College of the Extended University

Responsibilities and Benefits of J-1 Exchange Student Status


  • Mandatory health insurance. Exchange Visitors are required as a condition of their J-1 status in the U.S. to carry health insurance for themselves and their accompanying family members. By government regulation, minimum coverage must provide up to $50,000 per accident or illness; $7,500 for repatriation of remains; $10,000 for medical evacuation to the home country; and a deductible not to exceed $500.00 per accident or illness. Students are required to purchase health insurance through Cal Poly Pomona.
  • Enrollment and complete full-time coursework (12 units for undergraduate and 8 units for graduate students) during fall, winter and spring quarters.
  • Do not work off-campus.
  • Limit on-campus employment to a total of 20 hours or less while school is in session. Keep your passport valid at all times (if expired, renew at your country?s Consulate or Embassy in the U.S.)
  • Request a travel signature on your DS-2019 at least one week before leaving the U.S. in order to return and continue your exchange program.
  • Obey all state and federal laws.
  • Report any change of address to the USCIS within 10 days of the change. It is also important to keep the International Center and Records Office informed of any change of address.


  • Enrolled students are eligible for immediate part-time on-campus employment, 20 hours or less per week while school is in session and full-time during vacation periods. Full-time employment is any amount of time more than 20 hours per week.
  • Can stay in the U.S. with an expired visa stamp as long as student status is maintained. There is no restriction on travel within the U.S.
  • Can travel to Canada or Mexico for 30 days or less and re-enter the U.S. with an expired visa stamp as long as you have a valid passport, I-94 card and DS-2019 with a travel signature from the International Center.
  • Eligible to apply for Academic Training work experience with your home university?s approval and recommendation by your Cal Poly Pomona Academic Advisor.
  • Have 30 days to depart the U.S. after the expiration date on your DS-2019 form.