Information for Visiting Scholars


If you are interested in a temporary research or teaching appointment at Cal Poly, please contact the Cal Poly academic department associated with your field. The department will initiate the invitation process through the appropriate Dean’s office. You may also find academic departments listed under the A-Z search on the main Cal Poly website.

Once you have been accepted for Cal Poly sponsorship for a J-1 visa, the International Center will send you a link to the DS-2019 Request form or J-1 Student Intern Request Form within which we will collect electronically, an image of passport, proof of funding, proof of English Proficiency, your CV, and an electronic mentor agreement or internship supervisor agreement from your Cal Poly faculty or staff sponsor.

Please contact Judy Mitchell ( or Susan Tripp (




For a listing of all visa types and their employment eligibility in the USA see this Chart of Non-Immigrant Categories. The Office of Academic Personnel can assist departments with hiring faculty requiring other types of visas.

DS-2019 Online Request Form

If your Cal Poly sponsor is offering you an internship, please complete the J-1 Student Intern Request Form (online).

J-1 Student Intern Online Request Form

You will be directed first need to create an account in the International Students and Scholars system. After you have created your account, then re-select the link to the form again and login to begin the application.


Proof of Funding

Be sure to include documented proof of any funds you will use to support yourself during your stay at Cal Poly. The amount of funds you will need to show will depend on your length of stay and number of dependents coming with you. Funding can be in any combination of salary from Cal Poly (if applicable), personal, government, or organizational funds including stipends, scholarships, or other support. Please also include a copy of your passport.



Below is the estimate of the cost of living in San Luis Obispo. This estimate is used to determine the amount of funding needed to issue the Forms DS-2019 for you and your family members. It includes the cost for mandatory health insurance for visitors on J-1 visas and any accompanying dependents on J-2 visas. This cost is approximately $123 per month.

Health insurance is purchased by phone once the visitors arrive in the USA by calling Wells Fargo Insurance Services at 800-853-5899.


Proof of English Language Proficiency

U.S. Department of State regulations require that the sponsor (Cal Poly) evaluate the visitor’s English language skills to determine that the visitor has sufficient proficiency in the English language to successfully participate in his or her program and to function on a day-to-day basis. We are allowed to use one of the following “objective measurements of English language proficiency” to determine an applicant’s language proficiency:

  • A recognized English language test;
  • Signed documentation from an academic institution or English language school; or
  • A documented interview conducted by the sponsor either in-person or by videoconferencing, or by telephone if videoconferencing is not a viable option. This is to be done by the faculty member serving as the mentor to the visitor while he or she is at Cal Poly.




Please read through the information provided on this site to help you with your visa application process and other logistics to arrange for living in San Luis Obispo.

International Scholar Handbook Exchange Visitor Program Welcome Brochure


We look forward to meeting you when you check in upon your arrival at Cal Poly.

Please email Susan Tripp ( to schedule an appointment. Our office is in Building 52, Room E32. When you come to check in, bring your passport, DS-2019, Arrival Departure Record (I-94), proof of health insurance, and address information.


Please contact Judy Mitchell ( or Susan Tripp ( if you have any questions.