J-1 Visas and Cultural Exchange: Training Global Talent in the U.S.



For over 60 years, the U.S. Department of State’s Exchange Visitor Program has promoted mutual understanding and relationships between Americans and people around the globe through the use of short-term cultural and educational exchanges. SHRM is designated by the Department of State as a sponsor of trainings and internships as part of the Exchange Visitor Program under the J-1 Visa, and through this SHRM supports employers in facilitating U.S. based training opportunities for overseas employees, university students, and recent graduates. 

Training programs are primarily designed to impart U.S. business practices to foreign employees of multinational companies. These can encompass areas such as international leadership development or management “fast-track” programs, ramp-ups for new facilities opening abroad, and trainings in new technologies or operational procedures only available within the company’s U.S. operations. A typical participant is a highly educated, multi-lingual professional who has worked for the overseas business unit or within their industry for several years.  These training programs are commonly connected with similar programs to send American employees abroad for short-term assignments in different business units.

Internship programs are primarily designed to support corporate global internship, co-op, and apprenticeship programs. These often represent longstanding and well-established internship or co-op programs commonly related to specific research or academic partnerships, and frequently involve foreign participants engaging in programs alongside American students. A typical participant would be a candidate who is an upperclassman, PhD student or recent graduate of a leading university in their home country.

Over the years these programs have been an important talent management resource for employers and help them foster vital relationships around the world and promote economic competitiveness and innovation. The impact of the skills and relationships developed extend long after a participant has returned to their home country, and the versatility of the J-1 visa allow employers ranging from Fortune 500 companies to small and medium-size enterprises to participate in and benefit from the Exchange Visitor Program.

Interested in learning more about how employers can utilize the J-1 visa? If so, there are several ways to do so at the upcoming 2019 SHRM Annual Conference & Exposition in Las Vegas:

  • Stop by and visit me in the SHRM Global Enterprise Solutions booth in the SHRM Exposition during the Grand Opening Reception on Sunday, June 23.
  • For corporate delegation and international attendees, join me for a learning circle session on the J-1 visa on Tuesday, June 25 at 1:15 p.m. The learning circle session will be held in N232.
  • Schedule a one-on-one session during the conference. Email me to schedule a time.

Don’t miss this unique opportunity to learn about this unique program and new employer resource offered by SHRM!



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