Your DS-2019, “Certificate of Eligibility for Exchange Visitor (J-1) Status is a numbered, bar-coded U.S. government certificate that tells the staff at an American embassy or consulate that you are being sponsored for a J-1 visa by UVa.
To apply for a J-1 visa, you will need a valid DS-2019 form and a valid passport. Once approved, the J-1 visa will be placed in your passport by the embassy or consulate staff. It is not possible for you to obtain a J-1 visa without a DS-2019 form
In addition, your DS-2019 tells officers of DHS who are responsible for securing America's borders, that you should be admitted to the US with J-1 status. To qualify for admission with J-1 status, you must present both a valid J-1 visa in your passport and a valid DS-2019.
The Form DS-2019:
- Identifies the participant (block 1);
- Identifies your program category (block 4);
- Identifies the sponsor (block 2 and block 7, which contain the name, signature and telephone number/address of the sponsor’s Responsible Officer);
- Provides a brief description of the program activity (block 2);
- Identifies the beginning and end dates of the program (block 3) and the program category (block 4); and
- Provides the estimated financial support during his or her program (block 5).
The travel validation box in the lower right corner of the form is for travel outside the US after the Exchange Visitor has started his or her program in the US and plans to return after traveling abroad for a short time to continue his or her program.