Route J-1


J-1 Trainees Get a Professional Start in the White Mountains

Posted on Wednesday, July 29th, 2015 at 3:55 pm.

Bretton Woods, New Hampshire welcome sign

Bretton Woods, New Hampshire welcome sign

As I wrote from Florida, I am on the lookout for J-1s wherever I go this summer. While up in New England visiting family last week, I made my way to the iconic Mt. Washington Hotel in Bretton Woods, New Hampshire. A living history book, it opened in 1902 as a luxury summer residence for wealthy city dwellers who were carried by train almost straight to the hotel doors. Nestled in the White Mountains, it is a popular destination for hikers, as well as ghost hunters, international monetary policy wonks, and J-1 Summer Work Travelers and Trainees. Read More ›

Categories: J-1 Visa, Participants, Program Spotlight

In Shenandoah National Park, Hosting J-1 Participants is a Privilege

Posted on Tuesday, July 21st, 2015 at 3:32 pm.

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DAS Lerner and J-1s at Skyland Lodge at the Shenandoah National Park

Last week, my colleague Grace Cho joined me for a visit to the Shenandoah National Park and wrote about our visit below. Happy reading! Read More ›

Categories: J-1 Visa, Participants, Program Spotlight

Au Pairs Help Package Meals for Children in Need

Posted on Tuesday, July 14th, 2015 at 3:32 pm.

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Au pair volunteers sifting rice into bags for meals.

In this post, my State Department colleague Stacey Gomelsky describes her recent experience volunteering with J-1 Au Pairs in Washington, D.C.  (Photo credits to Yupa Khin Nyunt.)

“We make a living by what we do, but we make a life by what we give.” — Winston Churchill Read More ›

Categories: J-1 Visa, Participants, Program Spotlight

J-1 Adventures in Florida

Posted on Thursday, July 9th, 2015 at 2:15 pm.

J-1 Intern Justine Ye Ning Cawthorne of the United Kingdom helps cast a net to bring in sea life for counting and observing on Clearwater Marine Aquarium’s Sea Life Safari Boat

J-1 Intern Justine Ye Ning Cawthorne of the United Kingdom helps cast a net to bring in sea life for counting and observing on Clearwater Marine Aquarium’s Sea Life Safari Boat

Route J-1’s subtext is “Discovering the World in Your Hometown” because of the sheer number of hosting communities all across the United States. People are often astonished to learn that the J-1 Exchange Visitor Program bridges communities in all 50 states with participants from 200 countries around the world. Two hundred! In every state! Our website’s handy tool allows you to see how many participants are currently on program in each state. The EVP brings to life international cultures and faraway countries for the American public. These days, as a part of my vacation preparation routine, I check to see if any J-1s are on program at my destination. Read More ›

Categories: J-1 Visa, Participants, Program Spotlight

The Fourth of July!

Posted on Tuesday, July 7th, 2015 at 6:48 pm.

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J-1 SWT participants from China participate in the annual Fourth of July parade in Gatlinburg, Tennessee.

The Fourth of July, U.S. Independence Day, is quite often the highlight of the J-1 summer, and the holiday leaves a strong impression on our visitors. We love to hear stories of participants being invited to experience the diverse ways in which Americans celebrate this important holiday.  This year, we asked our Summer Work Travel and Camp Counselor sponsors to share some of their favorite Fourth of July moments.  Below is a montage of some of them. These photos illustrate the cultural exchange that happens in neighborhoods all across the country, thanks to the phenomenal exchange visitors and support by local host employers and sponsors that make up the Exchange Visitor Program. Read More ›

Categories: J-1 Visa, Participants, Program Spotlight

Block Island: A Welcoming and Supportive Community for J-1 Exchange Visitors

Posted on Thursday, July 2nd, 2015 at 4:12 pm.

Panoramic view of Block Island, New York

Panoramic view of Block Island, Rhode Island

In this post, my State Department colleague, Nadine Zaatar, describes her recent visit to Block Island, RI, where she met with the local community and J-1 exchange visitors.

J-1 Summer Work Travel participants are lucky to call Block Island home. A truly picturesque isle off the coast of Rhode Island, Block Island is home to over 200 Summer Work Travel (SWT) participants from 19 countries each summer. Block Island also happens to be the home of a volunteer community group with the mission of embracing these participants who help keep the island running during the busiest season. Read More ›

Categories: J-1 Visa, Participants, Program Spotlight

J-1 Orienteering

Posted on Tuesday, June 30th, 2015 at 11:18 am.

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J-1 exchange visitors in front of the New York Public Library during their post-arrival orientation.

As you read this, J-1 SWT participants are landing in airports across the United States and heading to their summer destinations. Some are with friends, some on their own–all with unique expectations. I often remark about how ambitious, outgoing, and ready these students are for adventure. However, I want to see them coming on the program fully prepared for what lies ahead. I know from my own overseas experiences that flying across the world for a brand new experience without proper preparation and expectation-setting can bring on a strong case of nerves, even for the most seasoned traveler. Read More ›

Categories: J-1 Visa, Participants, Program Spotlight

Home is What Lasts in Your Heart: Camp Homeward Bound

Posted on Wednesday, June 24th, 2015 at 12:32 pm.

Camp Homeward Bound J-1 Camp Counselors with Participants

Camp Homeward Bound J-1 Camp Counselors with Participants | Photo Credit: Camp Homeward Bound

I loved being up in New York to kick off  the second summer Route J-1 roadtrip. After a day of inspiration at Liberty Island, I headed upstate to Bear Mountain, NY.  Just an hour or so outside of the Big Apple, and you are in pristine nature.
Read More ›

Categories: J-1 Visa, Participants, Program Spotlight

A Summer of Being

Posted on Tuesday, June 23rd, 2015 at 2:11 pm.

Lady Liberty on Liberty Island

Lady Liberty on Liberty Island

It is now officially summer! This means that I have packed my bags and am hitting Route J-1 for a summer road trip once again.  My staff will be joining in the adventure, and we look forward to showcasing the extraordinary J-1 participants who will make the United States their home this summer.  Read More ›

Categories: J-1 Visa, Participants, Program Spotlight

Remembering the Irish Students

Posted on Wednesday, June 17th, 2015 at 8:18 pm.

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DAS Robin Lerner with J-1 alumni Terry Murray and his wife and Deputy Prime Minister Joan Burton, TD, in Dublin

I was about to post a new blog from New York City kicking off my 2015 Route J-1 summer road trip, but that will have to wait. Today, we are all taking a moment to pay tribute to the Irish J-1 students who lost their lives, and those who were critically injured, when a balcony collapsed in Berkeley, California yesterday. The positive impact of the J-1 Summer Work Travel program on Irish society is simply a fact. I know this firsthand. Last year, I posted a State Department blog post from Dublin, where I met alumni from many generations whose life paths were forever benefited, thanks to their summer in the United States. Read More ›

Categories: J-1 Visa, Participants, Program Spotlight

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About G. Kevin Saba

Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Private Sector Exchange


G. Kevin Saba serves as Acting Deputy Assistant Secretary for Private Sector Exchange at the U.S. Department of State's Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs (ECA). In this capacity, he oversees the Exchange Visitor Program, which brings around 300,000 foreign citizens to the United States annually to teach, study, and build skills. He is the Director for the Policy and Program Support Division in ECA’s Office of Private Sector Exchange.

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