OIA J-1 Scholar Information

Applying for J-1 Visa, you will need:

  • Valid unexpired passport (valid for at least six months beyond your intended stay)
  • Form DS-2019
  • SEVIS fee receipt
  • Evidence of financial support
  • Visa fee
  • Passport-size photograph
  • Additional forms and/or documents as required by the consulate at which you will apply

Immigration Documents

  • DS-2019
    • ​also called "Certificate of Eligibility," is required to obtain a J-1 visa at the U.S. consulate and is used to enter the U.S. It indicates your length of stay in the U.S. on your J-1 program, authorizes you to participate in The Ohio State University J-1 Exchange Visitor program and is used for travel outside, and reentry to, the U.S. Scholars should keep all copies of DS-2019s issued to them.
  • Form I-94
    • a small white card usually stapled inside your passport upon entry into the U.S. This card is also referred to as the arrival/departure card since it is used to record your arrival into and departure from the U.S. It shows your arrival date into the U.S., the port of entry and your immigration status as a J-1 visa holder. In addition, it shows the date by which you must depart the U.S., which should be reflected by the letters D/S. D/S stands for "Duration of Status" and your duration of legal status in the U.S. is indicated by the expiration date of your Form DS-2019.
  • Visa
    • the stamp that a U.S embassy or consulate affixes to the passport to indicate the kind of nonimmigrant status that a person is seeking. The only time you are required to have a valid visa is when you enter the U.S.
  • Passport
    • an internationally recognized travel document that verifies the identity and nationality of the bearer. Your passport should be valid at least six months into the future.

Arrival Notification Requirement

  • The United States government rules allow a limited time to enter the U.S. based on the start date of your DS-2019 form. You must report in person to Ohio State after you arrive. You can enter up to 30 days before and no more than 20 days after the start date listed on your DS-2019 form.
  • Notify your host department immediately if there will be a delay in beginning your J-1 program more than 20 days after the start date of your DS-2019 form. Your host department will contact the Office of International Affairs to update your immigration document and SEVIS record. Failure to update your SEVIS record will result in denial of the visa stamp or entry into the U.S.
  • To complete the government reporting requirement, you must attend the Office of International Affairs' check-in and orientation. Office of International Affairs scholar advisors review your immigration documents, collect your residential U.S. address and health insurance coverage information and provide orientation. Register for check-in and orientation online.

Health Insurance

  • The U.S. government requires all J-1 scholars and their J-2 dependents to have health insurance coverage that meets certain minimum requirements throughout their entire stay in the U.S. If you will be using The Ohio State University Visiting Scholar Insurance Program (The Gallagher Plan), you should apply online for this insurance ahead of time to begin on the day of your arrival in the U.S.
  •  For detailed information regarding insurance, please see the Required Health Insurance section of the Office of International Affairs (OIA) website.

Requirement for Maintaining Status:

  • One must notify The Office of International Affairs within 10 days of an address change so that they may report (SEVIS).
    • Send an email to iss@osu.edu using your Ohio State email account;
    • Type "Address Change" in the subject line; and
    • Include your full name, date of birth, and new address in the body of the email.
  • Maintain a passport that is valid for at least six months into the future at all times;
  • Report to International Affairs any significant changes in your program, such as a substantial change in funding, physical change in the program location, change in department, or change of activity within original objectives. International Affairs must approve all changes in advance;
  • Maintain health insurance for J-1 Scholar and all J-2 Dependents.
  • Do not work off-campus without first obtaining special employment authorization from International Affairs—such authorization is granted only in rare circumstances.