Every year, about 300,000 international visitors come to the U.S. to work, study, teach, intern, and more through the J-1 visa program. International interns and trainees have specialized skills and life experiences that help build cultural bridges and increase diversity! The program helps strengthen relationships between people of the U.S. and people of other countries, fostering a global understanding. 

Along with the community benefits, visitors to the U.S. gain valuable work experience, network with professionals, and get to improve their English skills.

At Intrax Global Internships, we’ve helped people navigate the J-1 visa as a designated U.S. J-1 visa sponsor for over 40 years. We’re dedicated to helping J-1 interns have the experiences of a lifetime working for a U.S. company, and gain skills while doing it! 

We’ll go over the entire J-1 visa program from what it is, who’s eligible, and how you can participate. Keep reading to learn more! 

What Is The J-1 Visa Program?

The J-1 visa is a temporary, nonimmigrant visa for visitors who want to participate in the United States Exchange Visitor Program (EVP). The J-1 visa program (or the EVP) was created by the U.S. Department of State. This program allows international visitors to come to the U.S. to teach, work, intern, train, counsel, and research!

Participants of the EVP also need to meet certain eligibility requirements to obtain a J-1 visa. The requirements differ depending on which category you’re in! We’ll break down the different categories and what you’ll need to get your visa in each situation. 

J-1 Visa Jobs

Before you apply for a J-1 visa, you’ll need to know what exchange visitor category you want to be in. You can participate in the EVP as any of these categories:

  • Au pair 
  • Camp counselor
  • Government visitor
  • Intern
  • International visitor selected by Department of State
  • Physician
  • Professor and research scholar
  • Short-term scholar
  • Specialist
  • Student in a college or university
  • Student in secondary school
  • Summer work travel
  • Teacher
  • Trainee

Each category has different requirements and allowed visit durations. 

How Long Can J-1 Visitors Stay In The U.S.?

One of the requirements of the J-1 visa is that participants need to have a plan to return to their home country. That being said, each type of J-1 visa program  has unique requirements and visit durations. Check out our breakdown below! 

If you’re interested in working as a J-1 intern or trainee, Intrax Global Internships can help you find J-1 visa jobs and guide you through the process. Find out below if you’re eligible! 

Intern & Trainee Eligibility

An internship or training program may be the perfect experience for you, since interning or training abroad makes you more desirable to employers and increases your cultural skills! IES Abroad’s Alumni Survey found that 98% of students who traveled abroad found that it increased their understanding of their values and biases. Becoming a J-1 visa intern or trainee is the perfect way to gain cultural understanding and expand the way you look at the world. 

At Intrax, we can help you with your J-1 visa process if you want to intern or train. If you decide to become a J-1 visa trainee or intern, there are some requirements you need to meet before you can visit the U.S. 

Interns and trainees both need to have educational experience in their field of study, but there are a few key differences between the two:

  • Interns need to be enrolled in a university or be graduated within 12 months of the program start date
  • Trainees need a degree and one year experience or a total of five years experience 
  • Interns can visit the U.S. for three weeks to one year
  • Trainees can visit the U.S. for three weeks to 18 months

You’ll also need to make sure you work in an eligible J-1 visa category. Eligible internship and training program categories include:

  • Agriculture, forestry, and fishing
  • Arts and culture
  • Construction and building trades
  • Education, social sciences, library science, counseling, and social services
  • Hospitality and tourism
  • Information media and communications
  • Management, business, commerce, and finance
  • Public administration and law
  • The sciences, engineering, architecture, mathematics, and industrial occupations

Your J-1 visa sponsor can help you find the right category for you!

J-1 Visa Sponsors

Getting a J-1 visa means you must have a J-1 visa sponsor (like us!) support you. J-1 visa sponsors walk you through the process of getting your visa and support you during your time in the U.S.

Designated J-1 sponsors screen, select, and support EVP participants. To be eligible to become a sponsor, organizations must meet these requirements:

  1. Be able to follow all J-1 visa employer requirements specific to the Code of Federal Regulations.
  2. Be able to meet financial requirements.
  3. Have three years of experience working in the field of international exchange.

As a J-1 visa sponsor, we guide J-1 exchange visitors through the process of getting your visa, help you find the best internships or training programs, and provide communication for both you and your host!

