J-1 Student Employment: Academic Training


Please note that these instructions are intended for J-1 students on the Howard J program. If you are a J-1 student but your DS-2019 is issued by an agency or institution other than Howard, you must contact your program sponsor to gain authorization for academic training.

I. What is Academic Training?

Academic training is a type of employment directly related to your major area of study that is authorized by your J-1 program sponsor who issues your DS-2019 form. It is designed for students to apply knowledge and skills learned at school.

II. Who May Engage in Academic Training?

All J-1 students in degree or non-degree programs may apply for academic training either during the course of study or after completion of studies. Students may work part-time while school is in session and full-time during the summer and winter breaks.

III. Approval from your J-1 Responsible Officer

To qualify for "academic training," you must first obtain approval in writing from the OISS. If your J-1 sponsor is another agency, and if you are uncertain how to reach your J-1 Responsible Officer, the staff at the OISS can help you find out, but has no authority to grant employment permission.

IV. Eligibility

  1. You must be in good academic standing at the school named on your Form DS-2019.
  2. The proposed employment must be directly related to your major field of study.
  3. Throughout your "Academic Training" you must maintain permission to stay in the United States, in J-1 student status, and apply for extensions as necessary.
  4. You must maintain health insurance coverage for yourself and any J-2 dependents throughout your Academic Training.

V. Duration of Academic Training

  1. Your employment may be authorized for the length of time necessary to complete the goals and objectives of the training, provided that the amount of time is approved by both your academic adviser and your Responsible Officer. It may not exceed the amount of time it took for you to complete your full course of study, or 18 months, whichever is shorter. If you receive a Ph.D., however, your post-doctoral training may last as long as 36 months, provided you have a postdoctoral position in an academic institution.
  2. Part-time employment for "Academic Training" counts against the 18 or 36 month limit the same as full-time employment.
  3. You may have only one opportunity for Academic Training regardless how many degrees you receive.
  4. Academic Training before completion of studies will be deducted from the total 18 or 36 months.

VI. How to Apply

  1. You must apply for Academic Training before the ending date on your DS-2019.
  2. A job offer letter from your prospective employer that includes: job title, a brief description of the "goals and objectives" of your "training program" (your employment), the dates and location of the employment, the number of hours per week, salary, and the name and address of your "training supervisor" (the quotations come from the regulations). Make sure that your employer's letter includes all of these details. (
  3. Academic advisors recommendation. Give a copy of your employer's letter to your academic adviser for use in completing the advisor's recommendation form which is in the academic training application packet..
  4. Bring the job offer letter and the advisor's recommendation form to the OISS. The OISS advisor will write you a letter authorizing the academic training. The OISS may also issue you a new DS-2019 form extended for your academic training, for no more than 18 months at a time.