Ellis is the first all-in-one platform for international students. We believe that international students should have a single platform to set up the essential services needed to start an American life – one that also automates the complex immigration paperwork+processes throughout their journey.
As an international student, you quickly realize that there is an irreducible amount of work that goes into setting up the foundation to live in the US. From the moment students clear US customs, they scramble to get a prepaid phone plan, set up a bank account without a social security number, learn the nuances of international transfers, and apply for a social security card – all with little to no guidance. Students then spend years dealing with arcane visa processes, navigating poorly designed websites, and maintaining their travel and immigration documents in several disjointed systems – all leading to long hours of stress and, in the worst scenarios, risk of deportation.
We believe that the effort to discover, set up, and maintain these fragmented services is, secretly, the root cause of all the anxiety that comes with adjusting to a new life in the US as an immigrant. Ellis attempts to fix this by creating a single source of truth for immigration information and building products that are hyper relevant to the student’s immigration journey.
How does it work for prospective international students? Ellis will ask a simple set of questions, collect basic documents (e.g. Passport, I-20 or DS-2019) and bestow students with a US phone plan, a multi-currency checking account, and a debit card – months before their relocation to the US. Ellis then uses the same information and documents to create a cohesive immigration profile to automate all of the paperwork and processes required to be an international student (through bots and reverse-engineering). Applying for a social security card, filing non-resident tax returns, building a credit profile with the bureaus, renewing a visa, tracking travel dates, and petitioning for work authorization can be done in a few clicks – with Ellis processing all of the paperwork and payments automatically.
Yes; check out TechCrunch's coverage on our most recent round of funding.
Of course–more than half of our team are current or former immigrants. We're happy to work with you to figure out the best visa path for you, whether that's an H1-B or another visa.