Professional Career Training USA
Why Go & What's Included
Unlock career advancement in the USA!
Our Professional Career Training (PCT) program offers Canadian professionals the chance to grow their careers at US companies while immersing themselves in American culture for up to 20 months. With the J-1 cultural exchange visa for Canadians, you'll receive distinctive training, expand your global network, and get a taste of the American way of life. Gain invaluable training experience in the world's largest economy, keep up with industry trends, and thrive in the dynamic American business scene.
Don't miss this rare chance to gain practical exposure, enhance your international network, and develop skills for your long-term career and travel aspirations.
Support & Documents
- Personalized assistance in reviewing and editing the necessary application forms
- Your J-1 visa and SEVIS (Student and Exchange Visitor Information System) registration
- Your GO SWAP kit, which includes your J-1 visa document, SEVIS receipt, pre-departure and border crossing information, participant handbook that has vital information on SEVIS, SSN, taxes, visa rules and regulations
- Travel insurance that will cover you for your entire time in the US, as mandated by the US government
- Local US visa sponsor who will monitor your traineeship on an ongoing basis, ensuring that it meets your described and agreed upon training plan
- Access to a toll-free, 24/7 emergency number
Thinking about taking the leap? International travel is not without rules. Check these conditions to see if you qualify.
Have a post-secondary degree and 1 year of full-time work experience OR have 5 years of full-time work experience in your field.
Secure a traineeship that is directly related to your field of study/professional work experience.
Canadian passport holders or non-Canadian residents (cannot have attended school or worked professionally in the USA previously)
- Required Savings
You must be able to support yourself during your time in the US and provide proof of financial support (min $1,500 USD/month in the USA). This can be presented via a bank statement or a guarantor letter.
- Criminal Check
Must have no criminal record.
- Health Insurance
Health insurance is provided through Aetna for the duration of your time in the USA.
- Registration Timeline
You are allotted 2-3 weeks to complete your application. After submitting your application, the review process can take 5-6 weeks. Do not make travel or accommodation arrangements until your program coordinator lets you know that everything is good to go.
You can stay in the USA for up to 20 months (18 months of training, 2 months of in-country travel).
- Start Date
You can start at any time of the year!
Depending on the size and annual revenue of your host organization in the USA, our US visa sponsor may arrange a site visit with your employer as part of the approval process for your placement.
Should your SWAP internship coordinator advise that a site visit fee is applicable for your host organization, proceed by clicking the link below.
How to Apply
Training in the USA with SWAP is easy! We encourage you to reach out to us with any inquiries as you prepare to take that first step.
Once you've secured a great placement in the USA, simply download and complete the application form provided below and send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Our coordinator will promptly review your eligibility and guide you from there.
Is a degree necessary to qualify for the Professional Career Training USA program?
No, possessing a post-secondary degree is not a strict requirement for program eligibility. If you do not hold a degree, our US sponsor will evaluate your eligibility based on a minimum of 5 years of full-time professional work experience. We'll ask for a recent copy of your resume to assess your eligibility for the program.
On the other hand, if you do hold a degree, you'll need only 12 months of full-time professional work experience to meet the eligibility criteria.
Will my host organization need to complete a site visit?
A site visit will be necessary under the following circumstances: if your host organization employs 25 or fewer full-time employees, and/or if its annual revenue is less than 3 million. You'll find these specific details outlined in your completed training plan. Rest assured, SWAP will provide guidance on whether a site visit is recommended when we review and submit your application to the sponsor. The cost for a site visit is $400 CAD, in addition to your program fee.
What if I wish to extend my traineeship in the USA?
We'll be thrilled to learn that you're relishing your training placement and are interested in extending your stay! Our team will be there to assist you every step of the way through the extension application process. This ensures that your visa documentation is appropriately updated, granting you the opportunity to continue training in the US. It's important to note that the maximum duration for a training placement is 18 months. For instance, if your initial internship spanned 8 months, you can extend it for up to an additional 10 months.
You will need to apply for the extension at least 6 weeks prior to the end date of your initial DS-2019.