Academic Training Overview

Academic Training is off-campus work authorization for J-1 students to supplement their academic program in the United States before or after completion of their degree. Academic training involves “paid employment.”

J-1 students are allowed to work up to 18 months after their degree completion. If the student completed a doctorate degree, they may qualify for up to 36 months of academic training. Part-time employment for Academic training counts against the 18 to 36 month limit, the same as full-time Employment. Earning more than one degree does not increase the amount of academic training time.

Exchange students:

  • One semester of study qualifies for four months of academic training.
  • One year of study qualifies for nine months of academic training.
  • The J-1 student must obtain and present a written offer of appropriate employment to the RO or ARO prior to the end of his/her program.
  • The students’ primary purpose in the U.S. must be to study rather than to participate in Academic Training.


  • Students must be in good academic standing at the school named on the DS-2019.
  • The proposed employment must be directly related to the student’s major field of study.
  • Throughout academic training, the student must maintain your ability to stay in the U.S.
  • The student must maintain health insurance coverage for his- or herself and any J-2 dependents throughout the academic training.

Forms required:

  • Current DS-2019
  • I-94 card
  • valid passport
  • letter from the academic advisor stating the date the student completed their program of study
  • written job offer, and
  • written letter of approval from the Responsible Officer (RO).

The J-1 student must obtain and present a written offer of appropriate employment to the RO prior to the end of his/her program.

The J-1 student must also obtain written approval from the academic dean or advisor stating the following information:

  • the position meets the goals and objectives of the specific training program
  • a description of the training program
  • location of the position,
  • the name, address, and telephone number of training supervisor
  • number of hours to be worked per week, and dates of training;
  • an explanation of how the training relates to the student’s major field of study; an explanation of why it is an integral or critical part of the academic program of the exchange visitor.
  • The student should take the employment letter, written approval from his/her department, existing DS-2019 form, passport, and I-94 card to the Responsible Officer in the Office of Global Affairs. The Responsible Officer will evaluate the Academic Training program and decide whether it is warranted and appropriate.  If the Academic Training is approved, the RO will give written approval and process a new DS-2019 to reflect the approved period of Academic Training.

It is recommended that the student set an appointment with Katie Erickson, Assistant Director for Education Abroad to learn more about the process.