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Key Points

  • J-1 students and recent graduates in the STEM fields can now get an academic training extension
  • The extension is available for J-1 students who are enrolled in an undergraduate program or pursuing a pre-doctoral degree
  • Students are permitted a training extension of up to 36 months
  • The extension is granted to students in the 2022-2023 academic years and recent graduates within 30 days of graduation


The Department of State (DOS) has announced an academic training extension for certain J-1 students in the STEM fields.

What are the Changes?

The new academic training extension is available to specific college and university students who are in the US as exchange visitors and are studying in the fields of science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM).

To qualify for the J-1 extension, exchange visitors must be students enrolled in an undergraduate or pre-doctoral degree program. Additionally, students must be actively pursuing or have recently completed studies in a STEM-related field. Students must be seeking a degree to apply for the extension, and the length of their academic training must be no longer than 36 months, which includes one extension.

Individuals who meet the academic training requirements can participate in the Department of State’s initiative during the 2022-2023 academic years. Sponsors can request STEM-related training for up to 36 months for students pursuing an undergraduate or pre-doctoral degree in a STEM field, along with recent graduates seeking to pursue academic training within 30 days of completing STEM-related studies.

Generally, the DOS caps academic training at 18 months for students pursuing undergraduate or pre-doctoral degrees. However, additional academic training is permitted, to the extent necessary, to allow eligible students and recent graduates to satisfy the mandatory requirements for their degree program in the US.

Looking Ahead

Sponsors who want to get academic training extensions up to 36 months must comply with all requirements outlined in 22 CFR §62.43(c)). Additionally, they must obtain written approval for the extension from the Private Sector’s Office of Designation.

Source: BridgeUSA

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