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Camp USA

Important Visa Documents

Once everything is confirmed, it is time to obtain your J-1 Visa. InterExchange will provide assistance during this process, but you will be responsible for filling out paperwork and interviewing at an embassy.

Important Visa Documents

The DS-2019 Form

The DS-2019 Form is your proof of sponsorship. This is the form that allows you to legally work in the United States (provided that you also have a valid J-1 Visa) for a specified period of time. It is also the form that determines how long you can work and stay in the U.S.

InterExchange will provide you with this form. It will be uploaded to your InterExchange account when it is ready. You must PRINT out a copy to take with you to the embassy. They will NOT accept it in digital form.

Sample DS-2019 form document

You will also need your SEVIS receipt (also called the I-901 Form). Once you have printed your DS2019 form, you can access your SEVIS receipt here. You must PRINT out a copy to take with you to the embassy. They will NOT accept it in digital form.

Please keep both of the documents in a safe place. Upon entry to the U.S, you will be asked to show your DS2019 and/or your SEVIS receipt. You will also need these documents in order to apply for a Social Security number once you have started working at camp. 

The first thing you need to complete in order to apply for the J-1 Visa is the DS-160 Form. You can complete this form here. You will need to submit the DS-160 Form, your DS-2019 Form, SEVIS receipt and passport to the U.S. Embassy or Consulate in your home country in order to schedule a visa appointment. You can refer to this article for more information about completing your DS-160 and booking your visa interview. Please consult with your International Cooperator or the embassy’s website to determine if there are other forms you may need to submit with your application, as requirements vary by country.

When you get your passport back from the embassy, if approved, your visa will be printed inside. The visa is the document that allows you to enter the United States and explains why you are traveling to the U.S. The J-1 Visa is an Exchange Visitor Visa, sponsored by InterExchange. 

There are two items on the J-1 Visa that you should check:

  1. Entries. Under this heading, there will either be the number “1” or the letter “M.” If your visa has the number “1,” it is a Single Entry Visa. This means you can only enter the United States one time on this visa. If your visa has the letter “M,” it is a Multiple Entry Visa and it allows you to enter the U.S. several times. You could, for example, go to Canada during a weekend off and re-enter the United States. You should not plan on leaving and re-entering the United States during the 30-day travel period.

Important: If you have an “M” Multiple Entry visa and you plan to travel outside the U.S. and return, you must re-enter the U.S. before the expiration date on your visa and have your DS-2019 Form signed by InterExchange. Please note that, depending on your home country, you may be required to obtain a visa to travel to Mexico or Canada. Please contact the Mexican or Canadian consulate for information.

  1. The expiration date. You are only allowed to enter the U.S. until the expiration date stamped on your J-1 Visa (even if it is multiple entry) or until the end date of your DS-2019 Form, whichever is earlier.

Sample USA J-1 Visa document

Important Notes

You must return home within 30 days of your last day of work. InterExchange Camp USA will report all participants who do not return home to the U.S. Department of State and to their home countries’ embassies.

J-1 Visas issued by U.S. Embassies in some countries may have an expiration date that is later than the end date of this program. For example, you may find that the embassy has given you a visa that expires in two years, instead of four months. This does not allow you to stay in the U.S. for longer than the duration of our Camp USA program, which is indicated on your DS-2019 Form. Instead, it means that if you want to come back to camp next year, you may not have to apply to the U.S. Embassy/Consulate for a new J-1 Visa. However, you will still need to get a new DS-2019 Form. The J-1 Visa is not valid without a DS-2019 Form. Some countries also have early end dates. Please be sure you know when you need to return to your country.

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