Texas A&M University.  Given my professional background and collaborative experience with Dr. Smith, I am in a unique position to conduct an evaluation of his previous research activities and to discuss the significance of the role he plays in our current research project. The curriculum vita attached explains my qualifications to conduct such an evaluation.  Thus, I do not discuss my qualifications at length here.

Please note that this particular evaluation of his previous research has been conducted through thorough review of :

Smith’s guest seminar presented at Texas A&M University in November 1997, and,

Smith’s resume and publications which he authored or co-authored. Also, I had had an occasion to personally interview Dr. Smith regarding his previous work before he joined our program.

As a result of my review on above materials, it is my professional opinion that the contributions made and being made by Dr. Smith substantially exceed those being made by the majority of engineers in related fields. Here are more detailed descriptions in three major technical fields of his specialty upon which I render this opinion.

Field I: Improving the Operational Availability of Nuclear Power Plants

He identified a list of major culprit components in terms of contributing to the total plant outage time and financial losses. Then, he worked out an innovative strategy for improving power plant operational availability in the area of machine monitoring and diagnostics. Specifically, the following accomplishments are worthy of worldwide recognition:

Formulation of “Integrated Method” for sensor network development,

Recommendation of state-of-the-art monitoring technologies in the design of nuclear power plants, and,

Incorporation of a new discipline of artificial intelligence technique termed Bayesian belief network in the area of machine diagnostics.

It is apparent that the use of these accomplishments in nuclear industry can lead to substantial economic gains. The impact of this research is likely to have not only significant financial benefits in nuclear industry, but also positive applicable repercussions upon other engineering industries (e.g., manufacturing plants, chemical plants, fossil plants, aerospace, etc.).

Field II: Investigating System Reliability in an Extended Operating Cycle of Nuclear    

               Power Plants

Increasing emphasis on economic performance improvement has motivated the nuclear industry to take interest in extending operating cycle length of 2 years to 4 years.  Dr. Smith provided a new mathematical formulation for evaluating the expected reliability level in the new extended operating cycle. Since the concept of increasing the operating cycles of complex engineering systems is still a novel idea, there are not many individuals with expertise in this field.  Dr. Smith’s work will lay groundwork for devising the extension of operating cycles of modern complex engineering systems.

Field III: Investigating Radiation Effects on Reliability of Integrated Circuits

Rapid advances in integrated circuit technologies allow forever increasing the densities of microelectronics. However, these advances are inevitably accompanied by increasing vulnerability to radiation effects.  Dr. Smith identified emerging reliability issues associated with radiation effects on integrated circuits, which will stimulate research interest in the reliability engineering community. He formulated new experimental procedures and essential technical aspects to be reflected in the radiation-based reliability qualification testing on integrated circuit devices.  In our current project, his mathematical knowledge and experimental experience make him the unique individual, best qualified to meet the requirement for success of our current research project. Based on his current professional contributions, we are planning to submit a new research proposal to the National Science Foundation which will explore the dynamic life distribution of soft errors in integrated circuits under combined condition of thermodynamic and radiation stresses. Dr. Smith has made a significant contribution in preparing this proposal.

In summary, Dr. Smith is quick to grasp the essence of complex engineering concepts with multidisciplinary expertise.  Moreover, he is a highly creative researcher with a solid record of achievement. I believe that his contribution is virtually important for the ultimate success of our current project.  It is critical that he continues working in industrial engineering department at Texas A&M university to provide leadership for innovative research projects. I am confident that his professional achievements will be invaluable for reliability engineering activities in both nuclear industry and semiconductor industry in the USA.

It is my sincere belief that Dr. Smith deserves the achievement of “National Interest Waiver” to obtain permanent residency in the USA. If you have any questions regarding this particular evaluation or require additional details regarding it, please feel free to contact me.


James Jackson

Professor and Chairman

Department of Industrial Engineering, Texas A&I University

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