The U.S. Embassy in Lima encourages all Peruvian students attending university-level studies to consider participation in the Summer Work Travel program (SWT). In previous years, approximately six-thousand Peruvian students have traveled each Summer to different cities across the United States where they experience our people and culture firsthand. They, in turn, share their culture and language with their host communities and provide a mutually beneficial cross-cultural exchange experience.
In addition to gaining valuable English language practice, participants have the chance to acquire work experience in a variety of fields. Upon completion of a work assignment in the United States, students are afforded thirty days to travel within the United States before returning home.
For program requirements, please refer to https://j1visa.state.gov/programs/summer-work-travel.
What to bring to the interview
- Valid passport
- Completed on-line DS-160; you must be able to state the name of your future employer and where you will be working in the United States
- DS-2019 form (original)
- Bank payment receipt for visa fee
- SEVIS fee payment receipt
- Proof that you are a full-time student (Constancia de Matrícula)
How do I verify that my Summer Work Travel (SWT) program sponsoring agency is approved by the Department of State?
How can I apply for the SWT program?
Who is eligible to apply for the SWT program?
Am I expected to speak perfect English during my SWT visa interview?
No, you will not be expected to be fluent. However, you should be able to carry a basic conversation and answer questions about your job placement and work responsibilities in English.
How do I schedule my visa interview or update information on my DS-160?
Since your SWT sponsoring agency has created your account and is scheduling your interview date, you should contact your agency directly if you need to verify or change your interview date or if you need to update any information on your application.
Once my visa is approved, how do I pick up my passport?
If your interview appointment was scheduled by your sponsoring agency, please contact your sponsoring agency about when and how to pick up your passport. If you scheduled the interview appointment on your own, you will receive your passport via DHL/DSC at the location you selected/indicated on your application. For additional information, please call (+51) (1) 709-7950 or (+51) (1) 709-7951.
What do the program BEGIN and END dates on my Form DS-2019 mean?
The program begins and end dates indicate when you may begin work and when you must stop working. You may begin working at any point on or after the program start date, but you must end your work by the end date of the program. Working beyond the program end date will impact your ability to participate in the program in future years.
How long before the program begin date may I enter the United States?
You may enter the United States up to 30 days in advance of your program begin date, but may not begin working until the program begin date is reached. Please remember that participation in the program cannot prevent you from attending any scheduled classes or taking exams at your university. If you miss any classes due to participation in the program, you will greatly jeopardize your chances of participating in the program.
How long after the program end date may I stay in the United States?
You have 30 days following the end date of your program to travel and/or to arrange for your return home. You are not permitted to work during these 30 days, and if you leave the United States during this grace period, you will not be permitted to re-enter the United States on your J-1 visa because you will no longer be in J status. Please keep in mind that it is your responsibility to return home in time for the start of your scheduled classes, no matter what your program end date is.
Can I switch jobs once I am in the United States?
Please check with your sponsoring agency before making any changes in your employment. If you change employment without the permission of your sponsoring agency, your status in the program may be terminated.
If your program is terminated, you must leave the United States immediately.
Can I work more than one job in the United States?
The Exchange Visitor Program regulations do not prohibit a participant from accepting a second job. However, you must check with your sponsoring agency before accepting a second job. Your sponsoring agency must approve and vet all jobs.
What if I have a complaint about the sponsoring agency or my employer in the United States?
You may register complaints with the Department of State at email@example.com. However, your U.S. sponsoring organization has primary responsibility for your program. If you have a complaint about your employer, you should first contact your sponsor for assistance. Contact information for your sponsor can be found in Box #7 of your Form DS-2019.
What if I have a difficult time finding a job placement once I arrive in the United States, or have concerns about the work conditions?
If you have questions or are experiencing difficulty in finding employment, or have concerns about the work conditions, you should first contact your sponsor for assistance. You also may contact the Department of State (firstname.lastname@example.org). You may also wish to contact Peru’s nearest Embassy or Consulate.
When can I start working and how long am I allowed to work?
You may begin working at any point on or after your program start date (the start date listed on your DS-2019), but you MUST end your work by your program end date (the end date listed on your DS-2019). Please keep in mind that it is your responsibility to return home in time for the start of your scheduled classes, no matter what your program end date is.
When is the latest I can return to Peru?
Following the program end date (the end date listed on your DS-2019), you have 30 days to travel within the U.S. or return home to Peru. Please keep in mind that you MUST return back to Peru at least one day prior to the start of your classes in accordance with your university’s academic calendar. Please remember, your SWT experience should in no way interfere with your academic program.
Are SWT participants eligible for inclusion in the International Exchange Alumni network?
Yes! SWT participants are eligible for inclusion in the International Exchange Alumni network. Benefits include funding for innovative projects, research tools, and networking opportunities with alumni in Peru and around the world. Visit http://alumni.state.gov to find out more, and to register send an email to: email@example.com