Admission to the Program

Those eligible to be appointed as Exchange Visitors are faculty, professors, researchers, and students who wish to pursue an academic program of study, academic research, coursework, and/or writing projects while in residence at Howard University.
In selecting applicants for Visiting Scholar status, Howard University considers the applicant’s qualifications, the strength of her or his past, current, and proposed research projects, the thematic connections to the work of the sponsoring department, and the ability of Howard's faculty and library resources to meet the applicant's research needs.  A working knowledge of spoken and written English is necessary. Applicants must also have the written commitment of a Howard University faculty member that she or he will serve as an advisor during the time of the residency.  Transfer to another program will not be considered.
Program Application
The Office of International Student Services is required by the Department of State to play a pivotal role in the selection of an Exchange Visitor.
Those wishing to apply should send, preferably by e-mail:

  • A completed application form, either the:
    • Visiting Scholar with J-1 Visa Support Application or
    • Visiting Scholar Application
  • A detailed Curriculum Vita
  • A research proposal that includes the importance of the project, relevance to the sponsoring department’s larger mission, and the applicant’s specific objectives while in residency at Howard University

Applications should also include hard copies on letterhead of:

  • Two letters of recommendation
  • Copies of degrees, certificates, licenses, and relevant documents
  • Written commitment by a Howard University faculty member of agreement to serve as advisor

Hard copy materials may be submitted to: Sponsoring Department
                                                            Howard University
                                                            2400 Sixth Street, N.W.
                                                            Washington, D.C.  20059

Other General Information

J-2 Dependents
An exchange visitor's spouse or child enters the U.S. in J-2 status and may stay for as long as the J-1 person is authorized to remain. For traveling and re-entering the U.S., J-2 dependents need all the same documents as the J-1 would need as outlined above including a DS-2019 that is produced with the J-2's biographical information.

J-2 Work Permission
A person in J-2 status may apply to the BCIS for permission to accept employment. Permission will be granted only if the employment is designed to support the spouse and child or children, not the J-1 exchange visitor. Pick up the application packet at the OISS. The processing time for work permit at the BCIS Service Center is approximately three months.

Understanding Your "Immigration Status"

Visa Stamp
The visa stamp in your passport was obtained at a U.S. embassy or consulate abroad and is used for entering the U.S. The visa stamp functions as a key to enter the U.S. Once you are here in the U.S., you do not need to keep your visa stamp current. It is only when you are leaving the U.S. and need to return that you must be sure that you have a valid U.S. visa stamp to re-enter the U.S. [Note: Canadian citizens are not required to have a passport (if entering the U.S. from within the Western hemisphere) or visa stamp, but they must show their DS-2019 and proof of Canadian citizenship at the U.S. port of entry.]

J-1 Visa
A J-1 visa stamp is issued to a participant in an Exchange Visitor Program approved by the U.S. Information Agency. Participants can be in one of a variety of categories, including student, research scholar, and professor. The agency issuing the DS-2019 is called the sponsor.

Immigration Status
Immigration status is granted at the U.S. port of entry. You have J-1 student status. In most situations your visa type and immigration status are the same, unless you have changed your immigration status after entering the U.S. People in J-1 status who are subject to the "two-year home country residency requirement" may not change to any other non-immigrant status within the U.S. Exchange visitors who enter the U.S. in one exchange visitor category, such as "student," are rarely permitted to change to another category, such as "researcher."