J-1 Visa Program

J-1 Regulations

A look inside the J-1 Visa program

The U.S. Department of State introduced the J-1 Visa more than 45 years ago to promote international exchange and cultural understanding. The U.S. Department of State:

  • Approves and issues visas through embassies in a participant’s home country. International professionals apply for a J-1 Trainee Visa, good for 18 months. The American Embassy also issues J-2 Visas for dependents.
  • Grants a set number of eligibility certificates – called Form DS-2019 – to qualified sponsors, including CIEE
  • Oversees the program, and sets and enforces rules to guarantee that visa holders are supported and are benefiting from cultural exchange
  • Requires an approved training plan – called Form DS-7002 – to ensure proper professional development. Learn more 

U.S. Department of State website

Host organizations

Host organizations include American businesses, nonprofits, government offices, and educational institutions. The host organization:

  • Offers positions that promote professional development and exchange
  • Creates the DS-7002 training plan as part of the application process
  • Supervises and trains participants during the program by executing the training plan
  • Provides opportunities for cultural exchange for participants

J-1 Visa sponsors

CIEE is one of the largest J-1 visa sponsors entrusted by the U.S. government to manage the program, ensuring compliance with program guidelines and that rigorous quality standards are met.