J-1 Pre-Departure

We are pleased to learn that you will be coming to USC as an Exchange Visitor. The University of Southern California is very proud of its long tradition of involvement in international exchange and we look forward to having you join us.

Now that you have obtained your DS-2019, the Pre-Departure section will guide you on important steps you must take before entering the US. You will begin by paying an on-line SEVIS Fee which is required for scheduling a visa interview. The Visa Application page will prepare you for obtaining a J-1 visa at the US Embassy or Consulate. Since J-1 regulations require that you purchase medical insurance for the full duration of your program, it is important to purchase coverage before you travel to the US. If you plan to arrive late or cancel your appointment, please review our special instructions.

We also encourage you to visit our Arrival section of our website for information pertaining to check-in and orientation.

The Office of International Services is here to assist you with your immigration related needs. Please contact us at j1exchg@usc.edu . We look forward to welcoming you to the University of Southern California and wish you a pleasant trip to the United States and Los Angeles.


The US Department of Homeland Security (DHS) requires a one-time I-901 SEVIS fee for new J-1 Exchange Visitors. This fee must be paid before the visa interview.

Visa Application

Once Exchange Visitors have received their DS-2019, they must obtain a J-1 visa at a US Consulate or Embassy to enter the US. The following page is a review of the application requirements to obtain a J-1 visa.

Medical Insurance

The Department of State and J-1 visa regulations require all Exchange Visitors and accompanying J-2 dependents to be covered by adequate health and accident insurance for their program duration. Please review the specific coverage required to maintain your J-1 status.

Delayed Arrivals & Cancellations

New information about Internal Requisitions available here

If a visiting Exchange Visitor plans to arrive late or cancel their appointment, this must be communicated and reported to the Department of State through the SEVIS database. Please visit this page to learn more about reporting responsibilities for scholars and department facilitators.

Living in LA

Living in LA webpage is designed to help scholars get settled in the US by providing information on banking and other money matters, transportation, and safety.