Questions and Answers:

What is a J-1 visa?

The J-1 visa, also known as an Exchange Visitor Visa, permits legal internship by recognizing the recipient as part of an exchange program. It is issued by the U.S. government to all J-1 internship program applicants.


Does internship provide an opportunity for applicants without any previous experience?

Internship is widely accepted as a way to apply knowledge acquired at higher educational systems. The field of study combined with outside classroom experience (such as part-time jobs) influences the host company's decision-making for a candidate, but experience in a similar environment may also provide additional leverage for an applicant's case.


What level of English skill is required?

Although the requirement varies from field to field, in general, an intern is expected to be able to handle phone calls which roughly equate to a score of 750 on the TOEIC scale or a score of 500 on the TOEFL scale.


How long does it take to obtain a J-1 Visa?

The total time frame required to process a J-1 visa application depends on how fast the intern and host company can provide WACE with all the necessary information. When WACE sponsorship has been secured for the intern, the intern must apply for the J-1 Visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate in his/her home country. The process could take anywhere from one week to four or more weeks depending on the embassy or consulate where he/she applies. The intern can depart for the U.S. as soon as the J-1 visa is granted.


Can the internship duration be extended?

If the host company and the intern reach an agreement, the duration of the internship can be extended up to a total of 18 months. Contact us regarding the fee and the necessary application for extending the duration.


Where does the intern stay during the internship?

If assistance is requested by the intern, WACE will make recommendations although information regarding accommodations may also be provided by the host company.


Must an intern have accident & medical insurance?

For a J-1 visa to be issued, minimum accident & medical insurance is a requisite for the entire duration of the internship. Also having insurance will allow for swift action in an emergency.


Are salaries available?

Compensation is legal for interns training or working with a J-1 visa although in many cases interns are unpaid.


What types of questions are generally asked at the host company interviews?

Although varying, generally questions tend to include the intern's future plans and the reason for applying for a particular internship.


What costs must be paid by the intern?

Local transportation, all living expenses including rent during one's internship as well as adequate accident & medical insurance. The general cost of living, while different from individual to individual, is about $2,000 per month.


Will WACE assist in filling out the DS2019 application before the host company is determined?

No. Although assistance is provided in completing the DS2019 application, a host company is essential for this process. The following information will be required:
1.Training plan
2.Learning agreement
3.Letter of recommendation from previous employer(s) or professor
4.Copy of previous U.S. visa(s)
5.Copy of your degree with English translation
6.Passport size photos
7.Resume and/or Essay
8.Own insurance coverage Details will be available once the host company is determined.


What designated job categories are available for J-1 visas under the WACE program?

Designated job categories for J-1 visas under the WACE program are:
Information, Media, Communications, Management, Business, Commerce, Finance, the Sciences, Engineering, Architecture, Mathematics, Industrial Occupations, Public Administration or Law.


How can interns transfer funds to WACE?

There are three methods.
1. Personal check payable to WACE.
2. Wire transfer to WACE's bank in the U.S.A. or Japan.
Bank information will be provided upon request.
3. Postal or Western Union money order


Why are WACE's prices so low?

The following contributes to the pricing at WACE:
1. WACE being a non-profit organization keeps expenses down but in no way does it lower the quality of its work. This makes it extremely attractive to the intern as the cost of all other agents/organizations in Japan are extremely high and unreasonable.
2. Also take advantage of our promotional prices which are valid until September 15, 2006, or the first 100 applicants - whichever is fulfilled first.
3. Very little PR helps to keep costs to a minimum.
4. WACE is located in the U.S. where most of the processing takes place.


What is the basic flow from registration to the J-1 visa application?

1. Registeration via the Web
2. Review of the applicant's general qualifications
3. Interview with potential host companies
4. Application for DS2019
5. Application for J-1 visa


Why are there no costs for the host company?

WACE endeavors to introduce and provide quality positions to highly qualified Japanese interns. Also, the host companies are made aware that WACE has no intention of introducing interns as a means for inexpensive labor. Companies registered with WACE provide internships to talented and experienced applicants from Japan inasmuch as it is almost impossible from the local pool.


Are there any requirements for registration?

For a J-1 visa internship, two or more years of experience in a related field is required through either previous work or education.


Is J-1 internship a viable way for a career change?

A J-1 visa is not a means for a career change, but the internship is essential for screening the field of work for which one wishes to apply.


How selective can an applicant be regarding a host company?

While WACE works hard to find a desirable host company for a potential intern, it is up to the host company to make the final intern selection. Therefore, the ultimate importance is whether or not the host is interested in the potential intern.


Is it possible to change the host company during an internship?

While it is impossible to make a change without the permission of the host company and the program sponsoring association, the following reasons may permit changing host companies:
a. When the host company files for bankruptcy.
b. When the host company does not fulfill the promised financial support.
c. When emotional and physical demands of work cannot be met.
Also, the termination of an internship without the consent of the program sponsor will terminate the J-1 visa and force a return to the intern's homeland.



For further inquiries, feel free to contact us at info@wacejapan.org