J-1 Visa – Categories
A Research Scholar is in the US for the purpose of conducting research, observing, or consulting in connection with a research project. The maximum time allowed in a program is five (5) years. UT Southwestern Medical Center typically sponsors J-1 visas only for people who hold a Ph.D. or M.D. degree.
Important Note: If a visitor has been in the U.S. as a J-1 Research Scholar on or after November 18, 2006, they are not able to begin a new program as a J-1 Research Scholar until they have been out of J-1 status for 24 months.
A Short-term Scholar is in the U.S. for the purpose of lecturing, observing, consulting, training, or demonstrating special skills. The maximum time allowed in this program is six months. UT Southwestern typically sponsors J-1 visas only for people who hold a Ph.D. or M.D. degree
Foreign medical graduates must be ECFMG certified and have a J-1 visa sponsored by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG) to receive graduate clinical training at UT Southwestern. We will also consider foreign medical graduates who are US citizens, permanent residents or have other free-standing employment authorization as long as they are ECFMG-certified. UT Southwestern does not usually sponsor H-1B visas for clinical training.
In order for graduates of foreign medical schools to enter clinical training in the U.S. they must first complete a certification process, conducted by ECFMG, to show they have the medical expertise to train in the U.S. For information on the certification process, contact ECFMG.
Graduates of medical schools in the U.S. and its territories (Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands) do not have to undergo certification. U.S. citizens of foreign medical schools must receive ECFMG certification.
Exception: Graduates of medical schools in Canada are exempt from certification. However, they still require visa sponsorship from ECFMG.
UT Southwestern policy requires ECFMG sponsorship of a J-1 visa for all graduates of foreign medical schools who are not US citizens or permanent residents. After you have been accepted into a clinical residency or fellowship program at UT Southwestern, the International Affairs Office will assist you in obtaining the DS-2019 from ECFMG. To find information on requirements for visa sponsorship, visit the ECFMG website. Please submit all items to the International Affairs Office - do not submit your application directly to ECFMG.
UT Southwestern does not generally sponsor students under the J visa category. Please see the F-1 Visas section for student information or contact the International Office if you believe your case merits an exception.
Effective September 1, 2008, a new policy and procedure is in place for UT Southwestern Medical Center regarding individuals who wish to observe clinical activities. Such observers are limited to a three-month stay. International observers must be sponsored under the UT Southwestern J-1 visa program.