J Student Visa
J-1 Visa Defined
The J-1 visa is generally used for students in specific educational exchange programs such as the Fulbright, LASPAU, DAAD, AmidEast, etc. Educational institutions, such as Harvard University, may also sponsor J-1 visas for students in their degree programs. The purpose of the J-1 Exchange Visitor 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. The J-1 visa program is managed by a shared database called SEVIS. To be eligible for a J-1 visa sponsored by Harvard, one must first meet the following criteria:
At least 50% of the cost of tuition and fees comes from sources other than personal funds, such as a government agency, official scholarship agency or employer; (student personal loans, e.g. HELP loans do not qualify)
The student's government funding requires the use of the J-1 visa based on receiving a government scholarship.
The J-1 visa and the J-2 visa (for dependents) are obtained by presenting to a U.S. embassy or consulate a Form DS-2019 issued by the Exchange Visitor sponsor.
All Exchange Visitors and their dependents (spouse and unmarried children of age 21 or under) must have health insurance in effect which covers them for sickness or accidents during the period of time when they are in J status. If a J-1 or J-2 visa holder fails to maintain health insurance coverage, his/her status may be terminated.