International Programs Office

Current J-1 Visiting Scholars


Scholars have a 30-day grace period from the end date of your DS-2019 to prepare for your departure. At the end of your stay at ISU, please have your department complete the Departure Notification Form below. This form is required in order for us to update our records and your SEVIS record appropriately.

If you end your program more than 30 days before the DS-2019 end date, you must inform an IPO J-1 advisor and prepare to depart the US. Your DS-2019 is only valid while you are participating in your program, regardless of the end date.

Maintaining J1 Status

  1. Keep your DS-2019 valid
  2. Your DS-2019 must remain valid during your stay, including all dates and financial information. Do not allow your DS-2019 to expire.

  3. Travel Signature
  4. You must have a valid J-1 visa and DS-2019 with a valid travel signature form a J-1 Advisor in IPO if you want to travel internationally. You may obtain a travel signature by dropping off your DS-2019 in the IPO Office. We have a three-day processing time for DS-2019 signatures.

  5. Travel to Canada, Mexico, and the Caribbean
  6. If you visit Canada, Mexico or the Caribbean for fewer than 30 days a valid J-1 or J-2 visa is not required for most individuals, as long as you have a valid I-94.

    • You should not surrender your I-94 card upon entry to these countries if you intend to visit for fewer than 30 days with an expired visa.
    • When using this option do NOT attempt to reapply for a visa while in Canada.
    • For more information on returning to the United States after a visit to Canada with an expired US visa, please see the Department of State website for more information.

    If you need a visa to enter Canada or if you do not know if you need a visa to enter Canada, please visit the Canada Consulate website.

  7. Maintain Health Insurance
  8. J visa holders must maintain health insurance as required by US State Department regulations during your entire stay in the U.S. Minimum health insurance requirements are as follows:

    • Medical benefits of at least $50,000 per accident or illness
    • Repatriation of remains in the amount of $7,500
    • Expenses associated with the medical evacuation of the exchange visitor to his or her home country in the amount of $10,000
    • A deductible not to exceed $500 per accident or illness.
  9. Keep your local address up-to-date with IPO
  10. You must notify IPO of any address changes within 10 days of the change by contacting a J-1 advisor.

  11. Follow employment restrictions
  12. J-1 scholars may NOT accept employment in the US unless specifically authorized in writing. See an IPO J-1 advisor for all J-1 work authorizations.

  13. J-2 Family Member Work Authorizations
  14. Family members in J-2 status may apply to the US Citizenship and Immigration Service to work in the US after arrival. See an IPO J-1 advisor for more details.

    Extending J-1 Status

    J-1 status for research scholars and professors may be extended for up to 5 years. (Short-Term Scholars are limited to 6 months.) The forms below must be submitted by you and your ISU department to the IPO. Scholars must show proof of meeting minimum funding requirements for the duration of the extension. IPO will then issue you a new DS-2019.

    ISU Departments: To request an extension for a current international scholar, please download and complete the Visiting Scholar Extension Form.