3. Make an appointment for a visa interview
Has the visa fee been paid? Then you have the opportunity on the CGI Stanley website to arrange an embassy appointment in Frankfurt, Munich or Berlin. Appointments can also be made via the CGI Stanley hotline. The online procedure is more practical.
The following information is required to arrange the appointment: the passport number, the CGI reference number and the ten-digit barcode on the DS-160 confirmation page.
Sometimes there are waiting times when making appointments. You can see how long the process will take on this website.
Prepare the embassy appointment
J-1 applicants must bring various documents with them to the embassy interview:
- Passport valid for the entire duration of the stay (it must be in good condition and have a blank page for the visa)
- Original signed Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor (J-1) Status (DS-2019)
- If applicable, training / internship placement plan (DS-7002)
- Printed confirmation page of the DS-160 form
- Printed appointment confirmation
- Colored passport photo, preferably on photo paper
Other documents can also be helpful. Bringing it with you is completely voluntary and not absolutely necessary, because if, contrary to expectations, the embassy requires one of the documents, you can also send it via scan:
- Certificate of enrollment
- Documents showing that the applicant will leave the United States upon completion of the program: a permanent tenancy, a pension insurance and / or proof of an existing employment relationship
- Proof of funding for the stay in the USA: Scholarship and BAföG certificates and / or a signed bank certificate
- Documents for academic training: Abitur certificate, transcript of records, results of language tests or admission tests
Even family members who accompany the applicant to the United States, require certain documents. This includes its own DS 2019 form. Applicants should study the relevant provisions in good time.
Appointment to the embassy and issuing of the visa
You don’t need to appear half an hour in advance for your visa interview. The time of the appointment does not indicate the start of the conversation, but only the entry into the embassy and the start of the entire procedure.
The so-called proof of commitment plays an important role in the visa interview. Applicants should be able to explain to the consular officer why staying in the US is advantageous for them at this point in time. In addition, it is often a question of the applicant’s ties to the home country or further planning after returning from the USA, a country located in North America according to iamhigher.
It often helps to think about the content you want to convey at home before the conversation and to formulate it in fluent English.
If the visa interview is successful, applicants will receive their passport including J-1 visa for studying in the USA after five to seven working days by post. It is advisable to check the visa for errors directly.
Entry and exit and validity of the J-1 visa
With a J-1 visa for studying in the USA, it is possible to enter the USA no earlier than 30 days before the start of the program. There is an option to stay in the United States for an additional 30 days after completing the program. It is advisable to only use the time for domestic travel, otherwise there may be problems with re-entry. Traveling to other countries such as Mexico or Canada while the program is running is usually not a problem. As this requires a note on the DS 2019 form, prior consultation is necessary.
Occasionally, a J-1 visa to study in the United States will be issued for a period longer than the program period. However, a J-1 visa is only valid in combination with a current DS-2019 form. Thus, for example, it is not possible to enter as a tourist with a visa.
By the way: A J-1 visa is linked to a specific internship or a certain company in the USA. It is not allowed to do a second internship at another organization at the same time. For a second visa application, an exit is often required.
Work permit with J-1 visa to study in the USA
If you have a J-1 visa to study in the USA, you are only allowed to work within the framework of the respective exchange program. In addition, you are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week on campus.
There is also the option of applying for so-called academic training from the program sponsor or from the US university. A subject related to the course is a prerequisite for approval. It is often necessary to study two semesters in advance at the relevant US university. Interested parties should inform themselves comprehensively in advance about the exact provisions.