J-1 Scholars Frequently Asked Questions

You can find the steps to the J-1 visitor process here. Our office also has this information available in the form of a J-1 checklist so you can follow along as you go. Please contact our office at international@bgsu.edu if you would like a copy of the J-1 checklist.

The first step in the process is to inform your college and get approval for the visitor. The Office of Sponsored Programs and Research (OSPR) will also need to be contacted for restricted party screening to clear the visitor prior to any offers or invitations being made.

Yes, regardless of the nature of the exchange visit all potential J-1 exchange visitors must be cleared by OSPR.

No, do not send the hard copy of the invitation letter yet. All documents sent prior to the DS-2019 being created should be emailed soft copies. Once the DS-2019 is created our office will let you know it is time to send hard copies.

Yes, in order to create the DS-2019 form the exact start and end date of an intended exchange must be provided. Depending on the J-1 visa type, the program end date may be extended but for the initial visa interview a clear end date must be indicated.

Short-term Scholars are permitted to stay for up to six months, but the stay cannot be extended.

Professors and Research Scholars are typically issued a one-year visa.  The stay can then be extended YEARLY for a total of five years. 

Scholars have a 30-day grace period in which they are are permitted to remain the US following the end date on the DS-2019.

Yes, there are costs associated with the application and filing of the DS-2019 record.  Please contact us at international@bgsu.edu for specific questions about these fees.

A J-1 exchange visitor can apply for a visa up to 120 days before the start of their program. The start of their program is the date indicated on their DS-2019 form.

Within the first week of arrival to the US, all visitors need to contact International Programs & Partnerships (international@bgsu.edu) to schedule a mandatory J-1 orientation. 

Some exchange visitors are required to spend a minimum of at least two years in their home country before they are eligible to apply for an H-1B work visa or other specific visa types before returning to the United States. If you have specific questions regarding a potential or current exchange visitor who may be subject to this residency requirement, please contact our office to discuss the case.

When the program ends for a J-1 professor or research scholar, the participant is unable to return on this category of J-1 visa for two years to prevent repeat participation. This does not bar the individual from returning on a different type of visa. If you have specific questions regarding a potential or current exchange visitor who may be subject to the 24-month bar, please contact our office to discuss the case.

Updated: 06/08/2022 03:18PM