J-1 Sponsorship

This information is intended for sponsoring departments at the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) that are interested in inviting or currently working with J-1 exchange visitors.

The UMB Exchange Visitor Program allows for nonclinical instruction, research, and educational exchange. As a J-1 EV Program sponsor, UMB is obligated to comply with U.S. Department of State procedures and regulations. The J-1 program is divided into categories that correspond to the purpose of the visit and the proposed activities. J-1 sponsorship cannot be used for individuals in staff or tenured faculty positions at UMB.

J-1 categories and eligibility

Any J-1 Short-Term Scholar, Research Scholar, and Professor who will NOT be on UMB payroll must complete the Visiting Scientist/Scholar Agreement and submit it to the Office of Research and Development (ORD) for approval. No staff titles are eligible for J-1 sponsorship. Departments should consult their dean’s office for an outline of UMB appointments and corresponding titles. UMB is approved to sponsor the following categories:

  • J-1 Professor and Research Scholar

    The J-1 Research Scholar and Professor categories are intended for qualified international professors and researchers to come to UMB for temporary, non-tenure-track appointments. This category is only utilized for Faculty and Fellow appointments. UMB sponsors instructors and researchers who have obtained the equivalent of a U.S. bachelor’s degree or higher. UMB does not have authorization to sponsor EVs who will be involved in direct patient care. Clinical fellowships and residency programs are not within UMB’s scope of J-1 EV sponsorship.

    J-1s sponsored by UMB may NOT engage in ANY patient contact.

    Departments wishing to bring undergraduate students to the University of Maryland, Baltimore to engage in research-related activities should consult the Student Intern category.

    All J-1 Research Scholars admitted to the United States are automatically subject to the "24-month bar" on repeat Research Scholar participation.

  • J-1 Short-term Scholar

    The J-1 Short-Term Scholar (STS) category is intended for qualified international professors and researchers to come to UMB for temporary, non-tenure-track appointments lasting no longer than six months. The objectives of the Short-Term Scholar category are similar to those of the Professor/Research Scholar categories; however, sponsorship in the Short-Term Scholar category cannot be extended beyond six months.

    This category is only utilized for Faculty and Fellow appointments.

    The "12-month" and "24-month" bars do NOT apply to the Short-Term Scholar category.

  • J-1 Student Intern

    Participation in the Student Intern category is available only to international students currently enrolled and pursuing a degree at a postsecondary academic institution outside the United States. The U.S. internship must "fulfill the educational objectives for his/her current degree program at his/her home institution."

    Student Interns may participate in a student internship program for up to 12 months for each international degree/major. As the J-1 Research Scholar and Short-Term Scholar categories are unavailable for any international who has not yet earned a bachelor’s degree, the J-1 Student Intern category would be most appropriate for visiting undergraduate students.

    See the J-1 Student Intern Request in Sunapsis. Become a Sunapsis User.

  • J-1 Student

    J-1 students must be fully admitted to the University of Maryland, Baltimore through the appropriate admissions office to pursue degree-seeking or nondegree-seeking study.

    For more information, see J-1 Students.

    In addition to being fully admitted, they must meet one of the following criteria:

    1. They are coming pursuant to an exchange agreement that the University of Maryland, Baltimore (or a school of UMB) has signed with a foreign institution of higher education, OR
    2. Their studies are primarily funded from the U.S. government, their home country government, an international organization, a bi-national commission of the United States and a foreign country, or the University of Maryland, Baltimore.


Initial J-1 request process

Need help selecting a start date? Review this resource to figure out by when our office needs to receive a request in order for a scholar to arrive by the start date. J-1 Start Date and Request Submission Timeline


There are two request types in Sunapsis. One for J-1 Scholars and another for J-1 Student Interns. See categories and eligibility, above, to determine which request type fits. See Using Sunapsis for detailed instructions on submitting either request.

Once a full request is submitted in Sunapsis, allow up to 10 business days for processing.

Financial Requirements

Before the OIS can issue the J visa documents, DS-2019s, we must see sufficient funding to cover the J-1 and any accompanying J-2 dependents. Dependents are classified as a spouse and/or children under the age of 21.

Funding required to qualify for J-1 sponsorship:

  • Minimum of $27,600 per year of J-1 sponsorship
  • Minimum of $7,200 for accompanying spouse
  • Minimum of $6,600 for each accompanying child

English Language Proficiency Requirement

The Department of State requires that all incoming scholars possess "sufficient proficiency in the English language, as determined by an objective measurement of English language proficiency, successfully to participate in his or her program and to function on a day-to-day basis."

Scholars can demonstrate English proficiency in several ways.

  • Being a citizen of a country or earning a degree where the official language is English (Review the list: J-1: Exemptions from English Language Proficiency Test or Interview)
  • Taking a recognized English language test and achieving the noted minimum score; test results may not be more than two years old at the time of submission of the J-1 request.
    • TOEFL (minimum 80 on the internet based test, 550 on the paper based test)
    • IELTS (minimum 7.0 total bandwidth score)
  • Being interviewed by the UMB inviting department and completing the English Proficiency Interview Form; the interview must be conducted by someone who has been trained by our office. Contact Gina Dreyer for access to the training.

Arrival procedures

Check in with the OIS
All new J-1s at UMB must follow the Sunapsis check-in procedures when they arrive in the U.S.; scholars will receive an email with instructions. If the J-1 fails to check in with the OIS, they risk automatic inactivation of the J-1 SEVIS record.

J-1 Orientation
The OIS offers J-1 orientation monthly to new scholars at UMB. This orientation program assists new J-1 scholars in acclimating to the University, Baltimore, and the United States. Topics covered include applicable immigration regulations, office and University services, concepts of cross-cultural communication, housing information, and community resources. The goal of this program is to provide opportunities for new J-1 scholars to meet each other and the OIS staff members and to give them information they need to settle and be productive in their activities at the University.

J-1s can register to attend orientation through the Elm Calendar. This also is a great resource to review the other programs offered by the OIS and other offices on the UMB campus.

Notification of Delay
If a J-1 will be unable to arrive to UMB by the start date on the DS-2019, please contact the Office of International Services as soon as possible. By notifying the OIS of the expected delay in arrival, we can amend the incoming J-1's start date to ensure the SEVIS record will remain in good standing.

J-1s Not Employed by UMB
If a J-1 scholar is joining your department but will not be employed by UMB, you will need to complete the affiliate process for the individual to get a One Card on campus. The OIS is not responsible for completing this process.