» Resources for J-1 Scholars

J-1 status is used for those coming to Chapman University as visiting researchers, professors, and collaborators. They are called J-1 Exchange Visitors.

J-1 Exchange Visitors

The J-1 Visa was created "to increase mutual understanding between people of the United States and the people of other countries by means of educational and cultural exchanges." -- U.S. Department of State

  • J-1 Exchange Visitors may receive a salary or stipend from various parties. They can receive funding from Chapman University, the government, private organizations, their current place of employment (outside the U.S.), or personal funds but the funding must meet the current living expense requirements.
  • The length of a J-1 Exchange Visitor's stay ranges depending on their J-1 type; however, the maximum stay is five years.

Types of J-1 Exchange Visitors

Within the overall J-1 visa status, there are several different types of visitor. Each Visa category (short term, research and professor) is used for different purposes and valid for varying lengths of time.


  • Visit purpose: To lecture, observe, consult, collaborate, attend seminars/workshops/conferences.
  • Position at CU: Visiting Affiliated Scholar
  • Duration of visit: 1 day - 6 months (Can’t be extended.)


  • Visit purpose: To conduct research (primary focus), observe, consult, teach, collaborate
  • Position at CU: Visiting Affiliated Scholar, Postdoctoral Fellow, Academic Professionals
  • Duration of visit: 3 weeks - 5 years


  • Visit purpose: To teach (primary focus), lecture, observe, consult, research, collaborate
  • Position at CU: Lecturer, Visiting Faculty, Visiting Scholar
  • Duration of visit: 3 weeks - 5 years

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SEVIS Reporting Requirements

Your EV Program Responsible Officer (RO) is Susan Sams and the Alternate Responsible Officer (ARO) is Junko Takada. Please see the Contact Us information below for details on how to contact your program officers.

As your J-1 Exchange Visitor (EV) Program Sponsor, Chapman University is required to validate your program participation within thirty days of the program start date listed on your DS-2019 and to report any changes of name or U.S. address. These reports are submitted electronically to the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement or ICE using the Student Exchange Visitor Information System or SEVIS. As soon after arrival as possible, be sure to report in person to International Scholar Services. Please bring the following for both J1 and J2's: DS 2019, passport with visa.

Following initial validation, you must notify the RO of any changes to your U.S. address within 10 days of the change. A legal name change must also be reported within 10 days.

You will need a travel signature from the RO on your DS2019 if you are leaving the US temporarily during your program. We ask that you notify International Scholar Services whenever you plan to be outside the U.S.

Prior to Arrival

You cannot enter the USA more than 30 days prior to the start date on DS 2019. For tax purposes, Chapman uses a software system called Glacier. If you will be receiving money from Chapman, an email from support@online-tax.net will be emailed to you which will ask that you set up an account in Glacier. You should complete the tax questionnaire and follow instructions regarding submission. If you have questions about the questionnaire, you can email pcraft@chapman.edu.

Procedure for Obtaining Your J-1 Visa

  1. You must ensure that your passport is valid for a period of six months beyond the end date listed on your SEVIS DS-2019.
  2. Make an appointment with the US Consulate or Embassy as soon as you receive your SEVIS DS-2019. Some offices have different procedures or forms you will need to submit, so it is best to review the website where you will be applying for the visa. You can find your nearest U.S. Consulate* using the U.S. Embassy website.
  3. Before your appointment, you must pay a SEVIS FEE and print the SEVIS fee payment receipt. Take this receipt when you go to your appointment. The fastest way to pay the fee is through the SEVIS I-901 Fee processing website by using a credit card and completing the online Form I901.

Canadian citizens need a DS-2019 but do not need a U.S. visa. You should also carry proof of SEVIS I-901 Fee payment. When you enter the U.S., you will receive an I-94 Arrival/Departure Record card marked “J-1” and “D/S” (duration of status).

Important Information:

Health Insurance Requirements

The Department of State requirements for health insurance coverage are: $100,000 per accident or illness, $50,000 for medical evacuation, $25000 for repatriation and a maximum deductible of $500. You must maintain coverage for yourself and your dependents during your entire stay in the USA. Failure to do so can result in termination of your DS 2019.

Garnett-Powers & Associates (GPA) will be contacting you by email regarding the Chapman University Visiting Scholar Benefit Plan. You can either purchase health insurance from them or complete a waiver if you will have your own comparable health insurance plan.

If you will be at Chapman long term and are offered Chapman benefits in your contract letter, you will need to purchase a supplemental policy for repatriation and medical evacuation.

Housing and Transportation

Chapman has limited faculty housing. If your department has not arranged for your housing, please contact Susan Sams and she can help you find something nearby.

Chapman University has two locations in Orange County: the Orange campus and the Rinker campus. The Orange campus is located in the city of Orange, California. The Rinker campus is located in the city of Irvine, California. It is ideal for you to live in the city closest to the Chapman campus where you will do research/teach. You can see a map of Orange County by clicking here.

The mass transportation system is not convenient or especially good. Southern Californians use personal automobiles and therefore spend a lot of time driving because everything is very spread out. A reliable used car can cost between $8,000 - $11,000. Auto insurance can cost approximately $1,200/year.