We will issue the DS-2019 to you (learn more about this document below), and we can help secure J-2 visas for your family members traveling with you. The J-2 visa allows family members of J-1 visa holders to travel with them during their program. 

Intrax Global Internships is dedicated to helping you have a great J-1 visa experience. We’ll provide fast and reliable service throughout the entire process! 

J-1 Visa Employers

Companies looking to hire J-1 visa participants are most likely to work with J-1 interns and trainees. Hiring globally is a great recruitment strategy because it helps your company hire top talent that provides diverse perspectives.

To be a J-1 visa host, employers must meet a set of J-1 visa employer requirements. Companies looking to host international interns or trainees must have:

  • An Employer Identification Number
  • Worker’s Compensation Insurance (or proof of exemption or self-insurance)
  • A ratio of 5 full-time employees to 1 intern
  • Annual revenue of $3 million, or a minimum of 25 employees or an on-site visit
  • A training site of at least 50% American employees
  • An on-site direct supervisor (not remote)
  • A primary office and website language of English

We hold both our hosts and participants to high standards to ensure a great experience for everyone. If you’re interested in hosting a J-1 visa intern or trainee, get started by requesting information here!

Who Participates in the J-1 Visa Program?

J-1 visa program participants are citizens of foreign countries who want to enter the United States. Anyone who wants to work in one of the designated exchange visitor category J-1 visa programs  can participate in the EVP if they meet the requirements!

What Countries Participate In The J-1 Visa Program?

Citizens of any country can participate in the EVP, and there’s no limit on the number of people who can visit each year! Different countries may have different J-1 visa processes. Timelines and interviews can vary from country to country, but we have guides for an India J-1 visa, Canada J-1 visa, and UK J-1 visa to help with your specific situation! 

What Companies Participate In The J-1 Visa Program?

More and more companies are hosting international interns. Hiring interns and trainees from international countries is the perfect way to hire for diversity and highly skilled workers, while increasing cultural competence in the workplace. 

At Intrax Global Internships, we work with leading companies and universities looking to work with talented international visitors and provide them with valuable work experience in the U.S. Some of our customers include:

  • Robinhood
  • Ripple
  • The University of Waterloo
  • The University of Toronto
  • Omnium
  • Tatari
  • memSQL
  • The University of British Columbia

Plenty of other companies are investing in global talent. Check out this list of 10 companies that hire international students for valuable internships:

  1. Accenture
  2. Adobe Research
  3. Capital One
  4. Cisco Systems
  5. Google
  6. Microsoft
  7. IBM Corporation
  8. Intel
  9. JP Morgan
  10. LinkedIn

Not sure where to start? Search for available internships on our site to find programs from leading companies!

How To Apply For The J-1 Visa Program

Once you’ve learned about the different J-1 visa jobs and found the right category for you, it’s time to apply! We’ll break down the process of getting your visa, from the application to the interview! When you decide to get started, we’ll work with you to ease you through the process of getting your visa and preparing for an amazing trip to the U.S.

Application Process

The J-1 visa application process with Intrax requires eight steps:

  1. Fill out your DS-2019 application
  2. Submit required documents
  3. Pay program fees (check pricing here!)
  4. Verify placement with host company
  5. Attend pre-departure orientation
  6. Receive your DS-2019
  7. Interview with the U.S. Embassy or Consulate
  8. Receive your visa!

We’ve outlined some parts of the process to make your experience as simple as possible! 

J-1 Visa Application Documents 

Securing your J-1 visa requires multiple documents. If it seems intimidating, don’t worry—we’re here to help! These are the U.S. Department of State forms you’ll need while you apply:

  1. DS-2019: Your official certificate of eligibility for exchange visitor status.
  2. DS-7002: Your internship or training placement plan.
  3. DS-160: The online nonimmigrant visa application.

