Your organization can recruit, interview and select individuals from other countries to participate in exchange opportunities. IIE will then determine J-1 Exchange Visitor program eligibility and provide a streamlined process of sponsoring: Short Term Scholars, Professors, Research Scholars, Trainees, Specialists, Students- Post-Secondary (College and University) and Teachers to your organization for a unique exchange experience.
IIE and the host organizations must determine whether candidates have adequate English language skills to achieve the stated objectives. Also, it must be confirmed that the Exchange Visitor will not replace full or part-time employees and that the exchange program is not designed to recruit and train aliens for permanent employment in the United States.
Organizations requesting IIE’s services must carefully review the candidate’s vitae, references, publications, objectives and means of providing a mutually beneficial program. The Exchange Visitor and host organization must have compatible program goals.
Exchange Visitors may receive compensation for services rendered at the organizations where the program is to take place. Before non-immigrant visa sponsorship documentation can be issued, IIE must obtain proof that the exchange visitor has financial resources sufficient to meet living expenses.
Acceptable documents include:
- Letter of invitation from the host organization describing exchange opportunities its cultural components
- Letter from the host organization outlining funding to be provided
- Letter of support from the exchange visitors' government
- Letter of support from home employer
- Support from other sources: Proof of personal/family funds: bank statements and/or letters of supports with English translations. Documents of financial resources must confirm available funds are sufficient to adequately support the duration of the exchange program.
Living expenses vary from region to region, however a general estimate of living expenses for one year is $24,000. Exchange Visitors must show an additional $5,000/year if accompanied by a spouse and $3,000/year for each accompanying child.
The purpose of this category is to promote the interchange of knowledge and skills among foreign and American colleagues, this is achieved by providing foreign scholars the opportunity to exchange ideas with their American colleagues, participate in academic and professional programs, confer on common problems and projects and promote professional relationships and communications. - The maximum duration for this program is six (6) months.
The purpose of these categories is to foster the exchange of ideas between American and foreign nationals, the exchange of professors and research scholars promotes interchange, mutual enrichment and linkages between organizations, while providing foreign nationals the opportunity to engage in research, teaching, lecturing, observing, or consulting at research institutions, corporate research facilities, museums, libraries, post-secondary accredited academic institutions, or similar types of institutions in the United States. Participants will have the opportunity to participate actively in cross-cultural activities with Americans, and ultimately to share with their communities their experiences and increased knowledge of the United States and their substantive fields. - The maximum duration for these programs is five (5) calendar years.
The primary objective of this category is to enhance the skills and expertise of exchange visitors in their occupational fields through participation in structured and guided work-based training program. The aim is to improve participants' knowledge of American techniques, methodologies and expertise. Such training is also intended to increase participants' understanding of American culture and society and to enhance Americans' knowledge of foreign cultures and skills through an open interchange of ideas between participants and their American associates. - The maximum duration for this category is eighteen (18) months.
Agriculture, Forestry and Fishing
Arts and Culture
Ed, Soc. Science, Lib. Science, Counseling, Soc. Services
Hospitality and Tourism
Information Media and Communications
Management, Business, Commerce and Finance
Engineering, Architecture, Sciences, Math and Industry
The purpose of this category is to promote the interchange of knowledge and skills among foreign and American specialists, who are defined as experts in a field of specialized knowledge, or skills and who visits the United States for the purpose of observing, consulting, or demonstrating their special skills. It does so by providing foreign specialists the opportunity to observe American institutions and methods of practice in their professional fields, and to share their specialized knowledge with their American colleagues. The exchange of specialists promotes mutual enrichment, and furthers linkages among scientific institutions, government agencies, museums, corporations, libraries, and similar types of institutions. Such exchanges also enable visitors to better understand American culture and society and enhance American knowledge of foreign cultures and skills. This category is intended for exchanges with experts in such areas, for example, as mass media communication, environmental science, youth leadership, international academic exchange, museum exhibitions, labor law, public administration, and library science. - The maximum duration for this category is twelve (12) months.
Student- Post-Secondary (College and University)
This category provides foreign students the opportunity to study at a degree-granting post-secondary accredited academic institution. Students may participate in degree and non-degree programs. Non-degree programs - students must be engaged full time in a prescribed course of study in a non-degree program of up to 24 months duration conducted by a post-secondary accredited academic institution.
IIE sponsors exchange visitors under the J-1 visa "teacher" category to teach in U.S. primary and secondary accredited schools. Participants are employed full-time directly by the host school or school district up to a maximum of three (3) years, but may not permanently replace full-time U.S. teachers. The program serves to provide international teachers with experience teaching in a U.S. academic environment while enriching U.S. schools with high quality international teachers.
