J-1 Scholar Application, Extensions & Transfer


Step 1: Instructions for the J-1 Applicant

The J-1 Applicant should complete Sections 1, 2, and 3 of the J-1 Scholar Application Packet and sign the statement at the end of Section 3.

In addition to Sections 1, 2, and 3 of this form, the J-1 Applicant should submit the following materials to his/her host department:

  • A copy/scan of the J-1 Applicant’s main passport information page (and the main passport page for each J-2 dependent family member who will accompany the J-1 to the US).
  • If the Scholar will be supported by personal funding or by funding from an institute or organization other than Syracuse University, the Scholar must include any necessary financial documentation (award letter, bank statement, salary letter, etc.) and indicate the sources of funding in Section 2. The amount should be at least $1200/month for the J-1 Applicant and $500/month for each dependent J-2 spouse or child(ren).

Step 2: Instructions for the Department

After receiving all documents from the J-1 Applicant, the department should complete Section 4 and submit the entire J-1 Scholar Application Packet (Sections 1,2,3, and 4) along with any accompanying financial documentation and passport copies to the Slutzker Center for International Services.

Departments must also include a copy of an appointment letter for any incoming J-1 Scholar or Professor. The appointment letter is required for both paid and unpaid visiting scholars and professors.

Please submit all of the requested information. The Slutzker Center must have these materials in order to process your request for your prospective J-1 Applicant’s immigration documents.

Note to Applicants and Departments: Syracuse University will not provide J-1 sponsorship longer than one year at a time for independently-funded scholars; independently-funded must seek an annual extension of their J-1 sponsorship for continuance of their program.

Step 3: Slutzker Center for International Services

After receiving all documents from the J-1 Applicant and Department as well as the proof of finances, the Slutzker Center for International Services will process the DS-2019 Forms for the J-1 Scholar or Professor and for all J-2 Dependents in the US Citizenship and Immigration Services SEVIS Database (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System).

Along with the DS-2019(s), the Slutzker Center for International Services will prepare a packet for the J-1 Applicant which will include a cover letter with information about: the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program, paying the SEVIS fee, obtaining the J-1 Visa, travel to the United States, and general information about Syracuse University and the city of Syracuse, New York. The department will be asked to send this information along with the department’s appointment letter to the J-1 Applicant (likewise, the Slutzker Center can ship items if provided with an express mail account).

Processing Time: Allow at least 1 week for the Slutzker Center to process and prepare all supporting documents. Overall processing time for the scholar to obtain a J-1 visa and arrive in the US is a minimum of at least 8 weeks (more if there are delays due to Technology Alert List or background checks).


  • Timing: Departments and Scholars should notify Slutzker Center 1-2 months before the end date indicated on the J-1 DS-2019 in order to process an extension on time.
  • All extensions must be completed in the SEVIS system before the end date on your DS-2019.
  • Maximum period of participation in a J-Program: 
    • J-1 Professor or Research Scholar: Continuous five-year period on a “use or lose” basis
    • J-1 Specialist or Student Intern: One year
    • J-1 Short-term Scholar: Six months
Extensions of stay may be possible if the J-1 Exchange Visitor has not exceeded the time allowed under his/her J-1 status. To process an extension, both the department and the J-1 Exchange Visitor will need to complete the J-1 Extension form and submit it with an updated appointment letter to the Slutzker Center for International Services. The J-1 Extension form and  the J-1 Student Intern Evaluation forms are available on the Slutzker Center website in the Forms Section.

30-day Grace Period: Exchange visitors can also remain in the U.S. for an additional 30 days beyond the expiration date on the DS-2019 provided they are in legal status. The 30-day grace period is meant to allow the J-visa holder time for travel and preparation for departure. The exchange visitor may not work during this period.

NOTE: You are not eligible for extension if you have obtained a waiver or recommendation of waiver of the two-year home residency requirement.


An exchange visitor can transfer to another program sponsor (i.e. transfer to another University) if: 
  • the purpose of the program remains the same (same general subject area)
  • the visitor will remain in the same category (i.e. Professor will remain a Professor)
  • the visitor has not reached the maximum stay limit (5 years for Research Scholar/Professor; 1 year for Specialist; 1 year for Student Intern; 6 months for Short-term Scholar)
  • the visitor has not obtained a waiver of the two-year home residency requirement

In order to transfer, written release is needed from the current J-1 sponsor. To process the transfer, the J-1 scholar and the new host institution’s J-1 advisor must complete the J-1 Scholar Transfer-Out form which is available on the Slutzker Center website in the Forms Section and submit it to the Slutzker Center.

NOTE: You are not eligible for transfer if you have obtained a waiver or recommendation of waiver of the two-year home residency requirement.