International Services

The University of South Florida and our office will be closed for the winter break starting at 5:00pm on Dec. 22, 2017 and will re-open at 8:00am on Jan. 2, 2018. Please make sure any time sensitive issues are resolved prior to the closure. Processing of eforms/documents will resume in 2018. The closure time will not count towards any published processing times.


J scholars may travel outside the US for periods not to extend 30 days.   The scholar and dependents will need the following for re-entry into the US:

  • A valid passport (if subject to passport requirement)
  • A valid J-1 visa (if subject to visa requirement)
  • A travel signature from International Services.
  • Proof of financial support as indicated on the DS-2019
  • Dependents: Dependent J-2 spouse and children must have their own DS-2019 and follow the same procedure as the exchange visitor for re-entry.

Travel Signatures
J scholars may request a travel signature for travel of less than 30 days by submitting a Travel Signature Form.   Documents will be signed within 5 days.  Scholars with urgent travel may obtain a travel signature during Walk In Hours hours.

Travel Outside the US Beyond 30 days
Travel outside the US for longer than 30 days that is unrelated to the exchange program activity will result in termination of immigration status. 

J scholars in the Research Scholar or Professor category who will be participating in their exchange program during an absence outside the US of 30 days must request “Out-of-Country” approval prior to leaving the US.  To request “Out-of-Country” Approval, the scholar must submit the following items to International Services with the travel signature form:

  • Expected date of departure from US
  • Expected date of return to US
  • Name of foreign institution in which the scholar will continue to pursue the program activity while outside the US.
  • Foreign institution full address
  • Letter on USF letterhead from USF sponsoring department approving of the out-of-country activity and explain how the scholar will be an active participant in USF’s J Exchange Visitor Program and will be pursuing the original program objective/activity outside the US.

If the “Out-of-Country” is approved, International Services will create a SEVIS “Out-of-Country” and sign the DS-2019 for travel.  Upon return to the US, the scholar should report to International Services.

Non-USF sponsored exchange visitors
J scholars and visitors with a non-USF DS-2010 should contact their sponsoring agency for travel signatures on the DS-2019.

Obtaining a new J-1 visa
New visa stamps are issued at a US Embassy or Consulate outside the US.  J scholars will need a valid passport, signed DS-2019, evidence of financial support, and a letter from their department detailing their research for the visa application.  Scholars should contact the US Embassy or Consulate directly for additional requirements since the procedures and protocols may vary from Consulate to Consulate. (Please see:  for a current list of all U.S. Embassies and Consulates) 

Automatic Revalidation
Some exchange visitors travelling to Canada, Mexico, and Caribbean countries excluding Cuba for fewer than 30 days may be eligible for automatic revalidation of their expired J-1 visas.
For information see here-

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