UKIC / International Student & Scholar Services / Hiring/Inviting International Faculty, Staff & Students / Inviting J-1 Candidates

Inviting J-1 Candidates

Inviting a J-1 Scholar to UK

University departments wishing to invite a J-1 Exchange Visitor should follow the steps below. 

To make a request to invite or hire a J-1 exchange visitor, please request access to our immigration software system, iCAT. To request permission, please follow instructions at  Request Access Instructions

Department and/or college requests will continue to be limited to those which have been pre-approved and vetted through appropriate department channels.  Permission will be granted to not more than 2 persons per department.  

Please note that the International Scholar and Student Services office (ISSS) will assess a fee, click here for more information.


  • All questions and documentation should come directly from the department to the J-1 advisor, Marc K. Invergo, located at 205 Bradley Hall. Ph: 859-257-8776 or e-mail at

Steps to inviting J-1 Scholars to campus

Step 1: Determine eligibility for J-1 Status

For assistance in determining eligibility departments should contact the J-1 advisor in order to select the most appropriate J-1 category and/or visa status for the exchange visitor.  A complete list of J categories are available here.

Step 2: Determine English Proficiency

Determine that the candidate has sufficient English skills  (including verbal communication) to undertake your program objectives. This is a regulatory requirement found in 22 CFR 62.10(a)(2). Also, departments should verify that candidate meets the minimum educational requirements: Master’s Degree or a Bachelor’s with extensive experience (at least 10 years) in the relevant field. 

As of January 5, 2015 the U.S. Department of State regulations require that faculty provide proof that an objective measurement was used to determine English language proficiency. 


Step 3: Review Financial Requirements

 The J-1 advisor in ISSS will prepare the DS-2019 and the department will be notified when the documentation packet is ready to be picked up for mailing. Prior to issuing the DS-2019 the J-1 advisor will verify that funding meets the minimum requirements: EV: $22,000; EV/spouse: $28,800; each child an additional $4,700.

Step 4: Submit to UKIC through iCAT

 Electronic submission through the UKIC Immigration software application, iCAT, is now used for all J-1 Exchange Visitor initial requests for the Research Scholar, Professor, Short Term Scholar and Specialist categories.  J-1 Scholar Application Instructions 

Note:  J-1 Student Intern category requests along with J-1 extension requests will continue to be submitted via paper requests.  Please contact Marc Invergo for instructions and documentation to be completed by the department for this category

Reporting Incidents

Per [22 CFR 62.13(d)], All Departments/Hosts are required to report incidents involving J-1 exchange visitors that have or could endanger the health, safety, or welfare of an exchange visitor or otherwise could be expected to bring the Department of State, the Exchange Visitor Program, or the sponsor’s exchange visitor program into notoriety or disrepute.  Examples include, but are not limited to exchange visitor’s death, exchange visitor missing, exchange visitor serious illness or injury, incident involving the criminal justice system, sexually-related incidents or abuse, negative press involving a sponsor’s exchange visitor program, litigation, foreign government involvement, and other situations.  Should an incident occur, please contact Marc K. Invergo at or call 859-257-8776 as soon as possible.

UK Policy Regarding Changes of Status to H1-B

The University of Kentucky has determined that J-1 visa holders are expected to remain in this status for a minimum of two years before the University will sponsor a change of status to H-1B. This requirement is a UK policy, not an immigration regulation. It does not apply in cases where a tenure-track faculty position is being sought with a change of status to H-1B or  O-1 status.


Departments wishing to extend the stay of an Exchange Visitor should submit the "J-1 Scholar Extension" form in iCatat least 30 days in advance of the Exchange Visitor’s DS-2019 expiring. 

Information to be included in request: 

  • JV Account number for the $216 processing fee (fiscal year 2017/2018) 
    • International Student & Scholar Services charges a fee for the processing of a DS-2019 Certificate of 
    • Eligibility for Exchange Visitor (J-1) Status for all J categories, except J-1 students. This fee maybe paid either by the department or the J-1 Exchange Visitor, but payment must be processed through a JV.  (Note:Fees cannot be charged to grants.) 
  • Ending date of extension 
  • Funding amount 
    • Funding must be guaranteed for the specified period of time. It is possible to give an extension for short periods as funding allows. 
  • Funding source 
    • If the funding source is UK, specify the name of the grant. 
    • Other sources must be verified by a statement from the sponsoring organization or bank. 
  • Proof of continued health insurance (including J-2 dependents, if applicable) 
    • If covered by UK-HMO, include a copy of the computer print-out verifying coverage of SOS(Medical Evacuation and Repatriation Insurance). 
    • If covered by Humana insurance, include a copy of an updated E-mail from Humana with the confirmation number. 
    • If other insurance, the Exchange Visitor must complete a form verifying that the coverage meets the UK requirements

PDF icon J-1 Exchange Visitor Invitation Letter