Exchange Students and Visiting Scholars

Information for J-1 Scholars & J-1 Students

The Exchange Visitor (J) non-immigrant visa category is for individuals approved to participate in work and study-based exchange visitor programs. Participants are integral to the success of the program. The J-1 visa provides countless opportunities for international candidates to travel and gain experience in the United States. Multifaceted exchange programs enable foreign nationals to come to the U.S. to teach, study, conduct research, demonstrate special skills, or receive on-the-job training for periods ranging from a few weeks to several years.

Please refer to the information below that pertains to you.


J-1 Scholars

Types and Description

J-1 professor and J-1 research scholars must: 

  • Not be a candidate for a tenure-track position
  • Not have participated in and completed a J-1 professor or J-1 research scholar program within the 24 months preceding the beginning date of their new program’s commencement
  • Not have participated in a J visa program for all or part of the 12-month period immediately preceding the start date of the new program, unless one of the following exceptions applies to them:
  1. The participant is currently in a professor or research scholar program and is transferring to another U.S. institution to continue their current J-1 program;
  2. The participant’s prior physical presence in the U.S. on a J visa was less than six months in duration; or
  3. The prior participation was as a short-term scholar. 

J1 short-term scholars: 

  • May stay a maximum of six months;
  • May not be considered for a program extension; and
  • May not be considered for a change of category.

Responsibilities, Requirements, and Regulations

Colleges and departments are expected to provide workspace, library and computer access, a UTCID card, and cross-cultural interaction between the J-1 scholar and the department’s faculty and staff. Departments should refer any concerns about immigration, insurance, orientation to the UTC campus and community, or other matters to the Office of International Scholar Services. Departments must also:

  1. Remind the J-1 scholar to make an appointment with the OISS upon arrival at UTC. (All J-1 Scholars must schedule an orientation session with the OISS within 10 days of arrival at UTC.)
  2. Notify the OISS when the J-1 scholar completes their program at UTC.
  3. Notify the OISS if the J¬1 scholar will not arrive within 30 days of the semester start date.

The department must ensure that the J-1 scholar has the appropriate academic credentials to perform the proposed activity. Some programs may require transcript translation and evaluation by an official evaluator such as World Education Services. You should meet with your department chair and dean to discuss whether the visiting scholar must submit additional academic credentials.

Colleges and departments must determine that the scholar has sufficient English proficiency to perform academically and function on a day-to-day basis. English proficiency for J-1 scholars from countries where English is not an official language must be evaluated by the department before the J-1 Scholar Request Form may be submitted. Departments must submit scores from a recognized English language test, certification from an academic institution or English language school, or evidence of an in-person or teleconference interview.

Please submit the J-1 scholar application form and required attachments at least 120 days prior to the intended program start date. This allows time for the Certificate of Eligibility (Form DS-2019) to be issued and forwarded to the prospective scholar, who must then apply for an entry visa at a US embassy.

 J-1 scholars can be classified as research scholars, professors, short-term scholars, specialists, or students.

The J-1 program facilitates temporary visits to the U.S. for the purpose of studying, teaching, instructing or lecturing, observing, conducting research, consulting, or demonstrating special skills.

The 12-month or two-year home residency requirement (immigration regulation 212[e]) means that those who come to the U.S. with J-1 status cannot become permanent residents, change their status in the U.S., or get work or family-based visa statuses such as H, L, or K until they return to their country of last permanent residence for at least 12 months or two years cumulatively.

  1. 12-Month Bar: Anyone who has been in the U.S. in any J category for more than six months may be barred from reentering the U.S. as a J-1 research scholar or professor for 12 months following the completion of their program or stay. This regulation does not apply to short-term scholars. This requirement may be added at a U.S. embassy after the scholar’s visa appointment.
  2. 24-Month Bar: Anyone who has been in the U.S. as a J-1 research scholar or professor for any length of time and whose SEVIS record is no longer active may be barred from reentering the U.S. as a J-1 research scholar or professor for 24 months following the completion of their program or stay. This requirement may be added at a U.S. embassy after the scholar’s visa appointment.

