In an effort to improve communication and build a better network for outgoing J-1 summer work and travel participants, the US Embassy is to work with the Irish Department of Foreign Affairs and local agencies and US sponsors on a series of outreach and information events.
Kicking off this year’s J-1 visa season will be the first such briefing to be held on Monday next at 1pm in University College Dublin.
The US Embassy and Department of Foreign Affairs will join the Council on International Educational Exchange (CIEE) and local partner, USIT at the orientation session for outgoing J-1 exchange participants in the debating chamber. Approximately 150 outgoing J-1 participants are expected to attend.
US Ambassador Kevin O’Malley has said, “The J-1 visa programme is a very important ingredient in the strong U.S.-Irish relationship. As the US Ambassador, I am often told that the Irish ‘get’ Americans. I am convinced that this massive J-1 programme is an underappreciated factor, for example, in the massive US-Irish business relationship which is so positive and successful.
“Ireland, despite its size, sends more students to the United States each year on J-1s than any other country in the world. Eight thousand students participated last year alone. An exchange on that scale just has to have an impact. But we have to make sure Irish students understand that the J-1 is an exchange program, and an opportunity to represent their country well.”
More than 150,000 Irish have participated in the J-1 programme over the last 50 years and the net result is a group of influential members of Irish society who all have a strong connection to the United States.”