The J-1 visa is designed to provide educational and cultural exchange programs, and to promote the sharing of individuals, knowledge and skills in education, arts and sciences. This visa enables people to participate in exchange visitor programs in the United States. Participants in this visa include students, trainees involved in on-the-job training, teachers engaged in research and teaching and international visitors interested in traveling, researching, consulting and demonstrating specific knowledge. Your spouse and/or unmarried children under the age of 21 may apply for entry under J-2 status.
You should apply for a J-1 Visa at the U.S. Embassy or Consulate with jurisdiction over your place of permanent residence. While you may apply at any U.S. consular office abroad, it is advised you apply within your jurisdiction. Participants in the J exchange program should present a Form IAP-66, prepared by a designated sponsoring organization.
The following documents are required for the J-1 Visa:
- A filled-in visa application Form OF-156.
- One recent photograph 1 & 1/2 inches square (37mm x 37mm) of each applicant, with the entire face visible. The picture should be taken before a light background and without head covering.
- A passport, valid for travel to the United States for at least six months longer than your intended visit.
- A completed form, IAP-66, prepared by a designated sponsoring organization.
You must also demonstrate the that you have binding ties to a residence in a foreign country which you have no intention of abandoning, and that you are coming to the United States for a temporary period of time.