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J-1 Status

Through the University of Kentucky's Exchange Visitor Program, international scholars may enter the United States temporarily to teach, lecture, study, observe, conduct research, consult, train or demonstrate special skills. “The purpose of the program is to provide foreign nationals with opportunities to participate in educational and cultural programs in the United States and return home to share their experiences and to encourage Americans to participate in educational and cultural programs in other countries.” [CFR 22 62.1 (b)] 

J-1 CATEGORIES AVAILABLE
The J-1 exchange visitor's status includes many different categories that allow for employment or other collaborative opportunities. Participants may be eligible based on several funding sources: personal, government, and international organizations, such as the Fulbright Commission or IREX.

Below is a brief summary of current J-1 categories approved by the Department of State for the University of Kentucky including Instructions For Inviting a J-1 scholar:

Research Scholar and/or Professor
This category is intended for individuals who come primarily to conduct research, teach or lecture (i.e. postdoctoral scholars/fellows, visiting scholars, research associates, etc.). Under most circumstances, the category allows for a maximum stay of 5 years.

There is a 24 month bar on repeat participation.  This means that when the program is completed,  the scholar cannot return to the U.S. as J-1 Research Scholars or Professors for a period of two years.  Scholars may return in another visa status or another J-1 category such as the Short-Term Scholar if the department wishes to continue sponsorship. For departmental instructions, click here.

Short Term Scholar
This is intended for individuals who will remain at UK for a maximum duration of six months to conduct research, to teach, or observe. Extensions cannot be granted beyond the six month period of stay. The Short-Term Scholar is not subject to the 24 month bar on repeat participation. For departmental instructions, click here.

Specialist
This is an expert in the field of a specialized knowledge or skill who enters the U.S. for the purpose of observing, consulting, or demonstrating his or her expertise (i.e. artist, athlete, visiting coach). The duration of this category is one year with no possibility for extensions. Repeat participation is permissable.  For departmental instructions, click here.

Student Interns

Student intern program participants come to the United States to pursue a structured and guided work-based internship program in their specific academic field. Prior work experience is not required. Contact marc.invergo@uky.edu, the J-1 scholar advisor.  The instructions for this category are very unique and unlike the other J-1 status categories.

J-1 Student Academic Training
At times a J-1 student may be hired by the University of Kentucky while participating in Academic Training. The University of Kentucky or another university or institution may approve Academic Training but only if the student is eligible and has been pre-approved by the J-1 advisor. 

This is employment related to a student’s field of study and may be used anytime during his or her program of study but is generally utilized after completion of a degree. Students pursuing a bachelor’s degree or master’s degree are eligible for a total of 18 months of Academic Training. Doctoral graduates receive an additional 18 months, allowing them a maximum of 36 months.

The hiring department provides a job offer letter to the student so the J-1 advisor can authorize the employment. Therefore, there are no applications or fees to U.S. Citizenship & Immigration Services (USCIS). There is also no ISSS processing fee or additional documentation required from departments. For information, contact  Franny Henkel or John Honeycutt.