Basic Requirements for a Position to be Sponsored by USC

Federal regulations and USC policies and practices limit the types of positions we can sponsor for work visas.  In general:

  • The position must be full-time.
  • The position must be fully benefits eligible.
  • The position must meet the regulatory definition of “professional” and “specialized”, i.e. it must require at minimum a bachelor’s degree in a specialty field as the normal requirement for entry into that occupation.
  • The position must pay as regulations require for that type of work visa, and the hiring department must meet or exceed the required wage.


All full-time instructional positions covered in the Faculty Handbook are eligible.

View the Faculty Handbook »

Research Staff

Research Associate and above, including research specialists and research faculty.


Not all types of Postdocs qualify. “Postdoctoral Scholar – Research Associate” positions qualify if they meet the baseline requirements above. For other types of Postdocs, please inquire with the Office of International Services (OIS) about sponsoring a Postdoc under a J-1 visa.

Visit the OIS J-1 page »

Technical Staff

Computer, business and related technical specialties can qualify, but they must meet the baseline requirements above.


Most positions will qualify, if they require at minimum a bachelor’s degree in a specialty field plus experience.

Types of positions we are unable to sponsor

  • Positions that do not require, at minimum, a bachelor’s degree in a specialty field.
  • General administrative positions, or those that do not meet the regulatory minimum requirements for a professional, specialty field.  If a Bachelor’s degree is required, but the field is not specified, or if the job could be equally well filled by individuals with bachelor’s degrees in a variety of unrelated fields, it will not qualify.
  • Positions that are not paid solely by USC payroll – for example, Fellowships and similar positions where 3rd parties pay stipends, etc.