To participant on the Internship, you must

  • Be at least 18 years of age.
  • Be enrolled as a full time student at a recognized Irish third level educational institute or have graduated within 12 months.
  • Be studying towards/have obtained a degree (level 7 or higher) qualification from an Irish University.
  • Hold an Irish passport, or if you are a non-national, be studying towards/completed your entire University course in Ireland.
  • Secure an internship in the USA that is directly related to your field of study and submit a DS7002 Training Plan as completed by your Host Company in the USA
  • Not work in an 'unskilled job' or a prohibited J-1 job as outlined by the US Department of State. You can see a list of these jobs here.
  • If you hold an Irish passport and have graduated from a UK college within the past 12 months, you could also qualify for the Internship programme.  Please email your details to internshipusa@usit.ie for specific eligibility requirements.

If you are not a student or intend to commence your training/visa more than 12 months after completing your coursework, please see the eligibility details for our Professional Career Training USA Programme. This programme allows graduates with at least 12 months of experience in their qualified field or non graduates with at least 5 years of professional experience to obtain a trainee position in the US for up to 18 months.

Previous J-1 Visa Holders

If you have previously participated in the US Work and Travel Programme (WAT), you can apply for the Intern Work & Travel Programme provided you fulfill the requirements listed above.

Please Note: Your visa is issued at the discretion of the US Embassy/Consulate and USIT cannot accept liability should you not be granted a visa. If you are refused a visa, please be aware that full cancellation fees will apply.

Return Evidence

All applicants on the Internship USA programme must have sufficient return evidence in order to be approved by the US Embassy. Return evidence can be a letter from your University/College stating that you will return to resume or continue your studies after your placement. For applicants not intending to return to study, this should be a letter from an Irish employer stating that when you return from the US there will be a job available for you. If you hold a property deed for an Irish property this will also be accepted in some cases.

Under no circumstances should this visa be used as a stepping stone to stay in the US for a longer period of time. If you give any indication to USIT, CIEE, or the US Embassy/Consulate that this is your intention your application will likely be rejected without appeal.

Please note, all return evidence is adjudicated on case by case bases so we can not guarantee the above suggestions will definitely be accepted.  It is the participant's responsibility to convince the US Embassy/Consulate Official that they will abide by the regulations of the programme and return to Ireland at the end of their visa.

Proof of Funds

Your Internship position can be paid or unpaid, but either way, you must show proof that you will have access to at least $1000 for every month of your stay in the US. This can be in the form of original bank statements and/or a Guarantor's letter (See a sample letter under the downloads section above). If your host company has offered you an unpaid position or one whereby you will be receiving less than $1000 per month, you must submit your proof of funds with your application. All applicants must show proof of fund at their US Embassy interview.


Programme Regulations state that you must book your flights and insurance with USIT Travel for all of our USA Programmes. We do not accept concession travel or alternative insurance. These costs are not included in the programme fee and must be booked before and paid for well your embassy interview in order to receive your DS-2019 (please note you cannot sit your interview without this document, so book your flights and insurance sooner rather than later!).

Bear in mind USIT cannot guarantee your application will be approved by CIEE (the partner organization in the US that issues your documents) or by the US embassy when you sit your interview. USIT will book you the most flexible flight available to avoid any disappointment should you need a flight change.