US Embassy warns J1 hopefuls to apply for visa now
The US Embassy in Dublin is urging potential J1 students to "be proactive and begin the application process as soon as possible" for the summer 2018 programme.
Those hoping to take the traditional Stateside trip for J1 Summer Work Travel (SWT) or Camp Counselor programme for next year are being encouraged to apply now.
There will be a total of 7,000 J-1 SWT slots available in 2018, the same number as 2017.
Last year the Embassy was forced to work through a six- to seven-week backlog in processing applications.
The delay originated with a new US security system, SEVIS, which was introduced in the wake of September 11 to screen students travelling to work and study in the US.
A notice on the embassy's website said early flight departures along with the late receipt of cases from programme sponsors meant "a high percentage" of students preparing to travel would not be able to do so.
The Embassy hopes to avoid delays this year by encouraging J1 hopefuls to apply now.
The J1 program in Ireland is more than 50 years old, with over 160,000 past Irish participants in total.
A list of organisations that recruit most of the J-1 participants from Ireland can be found here.