Student Immigration Definitions

Obtaining J-1 Exchange Visitor
Student Category Status at Columbia

Transfer of J-1 Supervision

Change of Status to F-1

Potential Delays in Visa Issuance


Student Tax Information

Message for Canadian Students

Maintaining J-1 Status

DS-2019 Recertification

Health Insurance Overview for J-1 Students

J-1 Travel Information

DHS Information on Arrival Problems

J-1 Extension of Stay (Current Program)

J-1 Extension of Stay to Begin New Program

J-1 Work Opportunities

J-1 On-Campus Work Request

J-1 Academic Training

Employment Authorization for J-2
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J-1 Leave of Absence, Suspension or Withdrawal

Student Departure Information

Home Country Residency Requirement

Reduced Course Load Request

Address Change Form

Work Opportunities for J-1 Students

An exchange visitor (J-1) visa holder must obtain permission from his or her visa supervisor (sponsor) before beginning to work either part-time during the academic year or full-time during vacation periods. Permission for such employment is subject to the review and approval of your exchange visitor program sponsor, who in turn must follow the guidelines of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the United States Department of State (DOS). Columbia University's J-1 program for students (P-1-00381) is administered by the International Students and Scholars Office (ISSO), 524 Riverside Drive and the International Affairs Office (IAO). If you are under the visa supervision of another exchange visitor program (e.g., IIE, AMIDEAST, etc.) you should contact your program sponsor for instructions on how to proceed.

The following is a list of all opportunities to obtain authorization to work in the U.S. if you are in J-1 student immigration status. Each category may allow for authorization under different circumstances and at different times during your stay in the U.S. For detailed information on a particular category, please click on the subject heading.

On-Campus Work - Full-time students are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week during the academic year. On-campus employment means simply that you are paid by Columbia University or working at a University location with an employer that is providing services to students, such as the Bookstore. On-campus employment requires an I-9 Employment Verification Authorization form to be completed by you in advance of beginning work.

Off-Campus Work Based on Financial Need - Students who have been in J-1 status for one academic year and who are experiencing extreme financial difficulties due to unforeseen changes that severely affect their financial resources may apply for work permission. Authorization is given by the ISSO.

Academic Training - This is defined as employment integral to an exchange visitor's academic program which may occur during and/or after completion of studies. Such training may include - but is not limited to - internships, practicums, and field work. You must have written approval in advance from the ISSO or the IAO.

Last Reviewed: 27 November 2013 Last modified: 27 November 2013
Columbia University International Students and Scholars Office