Exchange visitors in J-1 status are eligible to enter the U.S. as early as 30 days prior to the program start date indicated on their DS-2019, but are not able to begin program activities until the DS-2019 start date.

U.S. Entry Documentation

Exchange visitors seeking entry to the U.S. in J-1 status should be prepared to present documentation of their identity, purpose for traveling to the U.S., and ability to financially support themselves in the United States. Be sure to pack port-of-entry documentation in your carry-on luggage!

  • Valid passport
  • Valid U.S. visa (exceptions)
  • Original DS-2019 issued for CU Boulder scholar program
  • SEVIS fee receipt
  • CU Boulder invitation letter
  • Financial support documentation (e.g., CU Boulder offer letter, bank statement, affidavit of support) 
  • ISSS phone number (303-492-8057)

Additional documentation may be required—e.g., resume, local address in Colorado etc.

Port of Entry Procedure

It can take a considerable amount of time to clear customs so be sure to book a flight that allows ample time for you complete the entry process and transfer to your next flight.

The CBP official will review your documents and may ask you questions about the purpose of your travel to the United States. The CBP official will determine if you are admissible and, if so, will provide you with an admission stamp.

  • Your admission stamp should indicate your visa status (J1); expiration date of your status in the U.S. (D/S), and the date and port of entry.

CBP will create an electronic record of your arrival (I-94) or, if you are entering at a land border, issue a paper Form I-94, Arrival/Departure Record.

Arriving On-Campus

Transportation To and Around Boulder

Scholar Check-In

Immigration regulations require the university to validate the arrival of J-1 exchange visitors in the United States within 30 days of the program start date indicated on their DS-2019. To meet this requirement, exchange visitors must submit an Immigration Check-In Form and complete an online J-1 Exchange Visitor Orientation.

  • Exchange visitors are eligible to complete their J-1 Exchange Visitor Orientation prior to the DS-2019 date, but only AFTER they arrive in the United States
  • If you will arrive later than your DS-2019 start date, please contact ISSS as your SEVIS record may need to be updated

Failure to complete the immigration check-in process with ISSS will result in the cancelation of your SEVIS record and J-1 status in the United States. 

Immigration Check-In Form

Complete the J-1 Scholar Immigration Check-In Form as soon as possible after arriving in the United States.

  • Enter your Colorado address; upload your I-94; upload your J-1 visa, upload your Insurance Benefits Summary and Identification Card for your medical insurance and evacuation/repatriation coverage
  • If applicable, upload your J-2 dependent(s) I-94, J-2 visa, Insurance Benefits Summary, and Identification Card

Online J-1 Exchange Visitor Orientation

J-1 exchange visitors must attend an online J-1 Exchange Visitor Orientation in order to complete their check-in reporting with ISSS. Exchange visitors will receive instructions on how to complete their J-1 Exchange Visitor Orientation AFTER they have completed their Immigration Check-in Form. The entire check-in process must be completed with ISSS no later than 30 days after the DS-2019 program start date. Failure to complete the immigration check-in process within these 30 days will result in the automatic cancelation of your SEVIS record and J-1 status in the United States.