J-1 International Student Internship Program (ISIP)

1. What is ISIP?

ISIP is the International Student Internship Program at Princeton University. ISIP provides opportunities for international students to intern with Princeton University faculty, scholars, and administrators on campus during the summer.  Interns must first apply for and be admitted into the ISIP program by submitting the ISIP Application Form.  The ISIP Program and the Application Form are administered by the Office of the Vice Provost for International Affairs and Operations (VPIAO).   More information from the VPIAO about the ISIP Program and Application

The Davis International Center is responsible for processing the J-1 Student Intern Visa for the intern after they have been accepted into ISIP by the VPIAO. 

2. J-1 Regulatory Requirements for the J-1 Student Intern Visa Program

  1. Intern must be currently enrolled and in good academic standing at an accredited post-secondary academic institution outside the U.S. in an undergraduate program of study. 
  2. The internship program must fulfill educational objectives for the current degree program at the home university. 
  3. The intern must be in the U.S. primarily to engage in the student internship program and not just to seek employment.
  4. The intern must meet the minimum requirements of the J-1 Health Insurance requirement for the duration of the program (see item #4 below).
  5. The Departmental Internship program must consist of a minimum of 32 hours per week and that the internship will include no more than 20% clerical work.
  6. The Department must confirm that the student has sufficient English language proficiency to complete the Internship requirements.
  7. The intern must return to the home institution after the Princeton Internship program in order to "fulfill and obtain a degree".

3. Visa Application Instructions

1.  After the intern applies and is admitted into ISIP by the VPIAO (see #1),  the Davis IC will contact the ISIP intern with instructions for completing the Application for Visa Certificate  AVC for International Student Internship Program (ISIP) .  The AVC is a required form on which the student intern will indicated the source and amount of funding that will be used to cover the expenses of the ISIP program. 

2.  The Princeton University Department contact will need to complete two required forms and submit them to Claire Hu (xuanh@princeton.edu) in the VPIAO office: 

3.  When the Davis IC has received all three completed forms listed above in support of an ISIP intern, they will prepare the required J-1 visa application documents and mail them to the intern along with visa application instructions.

4.  The ISIP Intern will apply for the J-1 Student Intern visa and travel to Princeton to begin the internship.  Health insurance is a requirement for the visa program, and all ISIP Interns must secure health insurance that complies with State Department requirements (more info below).

5.  The ISIP sponsoring Department is responsible for submitting final intern evaluation within 15 days before the last day of the ISIP program to the Davis IC.  (as required by the J-1 regulations)

4. J-1 Exchange Visitor Health Insurance Requirement

J-1 international student interns are required to have medical insurance coverage in effect that covers them during the dates they participate as a J-1 visa holder as indicated on the DS-2019 form. Failure to maintain the required minimum insurance coverage will be considered a violation of the J-1 regulations and will be subject to termination from the J-1 exchange visitor program. If the intern will arrive in the United States before the start date or depart after the end date on the DS-2019 form, they need to arrange for health insurance coverage during the full time that they are in the U.S. Prior to starting the internship, the intern will be provided with general information about health insurance plan requirements.

Minimum Medical Insurance Requirements as per the J-1 Federal Regulations [22 CFR 62.14]:

  • Medical benefits of at least $100,000 per accident or illness.
  • Repatriation of remains in the amount of $25,000.
  • Expenses associated with the medical evacuation of the exchange visitor to home country in the amount of $50,000.
  • A deductible not to exceed $500 per accident or illness.
  • Must be underwritten by an insurance corporation with an A.M. Best rating of "A-" or above; a McGraw Hill Financial/Standard & Poor's Claims-paying Ability rating of "A-" or above; a Weiss Research, Inc. rating of B+ or above; a Flitch Ratings, Inc. rating of "A-" or above; a Moody's Investor Services rating of "A3" or above.
  • Or the participant's policy may be backed by the full faith and credit of the government of the exchange visitor's home country.

5. Two-Year Home Residency Requirement

A J-1 Student Intern may be subject to a two-year-home-country residence requirement which could limit their future eligibility in the U.S. for the H-1B visa, L Visa, or Permanent Resident status. All prospective J-1 Student Interns should be aware of this requirement and how it might impact their future U.S. immigration options.   Learn more about the Two-Year Home Country Residency Requirement.