Occasional Lectures and Short-term Consultations

Occasional Lectures and Short-term Consultation authorization is part of the J-1 Scholar Work Options.

Occasionally, a U.S. entity (other than the UMN) invites a scholar to give a lecture or a short-term consultation in their field of expertise. Often, the entity wishes to reimburse the scholar for their travel expenses or pay them an honorarium. With proper authorization, the scholar would be permitted to perform this activity and receive payment.

If your DS-2019 was issued by the University of Minnesota, you are required to receive authorization from ISSS before you begin the activity.

Eligibility for Authorization

  • The activity must be directly related to the objectives of the scholar’s program at the UMN.
  • The activity must be merely incidental to the scholar’s primary program activities.
  • The activity may not exceed one month in duration.
  • The activity must not delay the completion date of the scholar’s program.
  • The scholar must act as an independent contractor (not an employee) in the activity.
  • The activity must be approved in advance and in writing by ISSS.
  • The activity and site of activity must be documented in SEVIS.

Authorization Procedure

  1. Obtain a letter from the institution, company, or person offering the activity and pay, which states the terms and conditions of the invitation, including:
    • Duration
    • Number of hours
    • Field or subject
    • Amount of compensation
    • Description of activity
    • Name and address of the location where the activity will be performed
  2. Obtain a letter from your UMN faculty mentor or department head recommending the activity and explaining how it would enhance your program.
  3. Meet with an ISSS advisor during walk-in hours or make an appointment. Bring the following:
    • A letter from the institution, company, or person offering the employment
    • A letter from the UMN faculty mentor or department head
    • J-1 Scholar Service Request Form
  4. The ISSS advisor will review the information provided.  If the adviser determines that the activity is warranted and satisfies the requirements, they will provide you a letter authorizing the activity.
Last updated: July 12, 2021