Internship in The United States - The FAQs
Mediation process in the US
Entering the States involves a lot of paperwork so it's really important to stay organized to be able to keep everything under control. But don't worry: The SGA team will guide you through the whole process step by step:
Completing your SGA profile
Payment of the registration fee
Checking and forwarding your application
Skype meeting with program coordinator in the USA (conversation about your wishes and ideas)
Organization of your internship (including Skype interviews with companies)
Preparation of your internship contract
Payment of the program fee and payment of the health insurance
Visa Organization of the DS-Forms
Embassy appointment and booking your flight
Arrival and start of your program
Do I need an International Health Insurance?
Yes, after your successful placement, you have to get a health and liability insurance for the entire stay in the US (including the Grace Period). You will be informed about the insurance by our local partners as there is a special one for the J1 Visa.
May I also sign up for the Visa Support?
You have already found an internship and need a sponsor for your DS 2019 form? We also offer this service independently of the internship placement. In this case, we will directly start with the examination of your host company in the US after your registration.
How long may my internship last?
Usually, most of the host companies require a stay of minimum of 3 months (12 weeks). Some companies even require 6 months.
When do I have to apply for an internship?
Basically, you can apply all year round. Please note, that the number of applicants exceeds the number of available internship positions. To apply 3 or 4 months before your planned start, or as early as possible, is more than advisable.
Which internship positions are not offered?
In general, interns may not be placed in unskilled positions. Also, according to J1 visa requirements, it is not possible to get positions in the following branches:
Sports or therapeutic positions
Social work, nursery
Early childhood education
Are the internships paid?
Compensation varies from company to company and also strongly depends on the branch and the qualification.
Can I postpone my internship in the US?
If your internship doesn't last longer than 12 months, you are allowed to extend your stay up to 12 months. Note, that you will have to pay extra for the new DS-2019 form.
What does the fee cover?
Help with CV and cover letter according to US standard
Interview arrangement with the host company
Organizing contract between intern and host company
Internship/Training Placement Plan and Agreements (DS-7002 form)
Assistance in obtaining DS-2019 form
Support while applying for the J-1 Visa
Assistance in finding a flat
Information about cheap flights, insurances, vaccinations and other important travel information
Contact person of our partner organization that can be reached by phone and email during your stay
Health insurance about $95 /month (Please request the full amount before your application)
Optional Additional Services:
Airport transportation with direct transfer to your accommodation
Organization of a rental car or scooter
What's not included:
$180 SEVIS Fee
$160 US Embassy / Consulate Fee
Cost of Living
Can I apply for my J1 Visa at short notice?
You have the option to get your visa documents from the sponsor within 1 week (an additional fee of 500 Euros) or 2 weeks (additional fee of 300 Euros) instead of 4 weeks (included in the price). If you’re lucky you will be placed very quickly and you are able to sign up for the visa documents according to the standard way. For short-term applications, this express option is very helpful in order to start the internship on time.
If I get an offer from a company, can I possibly reject it and if so, are there going to be additional costs?
The internship search is personalized according to your wishes. Usually, our partners are able to match these wishes with their first suggestion. However, if you had your interview and you feel that this position does not quite fit, you can always tell us. It is important that we know the reason for your refusal in order to adjust the search even better. During the Skype meeting at the beginning of the mediation process, you will discuss your ideas and wishes with the coordinators in the US in order to find a successful match as quickly as possible. If you cancel during the mediation process there won't be any additional costs, only the registration fee of 200 Euro.
Am I allowed to have part-time jobs beside my internship?
With the J-1 visa, it is not allowed to take a job elsewhere, as you don't have a working permit. You are only authorized to work in your host company. You may only change your internship company in cases such as insolvency or if your internship obligations change from your contract.
Can I extend my internship?
If your initial internship lasts less than 12 months it is possible to extend it to a maximum duration of 12 months. In that case, however, an additional fee is due for a new DS-2019 form.
What information do I have to provide when entering the US?
To be able to enter the US, valid entry documents are required (e.g. your passport). In addition, the passenger has to know the address of, at least, the first overnight accommodation in the United States. The airline is entitled to forward the data to the US authorities before the passenger is arriving in the US.
How long may I stay in the US before and after my internship?
You may stay in the US 30 days before and 30 days after your internship. Many interns use this so-called “Grace Period” after the internship for a vacation before returning home.
May I apply as a high school graduate for an internship in the US?
No, because you don't fulfill the visa requirements for the J1 Visa. However, as soon as you have reached the third semester of your study or if you just finished your studies, you are eligible to start your internship in the US.
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