J-1 Exchange Visitor Visa

The purpose of the Exchange Visitor Program and J visa is to allow persons to participate in short term programs in the United States.  At Fredonia, individuals coming on a J-1 visa may be exchange students, students participating in a short term study program, or visiting international faculty.  These individuals have no intention of immigrating to the United States and are participating in the program solely for the exchange of culture, and also must return to their home country following the conclusion of the program.

The Office of International Education (OIE) issues the SEVIS DS-2019 for those admitted to an approved J-1 program.  Participants must have a valid DS-2019 and passport, as well as sufficient financial support, in order to apply for a J-1 visa.  Please use this webpage for information on the J-1 visa before and during your program.

More information for J-1 participants can be found at http://j1visa.state.gov/participants/.

Visa Fees and Application

Step 1: Obtain DS-2019
After the individual has been accepted or approved by Fredonia, the Office of International Education will issue the SEVIS DS-2019 document and mail it, along with an acceptance letter, to the individual.  

Step 2: Pay SEVIS Fee
Using the SEVIS DS-2019 document, the individuals will then pay the $180 SEVIS fee and visa processing fee online.  For detailed instructions on payment of the SEVIS fee, individuals can watch an interactive payment tutorial online.  To pay the SEVIS fee, please visit www.fmjfee.com.

Step 3: Schedule Visa Appointment & Prepare for Interview
Individuals must appear in person at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate to apply for their J-1 visa.  To find please the closest U.S. Embassy or Consulate, please visit http://www.usembassy.gov/.  At the individual's visa appointment at the foreign U.S. Embassy, they are required to prove their eligibility for the J-1 visa.  Individuals should come prepared with correct documentation and also should be prepared for a brief interview with a U.S. representative.  For more information about documents and visa interviews, please visit: http://j1visa.state.gov/participants/how-to-apply/interviews-documents/

Visa Requirements

Two Year Home Country Physical Presence Requirement (Section 212 (e))
Individuals from certain countries or studying in specific fields may be subject to the Two-Year Home-Country Physical Presence Requirement (Section 212(e)).  Individuals who are subject to Section 212(e) will have it noted on their U.S. visa.  For more information about Section 212(e) please visit the US State Department website.

Health Insurance Requirement
The State University of New York contracts with HTH Worldwide Health Insurance to provide medical, evacuation and repatriation insurance coverage for $575 per semester.   Exchange visitors are able to purchase HTH Insurance through the Office of International Education for the duration of their program.  HTH Insurance meets the minimum requirements outlined by the Department of State.  

  • Medical benefits of at least $100,000 per accident or illness,  Repatriation of remains in the amount of $25,000
  • Expenses associated with the medical evacuation of exchange visitors to his or her home country in the amount of$50,000, Deductibles not to exceed $500 per accident or illness.
  • A policy underwritten by an insurance carrier with:
    • an A.M. Best rating of ‘‘A-’’ or above;
    • a McGraw Hill Financial/Standard & Poor’s Claims paying Ability rating of ‘‘A-’’ or above;
    • a Weiss Research, Inc. rating of ‘‘B+’’ or above;
    • a Fitch Ratings, Inc. rating of ‘‘A-’’ or above;
  • a Moody’s Investor Services rating of ‘‘A3’’ or above.

To purchase HTH Insurance, please visit Fredonia’s online store in TouchNet.

When on Campus

Visa Duration: Individuals are able to enter and leave the United States 30 days prior to/after the dates listed on their visa.  

Arrival: Individuals traveling to the U.S. on a J-1 visa are required to submit a copy of their U.S. visa to the Office of International Education.  OIE is located in LoGrasso Hall.  For student exchange visitors, OIE will make copies of your U.S. student visa during orientation week; for scholars, OIE will reach out to you directly to set up a time to meet.  

Orientation: All J-1 exchange visitors are required to take part in an orientation program that outlines visa requirements and procedures.  For students, this information is covered during orientation week.

Documents: When on campus, J-1 participants should keep their visa documents and passport in a safe location as they will need them at various times throughout the semester.

Traveling:  J-1 Exchange Visitors should carry their passport and DS-2019 with them  If individuals plan to travel outside of the United States, they will need to have their DS-2019 signed by a Responsible Officer or Alternate Responsible Officer.  Information for the campus RO and AROs are listed below.   Signatures are valid for 6 months. Exchange visitors must have their passport, DS-2019 (signed), and admission letter with them for re-entry to the United States.  

Responsible Officer
Dr. Naomi Baldwin
7 LoGrasso Hall

Alternate Responsible Officers
Erin Willis
7 LoGrasso Hall

Jennifer Costa
511 Maytum Hall