Program Details

Program Details

Purpose of Exchange Visitor Program

The objective of J-1 exchange visitor program is “to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries by means of educational and cultural exchanges.” [Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act (Fulbright-Hayes Act) of 1961]

There are four principal parties interacting in the J Exchange Visitor Program process:

  • Department of State (DOS), which issues J visas to Exchange Visitors (EV) and their dependents and creates and administers federal regulations and policies governing the Exchange Visitor Program.
  • Exchange Visitor Program Sponsors, which are legal entities (such as Global Education) that have applied for and received designation from DOS to conduct an Exchange Visitor Program.
  • Exchange Visitors, who are aliens that have been selected by an exchange visitor sponsor to participate in a particular exchange visitor program.
  • Department of Homeland Security (DHS), which manages the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS), admits an alien to the U.S. in J exchange visitor status, and which adjudicates certain immigration benefits for J exchange visitors and their dependents.

 Global Education is authorized by DOS as the J-1 program sponsor (exchange visitor program number P-1-27741) for Millersville University. Participants in the exchange visitor program will enter the U.S. on a J-1 visa, which is the nonimmigrant visa classification for “exchange visitors.” In order to obtain a J-1 visa or hold J-1 status, the individual must have a Form DS-2019 issued by Global Education. J-1 visa category should not be used as a means of general employment although exchange visitors may be temporarily employed by Millersville as long as their primary activities are teaching, lecturing, observing, or conducting research. At Millersville, “exchange visitor” is often referred to as “visiting scholar.”

Eligibility Requirements for Exchange Visitors

[22 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) § 41.62(a)]

  • Intent to pursue appropriate activity
  • Intent to return to home country
  • Sufficient funding
  • Appropriate background for program activity
  • Adequate English

Exchange Visitor Categories & Time Limitation

Category Minimum Duration of Stay Maximum Duration of Stay
Professor or Research Scholar 3 weeks 5 years
Short-term Scholar N/A 6 months

Professors and Research Scholars [22 CFR § 62.4(e) & (f)]


Professor and research scholar are two separate J-1 exchange visitor categories, but because they are related, the regulations governing them are contained in the same subsection.

A J-1 “Professor” is defined as an individual primarily teaching, lecturing, observing, or consulting. A professor may also conduct research.

A J-1 “Research Scholar” is defined as an individual primarily conducting research, observing, or consulting in connection with a research project. A research scholar may also teach or lecture.

Duration of stay

An exchange visitor may participate in the Professor or Research Scholar category for a minimum program of 3 weeks to a maximum program of 5 years. The maximum of 5 years is counted from the program start date in SEVIS (the DS-2019 begin date).

Short-Term Scholars [22 CFR § 62.4(b)]


A short-term scholar is defined as a professor, research scholar, specialist, or a person with similar education or accomplishments coming to the U.S. on a short-term visit for the purpose of lecturing, observing, consulting, training, or demonstrating special skills at research institutions, museums, libraries, post-secondary accredited educational institutions, or similar types of institution. Examples include educators, scientists, research fellows, writers, and museum administrators. The short-term scholar may also engage in collaborative research.

Duration of stay

The short-term scholar category is not subject to the three-week minimum length of program requirement. It is therefore an ideal category for programs and visits of short-term duration lasting anywhere from one day to a maximum of six months. A short-term scholar may extend his/her stay up to the six-month maximum or transfer to another J-1 program within that period, but extensions beyond 6 months are not permitted. The maximum of 6 months is counted from the start date on the Form DS-2019.

More Details

The responsibility of hosting a scholar is extensive and we at Global Education aim to provide you with the details you need to do so successfully. To read additional details about immigration pokicies, required documents, and more, please click here.