What is the J-1 visa program?
The J-1 Exchange Visitor Program was enacted as a result of the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961, also known as the Fulbright-Hays Act. The purpose of the Act is to increase mutual understanding between the people of the United States and people of other countries through educational and cultural exchanges. Activities specified in the Act are facilitated, in part, through the designation of public and private entities as “Sponsors” of the Exchange Visitor Program.

Through the Exchange Visitor Program, foreign nationals may visit the United States temporarily to teach, lecture, study, observe, conduct research, consult, train, or demonstrate special skills. Designated sponsoring organizations facilitate the entry of foreign nationals into the United States to complete the objectives of any one of 13 program categories. At the conclusion of their program, participants are expected to return to their home countries.

What is HTP’s role in the J-1 visa program?
HTP is designated by the U.S. Department of State as a sponsor of the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program. As such, HTP evaluates each participant and host employer application to ensure they meet J-1 visa regulations before issuing Form DS-2019.

What is Form DS-2019?
Form DS-2019 (also known as the “Certificate of Eligibility”) is a document that HTP issues to a participant when it has determined that the participant and host employer meet all requirement of the J-1 visa regulations. The participant presents Form DS-2019 to a U.S. consulate or Embassy for application of the J-1 visa.

Who is my legal sponsor?
HTP, not your host employer, is the legal sponsor of your training program.