Housing is expensive in Orange County. The average price for a room rental (renting a private, furnished room in someone’s home) is between $600 and $850 per month depending on what is offered and if a bathroom is shared or private. If you decide to rent an apartment and live alone or with your family, almost all are unfurnished and you have to pay utilities. The average price for a 1 bedroom (with kitchen/dining/bath) is approximately $1,300/month.

Information for Orange campus visiting scholars

Information for Rinker campus visiting scholars only:

Irvine Spectrum is a huge shopping/entertainment center near the Rinker campus. The following information provides the nearest wireless cell phone offices and Walmart (for economical shopping) near Irvine Spectrum. In addition, below are the addresses for the nearest (to Rinker) Social Security Office and Dept. of Motor Vehicles.

Apartments near Rinker Campus/ Irvine Spectrum area: Irvine Company Apartment Communities - see Centerpointe, Los Olivos, The Park, The Village.

If you are having trouble renting an apartment: Heritage Point in Irvine is international student and scholar friendly. They will work with I-20 and DS 2019 students/faculty despite the fact that they may have no social security number or credit history in the U.S. Unfortunately, it is not located as close to Rinker campus as the above apartments.

For Homestay rentals, please speak with Sandra Robbie at the Rinker Campus.

Mobile Phone Service Providers

Near Orange Campus

  1. AT&T
    125 S. Main St. STE A
    Orange, CA 92868

  2. T-Mobile Irvine Spectrum
    146 S. Main St., #4A
    Orange, CA 92868

  3. Verizon
    691 S. Main St., Ste 80
    Orange, CA 92868

Near Rinker Campus

  1. Verizon Irvine Spectrum
    649 Spectrum Center Dr.
    Irvine, CA 92618

  2. T-Mobile Irvine Spectrum
    504 Spectrum Center Dr.
    Irvine, CA 92618

  3. Walmart (for T-Mobile + economical shopping)
    71 Technology Dr.
    Irvine, CA 92618

Urgent Care and Walk-In Clinics

Near Orange Campus

  1. Pacific Urgent Care
    2115 N. Tustin St. Orange, CA 92866
    (714) 921-3870
    Mon-Sun 8am-8pm

  2. St. Joseph Heritage Urgent Care
    4720 E. Chapman Ave, Orange
    (714) 628-3300
    $10-$20 Co-pay; no appointments necessary

  3. St. Joseph Heritage Medical Group Urgent Care
    2501 E. Chapman Ave, Suite 101
    Orange, CA 92869
    (714) 628-3300

Near Rinker Campus

  1. Irvine Village Urgent Care
    15435 Jeffrey Rd.
    Irvine, CA 92618

  2. PlushCare Urgent care
    19724 MacArthur,
    Suite 100 (Corner of Jamboree)
    Irvine, CA 92612

  3. Irvine Urgent Care
    2500 Alton Pkwy
    Irvine, CA 92606

Wells Fargo Bank

We have a special arrangement for our international students and scholars with Wells Fargo bank at Orange Plaza (the Circle, 2 blocks from main campus).

If you ask for Marilyn Rohm, she will allow you to open an account with a Chapman ID card and your passport. If you do not yet have your ID card, Marilyn will allow you to provide it later. It is possible to open the account with Marilyn but utilize the branch in Irvine that is near Rinker Campus.

Wells Fargo branch near Orange

  1. Orange Plaza, Drive-up
    101 E. Chapman Ave
    Orange, CA 92866

Wells Fargo branches near Rinker

  1. Irvine Spectrum
    15771 Rockfield Blvd.
    Irvine, CA 92618

  2. ATM
    22 Prism Dr
    Irvine, CA 92618

  3. Los Olivos Marketplace
    8587 Irvine Center Dr.
    Irvine, CA 92618

Social Security Office

Near Orange Campus

  • 1851 E. 1st #500
    Santa Ana, CA 92705

Near Rinker Campus

  • 26051 Acero Road
    Mission Viejo, CA 92691

The Social Security Office will mail your card to the address you provide in your application (make sure to give a local address).

Please visit the Social Security website for operating hours, forms and detailed information. You will need to take your DS 2019, passport, J-1 visa and I-94.

Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV)

Near Orange Campus

  • 1330 E. First St.
    Santa Ana, CA 92701

Near Rinker Campus

  • 26535 Moulton Parkway
    Laguna Hills, CA 92653

For faster service, schedule an appointment on the DMV website.

Information for Academic Departments

Instructions for academic departments that want to sponsor a J-1 research scholar/professor:

This DS 2019 request form is required in order to create the DS 2019 needed for J-1 visa application. (This form must be filled out using Adobe.)

Contact Susan Sams who oversees immigration processing; however, depending on which department is assisting you with your invitation, other paperwork will be required.

Contact Us

J-1 Visa Support

Susan Sams, PDSO, RO
Specialist, International Scholar Services
(714) 997-6739

Eileen Besner
Director, Faculty Affairs
(714) 997-6544