J-1 Program Transfer

J-1 Exchange Visitors may transfer from one program sponsor to another if the purpose of the transfer is to complete the academic objective for which he or she was admitted. The transfer process requires careful coordination between 5 parties, with the scholar taking responsibility for the success of the transfer:

  1. the Scholar
  2. the current institution’s host department
  3. the current institution’s International Office
  4. the new institution’s host department
  5. the new institution’s International Office.


Determining the Start Date at transfer institution
The start date at the new institution must be the day immediately following the last day at the prior institution. Gaps between program sponsorship (e.g., for a "vacation") are not allowed.

Exiting and Re-Entering the U.S. while transfer is pending
While the transfer is pending, travel outside the USA is STRONGLY DISCOURAGED. If emergency travel is necessary, consult ISSO immediately for assistance.

Guidelines for transferring in to UCSF and transfer out of UCSF are listed below.

When transferring in to UCSF


Host department responsibilities:


Exchange visitor responsibilities:

  • Inform his or her university's J-1 International Office of the intention to transfer to UCSF.
  • Provide to the hosting UCSF academic department copies of the current and prior DS-2019 forms, and any other information requested by the host department.
  • Remain at the current institution until the effective date of transfer.
  • Check in at your Human Resources (HR) Service Provider at UCSF on the effective date of transfer. Register to attend a mandatory J-1 Orientation.
  • Obtain the new DS-2019 from ISSO at the conclusion of your check-in session with HR.

When transferring out of UCSF


  • Scholar works with UCSF department and international office at new institution to complete a Transfer Out Form
  • Scholar submits the completed transfer out form to ISSO at least 1 month before planned transfer date
  • Scholar maintains appointment at UCSF until the effective date of transfer
  • Scholar reports to international office at new university to collect the DS-2019 at the first date of the program transfer