J-1 Exchange Visitor
J-1 status is used for professors, research scholars, short-term scholars and specialists for temporary participation in approved programs of teaching, research, observation and consultation. The two most common types of J-1 visitors to UCD are research scholars and professors. Postdocs, lecturers, visiting scientists and visiting researchers are all eligible to apply for a J-1 visa. Undergraduate Student Researchers may also apply for a J-1 visa to participate full-time in a prescribed course of study or research project toward a degree at their home institution.
J-1 Scholar and Host Department Responsibilities
The J-1 Exchange Visitor Program was developed by the United States government in conjunction with governments of countries around the world to serve as a forum for educational and cultural exchange. The program provides opportunities for thousands of students, scholars, and other academics to spend time in foreign countries learning skills and sharing their knowledge and culture.
In the United States, the Exchange Visitor program is presently monitored by the Department of State. Organizations–such as the University of California, Davis–have been designated by the Department of State as sponsoring institutions for the J-1 Exchange Visitor program. International visitors who participate in this program in the United States receive J-1 status, which classifies them as members of this exchange program. The official program description of the UC Davis Exchange Visitor Program is:
A program to provide study, teaching, research, observation, consultation, sharing of skills, cross-cultural activities or a combination of these. It is conducted by UCD and institutes and organizations with which it is affiliated for students, professors, researchers, short-term scholars and specialists.
J Program Participation Requirements for Scholars
Scholars must participate in a program that furthers research or teaching objectives and has appropriate activity as described under definitions of the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program.
Scholars must not be subject to any bars to program participation, based on previous time spent in the U.S. in another J status.
Scholars must possess sufficient funding to cover expenses for the duration of their visit.
Scholars must maintain health insurance coverage for the J program duration, including coverage for J-2 dependents, as mandated by the Department of State;
Scholars must possess appropriate academic or similar credentials for program activity.
Scholars must possess sufficient knowledge of English to participate in their program.
Scholar must not be a candidate for a tenure- track position.
The J-1 Scholar’s Responsibilities
Scholars are responsible for fees related to the SEVIS fee and the visa fee, charged by the US Embassy.
If scholars wish to be accompanied by their spouse or children under age 21 when they arrive, they must inform the department and follow instructions for requesting J-2 DS-2019 documents. If scholars wish to have their family join them, they must make a request for J-2 DS-2019 documents after arrival.
Scholars must notify SISS within 10 days of any address change while in the US.
Scholars must maintain health insurance coverage throughout their J-1 program for themselves and any dependents.
Scholars must notify SISS of any program-related changes (source of finances, department location, etc.).
Scholars must request a signature on their DS-2019, using the Travel Signature Form, if they leave the US and plan to re-enter in the same J-1 scholar program.
Scholars must submit a completed Scholar Departure Form to SISS after program completion and before leaving the US.
Information for Departments on How to Request Form DS-2019
Three months before the start date of the J-1 Exchange Visitor’s program–but no later than 60 days prior to the state date—the department should complete the forms, and provide the copies of documents.
Please note: the DS-2019 is not valid if the J-1 scholar does not arrive within 30 days after the start date. If the J-1 scholar has already been granted a visa, the amended DS-2019 will not affect the validity of the visa. If there are at least two more weeks before the scholar plans to arrive, the Department Contact should send the scholar the amended DS-2019 by express courier. If the scholar is unable to receive the amended DS-2019 prior to arrival, the Department Contact can scan and send a PDF copy to the scholar. The scholar must explain to the U.S. Port of Entry Officer at the airport that the DS-2019 start date has been amended and that he or she will receive the original DS-2019 from the department upon arrival at UC Davis.