Tenure Track Faculty
We commonly see tenure track faculty at Brandeis pursue an H-1B visa. Occasionally, they may use J-1 Academic Training if they currently hold a J-1 student visa. (Please note the J-1 student category is not the same as the J-1 scholar category.) The ISSO will be able to help determine the most appropriate visa category after we see an appointment letter and obtain information from the prospective employee.
To obtain an appointment letter for faculty, please contact Office of the Dean of Arts and Sciences (Attention: Lorna Laurent or Heather Young) for verification and approval. After the official letter of appointment is issued, the dean's office will send a copy to the ISSO to begin discussions with the host department and faculty appointee concerning visa options.
The H-1B program applies to employers seeking to hire nonimmigrant aliens as workers in specialty occupations of distinguished merit and ability. A specialty occupation is one that requires the application of a body of highly specialized knowledge and the attainment of at least a bachelor’s degree or its equivalent. The intent of the H-1B provisions is to help employers who cannot otherwise obtain needed business skills and abilities from the U.S. workforce by authorizing the temporary employment of qualified individuals who are not otherwise authorized to work in the United States.
H-1B sponsorship may be used for a variety of roles at Brandeis that match the above requirements. The requests for sponsorship are evaluated on a case-by-case basis by the ISSO. In some cases, H-1B sponsorship may not be possible if the job requirements or the employee's education and experience do not meet the requirement of “Specialty Occupation.” The process of preparing an H-1B application involves the ISSO doing a complete analysis of the specialty occupation criteria, and ensuring the job meets U.S. Department of Labor regulations about occupations and minimum salary requirements.
The hiring department pays all immigration fees involved in the process. The $460 application fee is needed for all applications; the $500 anti-fraud fee is needed for new applications (not needed for an H-1B extension); the $2,500 premium processing fee is needed for most cases if the prospective employee is expected to start employment in less than 6 months. Please consult the ISSO if you have questions about the fee.
While tenure track faculty may not use the Research Scholar or Professor categories for their Brandeis sponsorship, a recent graduate of a U.S. institution who is eligible for Academic Training may occasionally, use Academic Training at the beginning of their tenure track appointment. This is also subject to the approval of the institution that sponsors the J-1 visa. If approved by the ISSO, the department should fill out the Department Portal Form to hire a faculty who wishes to use J-1 Academic Training.
Occasionally, an F-1 visa holder who is authorized for OPT/STEM OPT will take on a faculty role. If an individual's diploma will be issued in the summer preceding the first day of work at Brandeis, the employee is required to apply for OPT and use it for the initial 6-8 months. The ISSO will then advise on when to file an H-1B or seek another immigration status accordingly. The ISSO can work with the department and the faculty at least 7-9 months prior to their OPT/STEM OPT end date to determine the next steps.
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