Obtaining a DS-2019

The DS-2019 is the “certificate of eligibility” for J-1 status. All Exchange Visitors must have this document in order to receive a J-1 visa and enter the US. J-1 Exchange Visitors are issued DS-2019s by the Office of International Services at the sponsoring academic department’s request. It is important that the correct J-1 category is selected for the appointment and that minimum funding requirements are met.


With consideration to the ongoing COVID-19 emergency, all J-1 appointments moving forward must begin on or after 1/01/2021. Correction Requests specifying an earlier start date will not be processed unless approved as a special exception by the school’s Research Vice Dean.

Again, given the impact and fluidity of this pandemic, departments are asked to use viable program dates when amending a J-1 appointment.

Selecting a J-1 Category

USC hosts foreign nationals in several different J-1 Exchange Visitor categories. Depending on a number of factors, one category may be more appropriate than another. This page is an overview of each J-1 category used at USC and their various lengths of stay.

Funding for J-1 Exchange Visitors

J-1s may receive funding from multiple sources, including USC, the visitor’s home government, the visitor’s home university, personal sources, and private organizations. Please review this page for more information about funding requirements for J-1 Exchange Visitors and their dependents.

DS-2019 Application

The following page is a review of the application requirements to obtain a DS-2019 from USC. This page also includes information specific to Exchange Visitors already in the US that would like to transfer their SEVIS record to USC.

Delayed Arrivals & Cancellations

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.