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    J-1 Overview & Categories

    The Center for Global Education & Field Study administers Colorado College's Exchange Visitor Program and issues the Form DS-2019 that exchange visitors use to apply at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate for the J-1 visa to enter the United States.  The Exchange Visitor Program (J-1) is carried out by the Department of State (DOS) pursuant to the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961.  Its purpose is to enhance the understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries through educational and cultural exchanges.

    For a complete list of rules and regulations regarding the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program, please visit the J-1 visa website for detailed information.  It is important that during your stay in the U.S., you maintain lawful J-1 status, as failure to do so can have serious short-term and long-term consequences.

    Our office, the Dean's office, and your host department will work closely with you to obtain your visa, arrange housing and assist you after your arrival on campus.

    Overview of J-1 Visa

    The purpose of the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program is to promote international educational and cultural exchange, in order to develop mutual understanding between the people of the U.S. and other countries.  The J-1 visa is for visitors who are coming to the U.S. for a short-term program in a variety of different areas: such as study, research, teaching or training.  Colorado College sponsors foreign nationals for J-1 Exchange Visitor Visas in the following categories: Professor, Research Scholar, Specialist, and Students.

    Eligibility Requirements for all J-1 Exchange Visitors

    Basic requirements for all J-1 Exchange Visitors:

    1. Intent to pursue appropriate activity (such as research, teaching, training or study)
    2. Intent to return to home country (as determined by consular officer)
    3. Sufficient funding for duration of program
    4. Appropriate background for program activity (i.e. the J-1 visitor meets appropriate degree requirements for category)
    5. Demonstrate adequate English Proficiency 
    6. Maintain health insurance which meets the minimum Dept. of State requirements during the entire J-1 program

    J-1 Categories and Maximum Length of Stay

    J-1 Category
    Primary Purpose
    Maximum Length of Stay
    Subject to 12- or 24-Month Bar on Repeat Participation after J-1 Program is Completed?
    Research Scholar Research; can also teach/lecture, consult, or observe in educational settings 5 years Yes
    Professor Teach/lecture; can also research, consult, or observe in educational settings 5 years Yes
    Specialist Observe, consult, or demonstrate their special knowledge or skills; must demonstrate extraordinary knowledge/experience in specific field 1 year

    Yes, if program is 6 months or longer

    No, if program is less than 6 months

    Short-Term Scholar Research, teach/lecture, consult, or observe special projects 6 months No