Academic Training

Academic Training is training related to your field of study. It can be a job, internship, research position, cooperative education position, or other opportunity to obtain experience related to your field of study. If the position is off campus, you must *always* apply for academic training authorization, whether you are a current student or graduating soon. If the position is on campus, you could apply for academic training authorization to extend your J-1 status to accommodate research or another learning activity related to your studies.

  • You must request Academic Training authorization from ISSS before starting your internship or job.
  • The training may be paid or unpaid.
  • You can apply for Academic Training authorization either during your studies or for a training position that will begin no later than 30 days after completion of studies. If you apply for Academic Training for a position to begin after your studies, you must still submit your application before your current DS-2019 expires.
  • Employment for Academic Training has an overall limit of 18 months, which includes training both before and after completion of studies. However, the total training period may not exceed the amount of time spent in the full course of study.
  • For postdoctoral training, the overall limit is 36 months.
  • All Academic Training is counted as full-time, even if employment is on a part-time basis.

How to Apply for Academic Training Authorization

Step 1: Find an Academic Training opportunity.

This could be a job, internship, cooperative education position, volunteer position, etc. It must be closely related to your studies at UO. The training position must start either pre-completion of your program or no later than 30 days after you complete your program.

Step 2: Submit the Following Documents to ISSS

  1. A copy of your job/internship offer
  2. Completed Academic Training Request Form (Note: Exchange students do not need to provide a letter from an academic advisor; an ISSS advisor will take care of this)

Your ISSS advisor will review your application and, if approved, will issue a new DS-2019 notated with your Academic Training authorization. Allow 7-10 business days for ISSS processing.

Authorization to Work

A Social Security Number

To put you on the payroll, an employer must have your Social Security number, which you can obtain by applying for a Social Security card. If you do not already have a Social Security Number, take your passport (if you are Canadian, you may use another form of photo-bearing identification), your I-94 Arrival Record, the DS-2019, and the J-1 Responsible Officer's written work authorization to an office of the Social Security Administration. Your Social Security card may be stamped "Valid Employment only with DHS approval." In the case of J-1 "Academic Training," this stamp means that the Social Security card is valid for working only if accompanied by a properly completed DS-2019 and a valid I-94 Arrival Record.

Form I-9 Employment Eligibility Verification

When you begin work, you and your employer must complete Form I-9 which requires you to document your identity and work authorization according to directions on the back of the form. Of the various items acceptable as documentation, you may find that the most convenient combination is your passport (or other photo-bearing identification if you are Canadian), I-94 Arrival Record, the DS-2019, and the J-1 Responsible Officer's written work authorization. Your employer, who keeps the Form I-9 on file, may make copies of the documents you submit and should return your original documents to you. Form I-9 is date specific and must be updated any time that you receive a renewal of your permission for "Academic Training."

Social Security and other Taxes

Social Security Taxes

In general, as a J-1 student, you will be exempt from Social Security (F.I.C.A.) taxes for your first five (5) years in the United States, as long as you continue to declare non-resident status for tax purposes (see Internal Revenue Service Publication 519, "U.S. Tax Guide for Aliens.")

Federal, State, and Local Income Taxes

Unless you qualify under a tax treaty between the United States and your home government, your earnings as a J-1 student will be subject to applicable federal, state and local income taxes, and employers are required by law to withhold those taxes from your paychecks. By April 15 of each year, you must file a federal income tax return and a "Required Statement" covering the prior calendar year to determine whether you owe more taxes or if you have a refund coming.

Note of Caution!

J-1 students are eligible for a variety of work opportunities in the United States, but employment without proper authorization is a serious violation of status. Remember that before starting any kind of employment, you first must consult your J-1 Responsible Officer, whose written approval is necessary in advance. This information is adapted from material produced by NAFSA: Association of International Educators.

Rights and Protections

If you encounter any problems at your workplace, know that you have rights and can get help. The website below informs you of your rights as a nonimmigrant visa holder in certain employment- and education-based categories. The U.S. government created this pamphlet at the prompting of the William Wilberforce Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (Public Law 110-457), which reaffirms and strengthens the U.S. government’s commitment to fight human trafficking and labor abuses. Visit the U.S Department of State's Rights and Protections page for details in your own language.