Positions must be temporary in nature, exchange programs are not designed to recruit and train aliens for permanent employment in the United States and they shall not exceed the permitted duration of stay as stipulated by Federal Regulations.
Participants must return to their home countries and share their experiences with their professional and academic communities.
The FLTP is a professional development exchange program. Trainees will have the opportunity to enhance their teaching career through participation in a structured training program. The FLTP aims to improve the participant’s knowledge of American teaching techniques and methodologies, at the same time they will serve as Cultural Ambassadors.
Role of Participants
IIE provides participants in the FLT Program, both trainees and institutions, full administrative support throughout the academic year. IIE assumes responsibility for preparing the Terms of Appointment (which serve as the contract between the candidate and the host institution), completing all necessary visa documentation, and providing candidates with orientation materials (i.e. housing, assignments, insurance and immigration issues). Additionally, IIE supervises and monitors teaching trainees throughout the academic year.
Trainees are assigned diverse duties at their host institutions and are not limited to working exclusively in a formal classroom setting. The ability of the teaching assistants to engage their students informally is quite often the key to successful language learning; therefore, faculty sponsors often program extracurricular activities into the teaching assistants’ work schedules such as sponsoring community lectures, hosting social events, and leading conversation groups. These types of activities expose Americans to other cultures and serve to fulfill IIE's mission of promoting mutual understanding among nations.
Selection of Participant
Your institution will receive a panel of 4-5 candidates that IIE determines match the profile you have requested. Candidates are frequently submitted to more than one host institution, in order to provide them with a multiplicity of opportunities for placement. Your institution performs the final review of the candidates and determine who you believe would be the most successful FLT for your school. Your institution submits the ranking to IIE. IIE subsequently notifies our overseas partners of a candidate’s final selection for the program.
All trainees must receive a stipend. Housing and meals arrangements will vary from institution to institutions. Some may provide full room and board as part of the award offer, while others may expect the trainee to pay for these services out of the stipend money. If trainees are housed with a host family, most often, they will not be responsible to pay for the housing or for meals. Trainees are assigned a work load consisting of teaching, assist teaching, leading conversation groups and related activities. Trainees may not be assigned a workload that exceeds 32 hours per week. Additionally, trainees are required to work exclusively at the host institution indicated on their visa documentation.
Training Programs are for one academic year. One of the main objectives of the Foreign Language Trainee Program is to offer to as many teachers as possible the opportunity to spend a year in the United States. Since this number is small by nature, renewal would be unfair to the many highly qualified candidates seeking these relatively rare posts.
U.S. Government regulations governing the J-1 Exchange Visitor visa status require all exchange visitors to have health insurance coverage. This coverage must be in effect during the period of the exchange program in the US, and must meet the minimum requirements.
Insurance in the United States is primarily a private industry with a variety of options for coverage and cost. The U.S. Department of State has established minimum requirements for insurance that are designed to protect the exchange visitors and their families. Insurance Requirements (from 22 CFR 62.14) follow:
A. Sponsors shall require each exchange visitors to have insurance in effect which covers the exchange visitor for sickness or accident during the period of time that an exchange visitor participates in the sponsor's exchange visitor program. Minimum coverage shall provide:
(1) Medical benefits of at least $50,000 per accident or illness;
(2) Repatriation of remains in the amount of $7,500;
(3) Expenses associated with medical evacuation of the exchange visitor to his or her home country in the amount of $10,000; and
(4) A deductible not to exceed $500 per accident or illness.
B. An insurance policy secured to fulfill the requirements of this section:
(1) May require a waiting period for pre-existing conditions which is reasonable as determined by current industry standards;
(2) May include provision for co-insurance under the terms of which the exchange visitor may be required to pay up to 25 percent of the covered benefits per accident or illness;
C. Policy must be underwritten by an insurance corporation having an A.M. Best rating of "A- or above" or have; an Insurance Solvency International, Ltd. (ISI) rating of "A-" or above; a Weiss Research, Inc. rating of B+ or above. It is your responsibility to confirm with the insurance company that they meet these criteria.
IIE offers a private insurance program that meets the J-1 health insurance coverage regulations at affordable rates.
IIE's fees for our service are competitive and fair. As a not-for profit institution with a mission of building leadership skills and enhancing the capacity of individuals and organizations to address local and global challenges, we remain true to our reputation for excellence and maintaining integrity in all services. Payments of the program fees must be made before documents will be mailed. Expedited service is available.
Fees vary by duration of exchange program. Please contact the Program Officer for exact rates.