Position Types and Eligible Immigration Status for Scholars
It is extremely important to consider the details and purpose of a foreign national’s proposed activities on campus before determining which visa category is most appropriate. Key factors to consider include:
- Whether the activities are temporary or permanent in nature;
- Whether the activities be funded by NC State;
- Are the activities primarily research, teaching and/or observation or more administrative in nature;
- Who will benefit from the activities – NC State, the foreign national, both;
- Whether the foreign national is currently in the U.S. or abroad
- The foreign national’s prior immigration history in the U.S.
- The foreign national’s country of citizenship and/or lawful permanent residency
Some HR positions may have more than one visa option depending on the applicant’s eligibility, country of citizenship, and whether they are already in the U.S. in a particular non-immigrant status. The J-1 Exchange Visitor program is the standard for applicants coming directly from outside of the U.S.
It is left primarily to the hiring department to decide the appropriate HR title assigned to a J-1 Exchange Visitor. Below are the main groups of position types at NC State University and the suitability of J-1 status for this position:
- Available visa possibilities at NC State University
- Available job codes for J-1 Exchange Visitors
- Departmental responsibility regarding J-1 Exchange Visitors
Due to the temporary nature of the J-1 visa, the position with NC State should be temporary in nature. Other possible visa options for temporary positions include TN, H-1B, J-2 with work authorization, F-1 Student with Optional Practical Training (OPT), and J-1 Student with Academic Training (A.T.).
Please note: The majority of foreign nationals (e.g. J-1, H-1B) need a continuing appointment with the university for the duration of their immigration status. Therefore, a foreign national placed into a temporary position cannot maintain their nonimmigrant status if the appointment requires a break in employment. Such employment must either end along with the status when the uninterrupted period of employment is exhausted, or be hired into a position that is both appropriate for the activities and does not require a break in employment.
The Post Doc position at NC State University is considered temporary. Approximately half of the Post-Docs at NC State University are international. Other possible visa options for Post Docs include TN, H-1B, J-2 with work authorization, F-1 Student with Optional Practical Training (OPT), and J-1 Student with Academic Training (AT). The Office of Postdoctoral Affairs provides additional (non-immigration related) support to our international Post Docs.
International scholars who will be coming to NC State University based on their own funding or home institution support often have position titles such as ‘Visiting Scholar’ or ‘Visiting Researcher’. Other possible visa options for unpaid positions are J-2 with work authorization, F-1 Student with Optional Practical Training (OPT), and J-1 Student with Academic Training (A.T.). While visitor visa categories (B-1/B-2, etc.) may sometimes substitute, all qualified visitors coming to NC State University from overseas are strongly encouraged to come under J-1 visa sponsorship.
A bona fide internship position is generally not an appropriate position type for a foreign national in the J-1 Research Scholar or Professor category. If you would like to invite a foreign national to do a research internship with your department, NC State University has the J-1 Student Intern Program to help facilitate this process for you.
J-1 Scholars cannot be hired into permanent, tenure-track, positions. Please direct all inquiries about permanent positions or employment visas (e.g., H-1B, TN, or green cards) as well as visitors on a B-1/B-2 visa to the International Employment Office in Human Resources.