J-1 scholars must demonstrate sufficient financial support. J-2 dependents who accompany a J-1 scholar require additional funding. The minimum amounts required are:

  • J-1 scholar $1500 per month = $18,000 per year
  • J-2 spouse $600 per month = $7200 per year
  • J-2 child $500 per month = $ 6000 per year

If a J-1 scholar’s support comes from a source other than UTC, evidence of funding must be submitted. Scholars supported by personal funds must provide a bank statement listing funds in U.S. dollars. Scholars supported by government or international entities must provide an official statement, translated into English, which lists funds in U.S. dollars. If a J-1 scholar is required to take a class, the evidence of financial support must cover their tuition. All international students and scholars are required to pay out-of-state tuition at UTC. Current tuition rates are listed here.

Health and accident insurance coverage are mandatory for all J-1 Scholars and their J-2 dependents while they are in the U.S. The J scholar insurance form must be completed before DS-2019 issuance.

You may request to waive the cost of UTC health insurance if you have obtained other coverage before the waiver request deadline. The purchased insurance must meet the university-mandated health coverage criteria. You may read the health insurance requirements on the New Students page.

Complete this form to request an insurance waiver.

A curriculum vitae or resume (in English) must be attached to the J-1 scholar application form.

J-1 scholars must submit a legible copy of their passport ID page(s). Copies of all dependents’ passport ID pages are required as well.

IMPORTANT NOTE: For more detailed information regarding the J-1 visitor program, please visit the U.S. Department of State Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs website.

It is each visitor’s responsibility to understand the detailed conditions of J-1 visitor programs. Requirements related to home country residency, taxation, status changes, future visa applications, and other concerns vary depending on agreements between the U.S. and the visitor’s home country. UTC is not responsible for changes in these requirements.

This document contains all of the information presented above.


Other Forms

Please refer to this document to see if you are eligible for an extension and for procedures on how to obtain an extension.

Please complete this form when you arrive in the U.S.

If you need a new DS-2019, please complete and submit this form.

If you are a J-1 Scholar and need to transfer out of UTC, please complete and submit this form.

You may request to waive the cost of the UTC health insurance if you have obtained other insurance coverage before waiver request deadlines. 

Make sure to read the requirements and complete this form.


J-1 Students

Responsibilities, Requirements, and Regulations

  1. Submit the Exchange Student Application form. The form can be found here.
  2. After the above form is approved, apply to UTC here.

Submit the following to complete your UTC application.

J-1 students must provide documentation of financial resources sufficient for 4.5 (one semester) or nine months (two semesters) of study. This documentation must be received before a DS-2019 may be issued.

Federal financial aid is not available to international students.

Some students may receive financial support from a sponsor, such as an employer, a relative, or their home country government. These students must submit a signed affidavit of support confirming that the sponsor has accepted financial responsibility for them.

Providing Official Proof of Funding

Acceptable documents:  

  • Are original documents issued directly from a bank. 
  • Demonstrate liquid funds in a checking or savings account. 
  • Indicate the exact account balance on the date of document issuance.  
  • Are dated within 6 months of the first date of classes for the desired term. 
  • Are certified (all pages are signed and stamped by a bank official in a color other than black).  

All documents must be written in English. If the original document is not in English, a translation must be provided. Funds must be listed in U.S. currency and, if applicable, submitted with a dated exchange rate from a reputable source.  

Students who will receive funding from UTC may submit a copy of an assistantship or scholarship letter. Private loan or award letters stamped or certified by the lending institution are also acceptable.  

Documents which will NOT be accepted:

  • Insurance policies 
  • Land holdings 
  • Retirement funds 
  • Future income projections 
  • Photocopies, scanned copies, or faxes 

All international students are required to pay out-of-state tuition at UTC. Current tuition rates are listed here.

Students must submit a TOEFL score of 61 or above, an IELTS score of 5.5 or above, or an English proficiency letter from the sending institution.

Health and accident insurance coverage are mandatory for all J-1 students and their J-2 dependents while they are in the U.S.

You may request to waive the cost of UTC health insurance if you have obtained other coverage before the waiver request deadline. The purchased insurance must meet the university-mandated health coverage criteria.

You may read the health insurance requirements on the New Students page. Complete this form to request an insurance waiver.

J-1 scholars must submit a legible copy of their passport ID page(s). Copies of all dependents’ passport ID pages are required as well.


Other Forms

Please complete this form when you arrive in the U.S.

If you need a new DS-2019, please complete and submit this form.

You may request to waive the cost of the UTC health insurance if you have obtained other insurance coverage before the waiver request deadline. 

Make sure to read the requirements and complete this form.

After receiving your DS-2019, please refer to the New Students page.