UMD: A Globally Connected University

J-1 Intern Eligibility

Internship programs are offered to graduate students and undergraduate students who have a degree requirement for practical field experience. Internship programs provide unique opportunities for interns to gain practical experience on the process of conducting research in their academic field.  The U.S. internship must fulfill the educational objectives for the intern’s degree program at his or her home institution.

The Intern program is a structured work-based learning program that:

  • Reinforces an intern’s academic study
  • Exposes the intern to American techniques, methodologies, and expertise and expands their knowledge and skills
  • Enhances the intern’s knowledge of American culture and society
Arts and Culture
Social Sciences
Library Science
Management and Business
Counseling and Social Services
Commerce and Finance
Information Media and Communications
Industrial Occupations
Public Administration and Law
The Sciences

Length of Program

  • The minimum length of an intern program is three weeks; the maximum length is 12 months per degree/major.  No extensions beyond the 12 months are permitted.
  • The internship program must be full-time with a minimum of 32 hours a week.

Degree Eligibility

  • The intern must be currently enrolled in and pursuing a degree at a degree-or certificate-granting post-secondary academic institution outside the U.S.
  • Certification of good academic standing with his/her institution.
  • Certification that the internship program at the University of Maryland, College Park will fulfill the educational objectives for your current degree program.

Their degree information must be verified by the following:

English Language

The intern must have English language skills sufficient to function on a day-to-day basis in the internship.  English language proficiency can be verified by one of the following:

Financial Support

The intern must be able to show financial support in the amount of $1,000.00 per month. Personal finances can be shown with a bank letter that is signed by a bank official on bank stationery or with a recent bank statement.  If sponsored by family member attach a letter of sponsorship to the bank statement.

Repeat Participation

To be eligible for another internship program, UMD will review the following eligibility requirements:

  • Repeat participation is limited to 12 months per degree/major. 
  • The internship must fulfill the educational objectives for the intern’s degree program at his or her home institution.
  • The intern must be enrolled in and pursuing a degree at a degree-or certificate-granting post-secondary academic institution outside the U.S.
  • The intern must be in good academic standing with his/her institution.
  • The intern is not eligible for employment at the University of Maryland following the completion of the internship.


Step 1. Contact the department in which you would like to do an internship.  Typically, this contact will be a Professor or Scientist. 

Complete and submit an Application Form along with the required supporting documents to the department contact.

  • Proof of English language proficiency
  • Transcript copy
  • Resume or CV
  • A signed copy of the Home Institution Certification
  • Statement of purpose or letter of intent
  • Letters of recommendation (if required by host department)

Step 2.  The hosting Professor or Scientist will review your application and supporting documentation. If the hosting Professor or Scientist offers you an internship,

  • The Professor/Scientist will prepare a Training/Internship Placement Plan.  The plan will be sent to you for review and signature.
  • The department will also request the following information from you to start the immigration process.
    • J-1 Data Collection Form
    • Proof of funding, if not provided by the University of Maryland department
    • Signed Intern Attestation Form

Step 3. The Department will forward the necessary documentation to OIS to request a J-1 DS-2019.  ISSS reviews the application packet for eligibility requirements.  If the application packet is complete, ISSS prepares the J-1 DS-2019, signs the T/IPP and prepares a pre-arrival packet.  The Department will send the packet to you overseas.

Step 4.  The intern will receive the J-1 DS-2019 and apply for a J-1 visa at the US embassy/consulate.  (S)He is required to:

  • Review the J-1 DS-2019 for errors
  • Pay the SEVIS fee of $180 online, at least five days before the date of the visa interview
  • Complete the DS-160 visa application form and schedule a visa interview at the US Embassy/Consulate
  • Ensure the US Embassy/Consulate processes the J-1 visa stamp and attaches it to the passport
  • Research and select a health insurance plan that meets J-1 health insurance requirements

Step 5. Upon arrival into the US, the Department of State requires that all J-1 visitors check-in with their sponsor (ISSS) within 30 days of your program start date. The intern is required to:

  • Check-in with their department
  • Report to ISSS at 3109 Susquehanna Hall for check-in and validation and bring their passport, DS-2019, and proof of health insurance
  • Attend a J-1 Scholar Orientation, which is held every Wednesday at 10:00 am at ISSS.