Hosting a J-1 Exchange Visitor


Exchange visitors must have the education, experience and English language proficiency needed to participate in the academic activities in which they intend to engage. Augusta University host departments must evaluate the individual's academic and professional credentials to determine whether the individual has the credentials needed to participate successfully in the program.

IPSO requires departments/colleges to complete the Certificate of English Language Proficiency which is part of the DS-2019 Department Request for Initial J-1 Visa Status.


It is important that any international scholar coming to the U.S. have the financial resources to support themselves and any accompanying dependents during their stay in the U.S. 

Effective September 1, 2020, the AU J program minimum funding amount increased to $27,000 per year to match the Graduate Research Assistant (GRA) stipend amount. Going forward, the minimum support amount for a J EV in any category will align to match the GRA stipend amount set annually by The Graduate School at Augusta University. The effective date for the future adjustments will be September 1 each year.

J Program Minimum Funding Amounts
  Per year Per month
J-1 Exchange Visitor $27,000 $2,250
J-2 Spouse $6,000 $500
Each J-2 Child (under 21 years old) $2,400 $200

Authorized Categories of Sponsorship at Augusta University

 J-1 Category


  Time Limits


An individual concerned primarily with teaching, lecturing, observing or consulting. J-1 Professors may also participate in departmental research. If the EV will be here primarily to conduct research the Research Scholar category above is more appropriate, even if the individual is a professor in his or her home country.

5 years

Research Scholar

An individual concerned primarily with conducting research, observing, or consulting in connection with a research project and is also allowed to teach or give lectures. Each prospective Research Scholar must have appropriate academic credentials (bachelor’s degree or the equivalent) and experience appropriate to the field of endeavor. 

5 years

Short-term Scholar

A professor, researcher, specialist, or a person with similar education or accomplishments coming to the U.S. on a short-term visit for the purpose of lecturing, observing, consulting, training, or demonstrating special skills. 

6 months


An individual who is an expert in a field of specialized knowledge or skill coming to the U.S. for observing, consulting, or demonstrating special skills and increase the exchange of ideas with American counterparts. 

1 year

Student Intern


A foreign student currently enrolled and pursuing a degree at a post secondary academic institution outside the U.S. whose U.S. internship will "fulfill the educational objectives for his or her current degree program at his or her home institution." 

Up to 12 months per foreign degree or major

The J-1 Exchange Visitor category may not be used for the following:

  • The employment of persons in nonacademic staff positions
  • Tenure-track or tenured faculty appointments
  • Foreign medical graduates who will be engaged in clinical activities, including training. The Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) issues J-1 visas for the purpose of graduate medical training.
  • Clinical appointments to any Augusta University college, internship or program of study that includes clinical responsibilities, or patient contact or care.  


Since this is an immigration classification intended to promote educational and cultural exchange, there is an expectation that J-1 status holders will return home to apply the knowledge and skills gained in the U.S. As a result there are certain restrictions placed upon individuals who have previously been in the U.S. in J-1 status. These restrictions apply to individuals who have completed their previous J program and seek to return to begin a new program as either a J Research Scholar or as a Professor.

12-month bar: A person who previously held J status in any category other than Short-term Scholar for more than six months cannot begin a new J-1 program in either the Research Scholar or Professor classification until the individual has been out of J status for 12 months or more. (Please note that this bar does not prevent someone who is actively engaged in a J program from transferring his/her J-1 sponsorship to Augusta University.)

24-month bar: A person who previously held J-1 status (regardless of how long he/she was actually present in the U.S.) in either a Professor or Research Scholar category cannot return to the U.S. to begin a new J-1 program as a Research Scholar or as a Professor until he/she has been out of J status as a Research Scholar or Professor for two years. This is a different requirement from the two-year home residency requirement that is attached to some J status holders. 

Two-Year Home-Country Physical Presence Requirement (Section 212(e) of the Immigration and Nationality Act and PL-94-184 as amended)  

Exchange visitors whose programs are financed in whole or in part  directly or indirectly  by either their government or by the U.S. government are required to reside in their home country for two years following completion of their program before they are eligible for immigrant status, temporary worker (H) status or intra-company transferee (L) status. Likewise exchange visitors who are acquiring a skill which is in short supply in their home country will be subject to the same two-year home-country residence requirement. These skills appear on the Exchange Visitor Skills List. The U.S. Department of State reserves the right to make the final determination regarding 212(e).

Note that marriage to a U.S. citizen or legal permanent resident or birth of a child in the United States does not remove this requirement. The requirement also applies to the J-2 dependent(s) of exchange visitors who are subject to the requirement. Some but not all exchange visitors are subject. The purpose of this requirement is to have the home country benefit from the exchange visitor's experience in the U.S. Exchange visitors come to the U.S. for a specific objective such as program of study or a research project. The requirement is intended to prevent a participant from staying longer than necessary for the objective and to ensure that he or she will spend at least two years in the home country before coming back to the U.S. for a long-term stay.