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Academic Training for J-1 Students

A sponsor may give a J-1 student permission to accept employment related to their field of study. This employment, called Academic Training, may take place anywhere in the US and can be either before and/or after the student finishes their studies. College and University students who are pursuing or recently completed STEM-related studies.  The maximum total length of their academic training is capped at 36 months for STEM-related studies and 18 months for all others. However, the training  may not last longer than the time the student spent taking classes.* Students should meet with an International Student Advisor to discuss how many months of Academic Training may be available for specific circumstances.

The student must have a job offer before getting permission for Academic Training. The training is then authorized for that specific job. If a student wishes to change to a different job, they must again apply to their sponsor for permission.

Students expecting to do Academic Training at the end of their program must complete all application paperwork before their DS-2019 expires. For more information about Academic Training, contact us at

J-1 students should follow the following procedures to be authorized for employment under academic training:

  1. Fill out the Academic Training Request—Student Form.
  2. Obtain the Academic Training Request—Advisor’s Form from their academic advisor.
  3. Obtain an Employer Letter from their future employer.
  4. Provide proof of funding to show they will be funded financially until the end of the J-1 program (including the academic training period).
  5. Provide a copy of their current DS-2019.

Once CGE receives these documents, a CGE advisor will update the student’s SEVIS record with Academic Training authorization, extend and issue a new DS-2019, write an employment letter, and if necessary write a Social Security letter.

At the end of the Academic Training period, the student should fill out an Academic Training Evaluation form and submit it to CGE. Please direct any questions about academic training to David Lawson.


*Exception: Students who receive a PhD may be granted up to 36 months of Academic Training.