Incidental Employment for J-1 Scholars

Authorizing Short-Term Occasional Lectures or Consultations

The term "occasional" embodies the concept of single events rather than an ongoing activity. ISSS must ensure that "occasional lectures or short-term consultations" do not interfere with and are in keeping with the activities of the exchange visitor's program.

Graduate assistantships are not considered Short-Term Occasional Lectures or Consultations and cannot be accepted when in J-1 scholar status.

Authorization by your J-1 Responsible Officer
To work for any employer other than the school named on your Form DS-2019, you must first obtain approval in writing from your J-1 Responsible or Alternate Responsible Officer, who represents your J-1 sponsor and issued your Form DS-2019. He or she must evaluate the proposed employment in terms of your program objectives and your individual circumstances, and then decide whether it would be appropriate or not.

If our school is your sponsor, then your J-1 Responsible or Alternate Officer is the international advisor in International Advising. If your J-1 sponsor is an agency, and if you are uncertain how to reach your J-1 Responsible Officer, International Advising can help you locate the responsible Officer who would assist you.

The proposed employment:

  1. Must be directly related to the objectives of your Exchange Visitor program
  2. Must be incidental to your primary program activities
  3. Must not delay the completion of your Exchange Visitor program
  4. Must be documented in SEVIS

To obtain authorization for incidental employment, you should present the following to your J-1 Responsible or Alternate Responsible Officer:

A letter of offer from the prospective employer describing the terms and conditions of the proposed employment, including the duration, the number of hours, the field or subject, the amount of compensation, and a description of the activity for which you are being hired.

A letter from your department head or supervisor:

  1. Referring to the letter from the prospective employer.
  2. Confirming that the employment is directly related to your principal activity, is indeed incidental, and will not delay completion of your program.
  3. Explaining how the proposed activity would enhance your Exchange Visitor program.
  4. Recommending approval of the employment.

If the J-1 Responsible or Alternate Responsible Officer approves, International Student and Scholar Services will authorize the employment in writing.

Employment cannot start until approved by the J-1 Responsible or Alternate Responsible Officer.