Not many people think of waiting tables or running a cash register as an exciting adventure. However, if you have the chance to do this kind of work while visiting the United States, you may indeed consider it an adventure. Traveling to another country to meet the people and soak in the culture can be a life-changing experience.
Of course, it is not as easy as packing your bags and getting on a plane. The procedure for obtaining a visa for work or travel in the U.S is complex and carefully protected. It can also be a long process, so if you are considering embarking on this journey for the summer, beginning now is a good idea.
Qualifying for a visa
A J-1 Summer Work Travel visa allows you to come to the U.S. for up to four months. During that time, you will work in a seasonal position alongside U.S. citizens and learn about the culture in this country. You will receive pay for the work you do, and your sponsor will help you find an affordable place to stay during your visit.
In order to be eligible for this visa program, you must meet the following requirements:
- Complete at least one college semester or a similar term in an equivalent program of academic study
- Be a full-time student working toward a degree or in an accredited academic program in a country other than the U.S.
- Speak English well enough to communicate with others with whom you will interact in the U.S.
- Have a job offer waiting for you in the U.S. unless your home country is included in the Visa Waiver Program, such as Australia, South Korea or the U.K.
Approved sponsor agencies can place you anywhere in a variety of jobs, such as working in resorts, national parks and amusements in Colorado. They can also ensure that you have sufficient funds to sustain yourself and, if you have difficulty finding work, assist you in your job search.
However, sponsors can take these steps only after you apply and obtain approval for the Summer Work Travel program. Since time is of the essence to obtain a J-1 summer visa, the assistance of an attorney can prove beneficial. An attorney with experience in immigration law can offer legal guidance through every step of your immigration process to maximize your chances of achieving your goals with the least amount of stress.