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Visa Sponsorship Request for J-1 Scholars

After reviewing the eligibility criteria for sponsoring J-1 scholars, Department administrators should proceed to submit a J-1 visa request through the International Center Portal.

Initial J-1 visa requests for scholars outside the US should be submitted at least 60 days in advance of the desired start date. Department must contact their designated International Scholar Advisor if the start date is less than 60 days away from the request date.

J-1 visa extension requests may be submitted at any time the need for an extension is identified by the scholar and approved by the host department. However, extension requests should be submitted to the International Center no later than two weeks prior to the expiration of the scholar's current DS-2019.

Submit a New Scholar or Extension Request

Get access to the International Center Portal for Department Requests

To submit J-1 scholar requests, the department manager or administrator submitting the J-1 scholar request must have access privileges to the portal. Send an email to if you do not already have access to the portal.

Accessing the International Center Portal

Steps Instructions
Step One Click on the appropriate link:
Step Two If you are a Tufts University employee, use your Tufts username (UTLN) and password to log in.

If you are a non-Tufts University employee from an affiliated hospital, you must use your work e-mail as your username. Upon receiving a credentials information email from the International Center, you will be able to set up a password and security questions.



Step Three (a)












Step Three (b)











Upon accessing the application, you will be prompted to search or create a new user. The term "new user" refers to the scholar for whom the department is creating a J-1 visa request.

Do not use the search tool (currently disabled). Scroll down the page to use the "Add New User" tool.

For new J-1 scholars only

You must add the invited scholar into the International Center Immigration Portal. If the scholar is visiting your department for the first time, scroll to the bottom of the page and please add them as a new user by typing their e-mail address. Click "Next" and proceed to type the scholar's first name, last name and gender. Finally, click "Create New" to add the scholar and proceed to answer the appointment related questions.

If the scholar has previously visited your department, please type the scholar's e-mail that was previously used for an application. Do not use the Directory search function. Upon finding the record, select "Yes" to proceed to add new appointment information for the new visit.

J-1 scholar extensions only

To initiate a J-1 extension, please type the Tufts e-mail address of the scholar and click "add". If the Tufts e-mail address does not produce a result, please type the scholar's personal e-mail address. Do not create a duplicate user record.

Upon finding the record, select "Yes" to proceed to complete the J-1 Extension Request Application.

Step Four Once information is submitted by the department, an automatic invitation will be sent to the invitee's e-mail address. The invited scholar will complete the remaining information necessary for International Center staff to produce J-1 visa documents.

The International Center will contact department and invited J-1 scholar with further information once documents have been issued.


General Process

To sponsor a J-1 scholar to come to Tufts, the host or hiring department must submit a Department Request for New J-1 Scholar to the International Center using our International Center Portal. Once the department submits a Department Request for New J-1 Scholar through the International Center Portal, the Portal will send an email to the prospective scholar, asking the scholar to submit additional information that may be required.

Upon receiving a complete request from both the department as well as the prospective scholar, the International Center will issue a Form DS-2019 visa certificate to the scholar. The DS-2019 is then used by the scholar to apply for a J-1 Exchange Visitor visa and enter the US as a J-1 scholar.

Preliminary Preparation. Before submitting a Department Request for New J-1 Scholar, the department must gather the information listed below:

  • Scholar's email address and legal name
  • Appointment information including start and end date, source of funding, field of research and faculty sponsor. (Note: the funding must meet the Annual Estimate of Expenses. Find it here.)
  • Confirmation of English language proficiency including screening method and date, as applicable
  • Required documents for uploading: Appointment or invitation letter, School or HR approval letter as applicable
  • Incidental Patient Contact Statement, if applicable

You can refer to our New J-1 Scholar Preparation Guide for Administrators for additional information.

Special Instructions for J-1 Scholars Transferring to Tufts

If the department is inviting or hiring a J-1 scholar currently at another US institution of higher education, the International Center can arrange for a transfer of the scholar's J-1 sponsorship to Tufts University provided the scholar will be engaged in similar activities across both sponsors and other J-1 Scholar Transfer requirements are met. Because the transfer of J-1 visa sponsorship can be a complex process, it usually requires close coordination between all parties. Departments and prospective scholars are invited to talk to their International Center scholar advisor about their individual situations.

Once a decision has been made to invite or appoint a scholar who is currently in J-1 status at another institution, the department should initiate a Department Request for a New J-1 Scholar following the instructions outlined above. However, the scholar should also be provided a J-1 Scholar Transfer Form (link below) to present to their advisor at their current sponsor. Once the Transfer Form is completed, the  scholar will be prompted to upload the form into the International Center Portal.

To initiate the process, click on the following link:

Department Request for New J-1 Scholar

Upon submission of all the required information, the International Center will receive a notification that the J-1 visa request is ready for processing. The request will be processed within 5-7 business days.


International scholars are responsible for maintaining their immigration status, including knowing when their J-1 status is due to expire, and making timely requests for extensions to their departments. To extend the J-1 status of a J-1 scholar at Tufts, the host or hiring department must submit a Department Request for J-1 Extension to the International Center. Upon receiving a complete request, the International Center will issue an updated Form DS-2019 visa certificate extending the J-1 scholar's stay. Extension requests must be submitted at least 60 days prior and no later than 2 weeks before the status expiration date.

Before submitting a Visa Document Request, the department must gathered the information listed below:

  • Funding Information
  • Appointment Information including extension dates, updates to titles, site of activity, etc.
  • Approval letters as applicable the School/Department

You must refer to the J-1 Extension Request Preparation Guide for School/Hospital specific requirements:

J-1 Extension Preparation Guide for Administrators

To initiate the process, click on the following link:

Department Request for J-1 Extension 

Following receipt of the Extension Request, the International Center will arrange to deliver the Form DS-2019 visa certificate to the individual J-1 scholar within 5-7 business days.

The International Center assesses a processing fee to issue a Form DS-2019 visa certificate to a J-1 scholar. The fees are currently as follows:

  • $650 for initial J-1 visa certificate processing
  • $350 for J-1 extensions

Fee Responsibility: The processing fee must paid by the department for any J-1 scholar who will be appointed by Tufts to a paid teaching or research position. For J-1 scholars who are self-funded (not employed by Tufts), the fee may be paid by either the host department or the individual scholar using Flywire.

For self-funded visiting scholars, the host department is obligated to inform any invited J-1 scholar of any additional fees or costs the department may assess to support their visit.

Other Costs and Fees: The International Center processing fee does NOT include the following:

  • $220 I-901 SEVIS fee that must be paid by the J-1 scholar prior to the initial visa application and/or initial entry to the US in J-1 status
  • $160 visa application fee paid at the time of a visa application at US consulate (Note: Canadian citizens are not required to have visas prior to entering the US)
  • Other incidental charges and fees, such as passport fees, charges for transcript copies or translations, or other incidental charges
  • Express mail fees
  • Health insurance or travel insurance fees
  • Fees relating to the immigration status or ongoing maintenance of accompanying dependent family members