Some people who want to come to the United States want to come here to learn a trade or get an education. Others might want to come to experience the culture. For these people, they will need to get a visa through the J-1 visa program, which is also known as the Exchange Visitor Program. There are several factors that people who are interested in this program should know before applying. Our Texas readers might be interested in some points related to this visa program.
In order to apply for a J-1 visa, the applicant must already be accepted into an exchange program that is recognized by the program. The person must apply at the U.S. Consulate or Embassy in their home country. They must also pay a fee to be placed in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System.
People who are applying for a J-1 visa will likely have to go through an interview as part of the application process. Filling out a nonimmigrant visa application and providing a photo are also necessary. During this interview, the person will have to provide various documents, such as a form DS-2019, a passport and a form DS-7002. Other documents are likely to be required, so applicants should seek guidance to determine what is required.
When some applicants are approved, they will be subjected to a 2-year home-country physical presence requirement at the end of their program. This is to give them a chance to share their new knowledge in their home country. Some people might be able to get a waiver for this requirement. Working with someone familiar with this program might help them to learn how to seek a waiver.
Source: U.S. Department of State, Bureau of Consular Affairs, "Exchange Visitor Visa" accessed Mar. 20, 2015