Visa Appointment at the U.S. Consulate
Scholars should present the following documents to a U.S. consular officer at the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate in your country to apply for a J-1 exchange visitor visa. Please refer to your U.S. Embassy or Consulate regarding visa processing times and appointment schedules. For more information about applying for your visa, visit the State Department’s website. (http://travel.state.gov/content/visas/en/study-exchange/exchange.html#howtoapply)
Documents Needed for J-1 Visa Interview
The ISSS office at NMSU highly encourages the presence of the following documents during your visa interview. We also encourage that all applicants answer all consular officer questions with honesty and assurance.
- Form DS-2019
- Issued by ISSS office at NMSU. Once you have the DS-2019, please read the instructions on the back of the form carefully and sign it where indicated.
- Valid passport
- Passport should be valid for a minimum of 6 months beyond the end of intended stay.
- Financial Documents
- Financial documents such as a job offer letter, funding letter from home government or institution, and/or a personal bank statements. Make sure that all supporting financial documents are on official bank letterhead and include name of account holder, type of account, date, account balance and type of currency.
- Proof of Non-immigrant Intent
- You may be required to show that you do not intend to stay in the U.S. beyond the duration of the end date on your DS-2019. This can be done by showing strong ties to your home country, such as ownership of real estate/property, ownership of business/investment and relationships to family.
- SEVIS (Student & Exchange Visitor Information System) Fee Receipt
- All Exchange Visitors applying for a J-1 visa are required to pay the SEVIS fee before going to the U.S. embassy or consulate for their visa interview. Applicants who are citizens of Canada or residents of certain island nations wishing to apply for J-1 status at a Port of Entry into the U.S. must pay the SEVIS fee before entering the United States and show proof of payment.
- The SEVIS fee is $190 USD for all J-I visa applicants; the fee cannot be paid at the consulate. Please note that the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) will not refund the SEVIS fee if J-1 applicants are denied or choose not to come to the U.S. after their visas are granted.
- The SEVIS Fee must be paid at least 3 business days prior to the visa interview date. Please allow adequate processing time for payments to be recorded in the SEVIS system prior to the scheduled visa interview. The interviewing officer will confirm that the fee has been paid by accessing SEVIS. Please remember that you must bring the official receipt to the visa interview as proof of payment, as well as have it with you upon arrival to the U.S.
- The most common and hassle free way to pay the SEVIS fee is by accessing this link: https://fmjfee.com/i901fee/desktop/index.jsp?view=desktop. Click the “Submit Form I-901 and Fee Payment” button and follow the instructions as indicated. ISSS notifies you via email of any pertinent information even if the inviting academic department chooses to send the DS-2019 to you. Said email will include program number and your SEVIS ID number. These are needed to pay your SEVIS fee successfully.