Inviting a J-1 Scholar to UCI
The information is for an academic department that wishes to invite an international scholar to conduct research or teach at UCI. Below are the steps for inviting a new scholar to UCI. Please note all J-1 initial requests must be submitted to the International Center through inter-campus mail or hand delivery. The processing time for a new DS-2019 document is about 15 business days from the time a complete request is submitted to the International Center.
Step 1: Determine if the scholar is eligible for J-1 sponsorship by reviewing the listed titles below [Series; refers to the ranks or levels within the title series]:
- Visiting Scholar
- Visiting Graduate
- Visiting Undergraduate
- Visiting Professor Series
- Visiting Professional Researcher Series
- Visiting Project Scientist Series
- Project Scientist Series
- Specialist Series
- Professional Research Series
- Adjunct Professor Series
- Junior Specialist [job description must require a minimum of a bachelors degree]
- Postdoctoral Scholars
- Staff Research Associate II, and above
Step 2: The UCI host department will attest to the English proficiency of the J-1 scholar using the English Language Proficiency Certification Form.The department may choose from one of the three options on the form in order to certify that the J-1 scholar is proficient in the English language. This form should then be included with the other forms listed in Steps 4 and 5 below.
Step 3: The UCI host department will prepare a Department Invitation or Offer Letter and send to the scholar. Once the letter has been sent to the scholar and the position has been accepted, a copy of the letter will be provided to the International Center together with the other forms listed in Steps 4 and 5 below. Per updated U.S. Department of State regulations, the letter should include (but is not limited to), the following details:
- Academic appointment title
- Dates of the appointment
- Department administrative contact person and contact information
- Job duties
- Number of working hours
- Wages and compensation (if none, please mention that no compensation will be offered)
- Insurance costs. Please mention whether or not the scholar will be offered health insurance benefits:
- If UCI benefits, include a benefits guide, or employee cost chart, with offer letter and mention it as an enclosure or attachment to letter.
- If no UCI benefits, you may include, for example: “You will be required to obtain health insurance benefits that meet the minimum requirements of the J-1 program. Costs and instructions for enrolling in the UC Irvine Visiting Scholar Injury and Sickness Insurance Plan can be found on the UCI International Center website at www.ic.uci.edu/scholars/J-1/healthinsurance.php
- Itemized list of all fees charged to scholar by department (if none, please mention that no fees will be charged to scholar)
Step 4: The prospective scholar must complete Form A, attach a copy of their passport biographical page, and send it to their host UCI department. If the scholar will be bringing dependents, a completed Dependent Request Form, with copies of each dependent’s passport biographical page, must also be sent with Form A.
Step 5: The UCI host department will complete Form B, AP-21, AP-PX1 or AP-VS1 [signed at department chair level], J-1 Physician's Form [if the scholar is a M.D.], Scholar Recharge Form, and send or drop-off a complete J packet to the International Center [Zot Code: 5255].
Step 6: A DS-2019 visa document will be issued and mailed to the new scholar. The scholar will take this document to apply for a J-1 visa stamp.
Step 7 [if applicable]: The host UCI department is required to inform the IC if the scholar cannot arrive by the start date listed on the DS-2019. The new start date must be reported in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System [SEVIS]. Failure to report this date may affect the scholar’s entry into the U.S. in J-1 status and participation in the J-1 Exchange Visitor program to do research/teach at UC Irvine.
Step 8: The scholar will need to complete New Scholar Check-In at the IC upon arrival to the U.S.