J-1 Academic Training

Academic Training is a type of off-campus work authorization for employment in a student's field of study (does not need to be an “academic” job).  The J-1 student’s program sponsor (the institution that issues the DS-2019) is responsible for granting the authorization with the required recommendation from the student's academic department. Students sponsored by UC Irvine must request Academic Training authorization from the International Center.  Students who are sponsored by institutions other than UC Irvine (such as Fulbright, etc.) should check with that sponsor for information on Academic Training eligibility.

What is Academic Training?

  • is available before or after completion of studies or program

  • can be part-time [20 hours per week or less] during the fall, winter, and spring quarters or full-time during the summer.

  • requires you to have a job offer before you apply.

  • If you will apply for Academic Training for after completion of your studies or program, you must apply  BEFORE the completion of your studies or program. 

  • can be used for paid or unpaid internships or jobs.   However, if it is unpaid, you must show proof of financial support for purposes of extending your DS-2019 beyond the end of your studies or program.

  • allows for more than one job at a time, as long as they are all related to your field of study and separate Academic Training request forms are submitted for each job.  

  • is available for a total of 18 months or for a period equal to the length of the study program, whichever is shorter.  

  • can be extended only for postdoctoral researchers up to a maximum total of 36 months.  Students may apply for the extension up to 6 months prior but before the expiration of their 18-month academic training.  Postdoctoral students who would like to request an extension beyond 18 months should speak with a student advisor at the IC.

  • your job or internship must begin within 30 days of the program completion date.  However, time authorized for Academic Training will begin counting the day after program completion.

How to Apply for J-1 Academic Training

Step 1: Review the J-1 Academic Training Information.

Step 2: Meet with your academic advisor to regarding your plans and to determine your completion date (for those applying for post-completion)

Step 3: Have your academic advisor write a letter recommending the academic training. The letter must include the following:

  • Verify date of completion of degree
  • Goals and objectives of the specific academic training program
  • The location of the academic training, the name and address of the training supervisor, number of hours per week, and dates of the academic training
  • How the academic training relates to the students’ major field of study; and why it is an integral or critical par of the academic program of the student.

Step 4: Obtain an employment offer letter from prospective employer

Step 5: Submit the J-1 Academic Training Application during a Student Employment Hand-In Session on Tuesday, Wednesday or Thursday between 9am-11am to the UCI International Center for review. Allow seven [7] working days for processing.

Step 6: The International Center will issue a new DS-2019 and Employment Authorization Letter.


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