Requirements & Costs

Trainee Requirements

The SACC-USA Trainee Program is an Equal Opportunity program, subject to J-1 visa regulations. We offer two J-1 visa categories, Intern and Trainee.

Requirements for Intern Category:

  • Be a Swedish or Finnish citizen/permanent resident with the intention of returning to Sweden or Finland
  • Be at least 21 years old
  • Be currently enrolled in and pursuing studies at a degree- or certificate-granting post-secondary (eftergymnasial) academic institution outside the U.S. or have graduated from such an institution within the past 12 months
  • Be fluent in spoken and written English
  • Obtain health and accident insurance for the duration of the training period
  • Follow the training plan developed by the host company
  • An internship may last up to 12 months.

Requirements for the Trainee Category:

  • Be a Swedish or Finnish citizen/permanent resident with the intention of returning to Sweden or Finland
  • Be at least 25 years old
  • Have a degree or professional certificate from a post-secondary (eftergymnasial) academic institution outside the U.S. and at least one year relevant work experience in his or her field, OR
  • No degree and at least five years relevant work experience in his or her field
  • Be fluent in spoken and written English.
  • Obtain health and accident insurance for the duration of the training period
  • Follow the training plan developed by the host company
  • A traineeship may last up to 18 months

Practical implications regarding Exchange Semester and U.S. Degrees:

  • Candidates who meet the above requirements and who are participating in an Exchange Program/Semester in the U.S. are eligible for J-1 visa sponsorship after having spent another semester or  at least 90 days outside the U.S.
  • If your most recent degree was obtained in the U.S. we are unfortunately not able to sponsor a J-1 Visa.

Fees and Costs

The SACC-USA Trainee Program Service fee can be found Excluding the SACC-USA Trainee Program Service fee there is a separate Visa Interview Fee and a SEVIS Fee.

Visa Interview Fee

The trainee is required to pay a fee to the U.S. Embassy in Stockholm or Helsinki before the interview. The fee is around SEK 1,120:- but changes frequently so make sure to check the Embassy’s web page for current Exchange Visitor fee, http://sweden.usembassy.gov/consulate/niv/visa.html. Read the instructions carefully, including  the information about paying the fee via bankgiro. An original receipt, stamped by the bank, should be brought to the interview.

SEVIS Fee

The trainee is  required to pay the so called SEVIS fee of $180. The SEVIS fee is paid directly to the Department of Homeland Security, https://www.fmjfee.com/. This payment is made online. Make sure to print a receipt to bring to the interview.

Insurance

The trainee candidate is required to have health and accident insurance that meets the following minimum requirements:

Medical and Accident:
Medical Evacuation:
Repatriation:
$100,000 per illness/accident
$50,000
$25,000

Compensation

The SACC-USA Trainee Program does not provide insurance and therefore the trainee will have to acquire appropriate coverage. The required health and accident insurance is normally paid by the trainee (but can be paid by the host company). Airfare, housing and living expenses are normally paid by the trainee. Should the trainee fail to submit a Check-in Form to SACC-USA in a timely manner upon arrival in the U.S., a $233 Reinstatement Fee will be payable to the U.S. Department of State.

A Trainee Program Participant is allowed to receive compensation/stipend under a J-1 visa. Most positions in the SACC-USA Trainee Program pay a stipend to cover living expenses. Some pay more. Others such as summer internships may be unpaid. Positions with SACC Regional Chambers are usually unpaid. Unpaid positions may be best suitable for students who are required to do an international internship as part of their course work and thus can get a student loan. Interns/trainees pay federal, state and local tax on the stipend. There is no Social Security or Medicare tax (unless the trainee has lived in the U.S. previously, see the Tax Manual for details).