Q1 visa

When a Language Immersion School Program May Qualify as an International Cultural Exchange Program (Q1)

On October 24, 2016, the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) issued a Policy Memorandum (PM-602-0138) designating a decision of the Administrative Appeals Office (AAO) as an adopted decision. I explains that where a language immersion school program meets the regulatory requirements, it may be eligible for designation as an international cultural exchange program, allowing it to petition to classify teachers as Q1 international cultural exchange visitors. In this article, we will examine the facts and procedural history of the Matter of R-C-C-S-D-, the AAO’s analysis and decision, and the effect that designating this as an adopted decision will have on the Q1 international cultural exchange program going forward.

Q1 Cultural Exchange Visitors

The Q1 visa is a temporary nonimmigrant work visa for international cultural exchange visitors. In addition to being an employment-oriented program, Q1 nonimmigrants must communicate about their cultural attributes as part of the qualifying exchange program. In this article we will examine the requirements for Q1 status, the rules for being on Q1 status, and options for the spouse or minor child(ren) of a Q1 nonimmigrant to gain nonimmigrant status in the United States.