Below, you’ll find our breakdown of these forms, as well as all the documents needed throughout the application process

Along with these official documents, there are other documents you will need while applying and filling out these forms:

  1. Host company agreement: We’ll send this to your host company, who will complete it and return it.
  2. English test results: You can send us results from tests like the International English Language Testing System (IELTS), Test of English as a Foreign Language (TOEFL), or Test of English for International Communication (TOEIC).
  3. Proof of employment or university degree/certificate: Most interns and trainees will need to provide this to qualify.
  4. Resume/CV: We will also need to see your prior work experience!
  5. Passport: You’ll need to submit a copy of the biographical page of your passport. 
  6. A travel itinerary for your program: This is needed to complete the DS-160.
  7. Past international travel dates: You’ll need to provide the last five dates of your trips to the U.S. (if you’ve been there before) and your general international travel history for the past five years.
  8. A photo of yourself: To complete the final step of the nonimmigrant visa application, you’ll need a photo that follows the photo requirements

Your J-1 visa sponsor can provide resources, and help you get your documents ready if you get stuck. Once you complete your application, it’s best to schedule your J-1 interview right away! 

J-1 Visa Interview

Every J-1 visa applicant needs to complete an interview. The interview is mandatory for people over 13 and under 80 years old. 

As you move forward, your J-1 visa application is going to vary by country. Take a look at this list to find your nearest U.S. Embassy or Consulate to schedule your interview! You can pay your $160 Embassy fee on the website. The earlier you schedule, the better—make sure to check wait times

Collecting your J-1 documents throughout the application process means that you will be well-prepared for your interview! Here are all the documents you’ll need to bring:

  • Passport
  • Form DS-160 confirmation page
  • Application fee receipt (if you were required to pay it)
  • Your personal photo from the DS-160 application (2x2 format)
  • The DS-2019
  • The DS-7002

While they’re not required, we recommend bringing the following documents:

  1. Bank statements or financial documents: You may be asked about your financial status to confirm that you can afford travel costs, so it will be helpful to have evidence.
  2. Visa appointment confirmation: In preparation of scheduling mistakes, you can print and bring your visa interview confirmation letter.
  3. Transcripts: Most interns and trainees will need to have studied in their field to qualify for a J-1 visa. Transcripts can be helpful to demonstrate your studies and expertise in a certain field!
  4. Demonstration of nonimmigrant intent: Since the J-1 visa is a nonimmigrant visa, you’ll need to demonstrate that you plan to return to your home country—proof can include financial, employer, familial, or historical evidence. 

Once you have all your documents in order, it’s time to prepare! Check out our 10 smart tips to confidently answer J-1 visa interview questions

J-1 Visa Intern Pay

If you are applying to be a J-1 visa intern, you’ll likely get a paid internship.

How much interns get paid depends on a company’s budget. You can use our intern pay calculator to find out how much you’ll earn during your time as an intern! 

J-1 Visa Health Insurance

When you become a J-1 visa exchange visitor, having J-1 visa health insurance is required. J-1 visa holders and any family members traveling with them need health insurance that:

  • Covers sickness and accidents
  • Has deductibles under $500 per accident or sickness
  • Provides minimum medical benefits of $100,000 per accident or sickness
  • Allocates $50,000 for evacuation of the individual’s home country for medical reasons
  • Allocates $25,000 for return of individual’s remains to their home country in the unlikely event of death

J-1 visa sponsors can’t sponsor an intern unless they’ll have the medical support they need! The easiest option is to choose the insurance plan your sponsor recommends. If you work with Intrax Global Internships, you’ll receive coverage from Envisage Global Insurance. You’ll pay a $100 copay for most medical visits and $250 for emergency room visits.

You’ll want to consider these costs and all J-1 visa costs before you decide to join the program! 

Become A J-1 Visa Visitor With Intrax Global Internships

The J-1 visa program helps people of different cultures come to the U.S. for educational and cultural experiences. International exchange creates understanding between people from the U.S. and people of other countries, breaking down cultural barriers, teaching new perspectives, and providing learning opportunities!

At Intrax Global Internships, we believe that the J-1 visa program is an amazing opportunity for visitors to expand their worldview and grow their skills! Being an intern or trainee in the U.S. gains you valuable work experience and increases your cultural awareness. We’ll help you through the entire process of becoming an intern or trainee in the U.S.

Let us be your guide to getting a J-1 visa! Still have questions? Read our FAQ or request information

When you’re ready to become a J-1 exchange visitor and have the experience of a lifetime in the U.S., contact us to get started!

Dec 14, 2022

More from 



View All