Trainee and Host Support
What CAEP Expects From Hosts?
Training Plan Information
How CAEP Recruits Trainees
Trainee Placement Process
What is the Difference Between an "Intern" and a "Trainee"?
What you can expect from CAEP?
- Trainees will generally be between the ages of 18-28 (although Enology trainees are typically between 21-35 years of age). Exceptions can be made by mutual agreement.
- Trainees will have at least 1 year of practical experience in the field of requested training
- Trainees will have a basic understanding of English
- Trainees will be in good health
- CAEP partners with its country offices to review and interview the prospective trainee in order to determine if they are acceptable for the program. CAEP also provides general guidance on the CAEP program and visa rules. If there is no country office in the applicant's home country, CAEP will instruct and interview the trainee via its closest regional office or its corporate office in the USA.
- CAEP will make the best possible placement with the information provided to us.
- CAEP will prepare the paperwork necessary for the trainee to obtain a J-1 training visa.
- CAEP will contact hosts regarding the trainee's arrival details.
- CAEP will ensure trainee has adequate medical/accident and travel insurance upon arrival. If a trainee cannot obtain this on their own, we will obtain it for them.
- CAEP will contact the host and trainee following the trainee's arrival (and throughout the trainee's stay) to answer questions. This follow-up may include an on-site supervision visit and an informational trainee seminars (mandatory).
- CAEP will provide host and trainee with helpful handbooks to reference.
- Hosts can reach CAEP at a toll-free number (USA)
- CAEP will send hosts an evaluation forms soliciting feedback regarding the placement made and the assistance received from CAEP.
- CAEP will send a host newsletter including updates about any new changes
- Hosting offers the unique benefit of cultural exchange. We expect that CAEP hosts are interested in more than merely acquiring an additional employee, and that they will treat a trainee differently than a typical employee. Hosts often find they learn as much from their trainee as the trainee learns from them!
- CAEP must have a complete, updated hosting application form and training plan on file. A training plan must list the skills imparted to the trainee on a month-by-month basis.
- All CAEP hosts automatically become members of the non-profit worldwide membership organization called Communicating for America (CA). The nominal membership fee enables these programs to exist, so timely payment of the membership fee is important. Because CAEP allows each host a waiver of one placement fee, the annual membership fee is offset entirely. Hosts will receive a membership package explaining the benefits of the CA membership.
- Hosting Fee Details:
- $96.00 CA annual membership fee
- $100.00 placement fee for each trainee (one waived placement fee with CA membership)
- $75.00 per month/per trainee administrative fee *You do not need to send any payment with your application. You will not be billed until your approved trainee arrives.
- Hosts must provide their trainee with a reasonable stipend at least once per month. At minimum, the stipend must be the minimum wage rate in the hosts's area, multiplied by the average number of hours per week. This typically works out to a minimum of $900/month plus an extra stipend for room and board as necessary.
- Hosts are required to provide room and board to their trainee. The minimum food allowance is $200.00 per month. Please see the Accommodation Guidelines section of this page for more information.
- Trainees will participate at an operation approximately 55 hours per week (40 hours of work and 15 hours of training). We understand these hours may vary. Trainees must be compensated for additional hours worked.
- Trainees should be allowed- on average- 1½ days off per week. Trainees in the U.S. for six months or more are entitled to 3 weeks of unpaid holiday time during their stay. This time is to be agreed upon by trainee and host beforehand.
- Hosts are responsible to obtain worker's compensation or sufficient liability insurance as required in your state. You also will withhold taxes from your trainee- however, you will not be withholding or paying FICA taxes for your trainees.
- Hosts will assist trainee in attending CAEP-sponsored seminars and events. CAEP will make every effort to schedule these to accommodate host needs.
The U.S. Department of State sets the rules and guidelines for all exchange visitor programs. The State Department requires each CAEP participant to have a completed, current training plan on file. The training plan is a "syllabus" of the training you offer at your operation. At minimum, training plans should include:
- Description of trainee's role
- Specific tasks and activities to be completed
- Specific goals and objectives
- Knowledge, skills, or techniques to be imparted
- Description of how the trainee will be supervised and evaluated
The training plan is taken to the embassy during the applicant's visa appointment on an official government form called a Training/Internship Placement Plan- or DS-7002. To assist with the creation of a training plan that meets the standards of the U.S. Department of State, CAEP has developed "Skillability." This online skill database tracks the skills offered by hosts to participants and builds an online resume- which the participant can use for future employment around the world.
The CAEP hosting application will ask you to develop your unique training plan using CAEP "standard skills" as well as personalized skills created by you. This will reflect the unique training experience offered at your operation.
- CAEP Standard Skills: A list, compiled by CAEP, of basic and commonly-learned skills for each CAEP program.
- Personalized Skills: Skills created and defined by hosts which describe specialized training opportunities or unique aspects of a host operation that are able to be shared with participants.
When you accept a participant to be placed with your operation, they receive specific information about their U.S. placement- including the training plan you, their host, has created. This sets realistic expectations for both trainee and host regarding the nature of the placement. The trainee will also receive information (including contact information) about the host family, weather in the area, community events, and equipment the trainee may use during the the placement.
We strongly encourage contact between the host and trainee prior to the trainee's arrival so that questions may be answered and a relationship may be established prior to the host or trainee making the final commitment to the program and to each other.
- Established country offices and partners promote our program and provide information to universities and agriculture communities in other countries.
- Past participants may recommend the CAEP program to friends, or has become a paid CAEP recruiter (learn how you can become a CAEP recruiter).
- Hosts may find a trainee independently through personal contacts, friends of the family, or trainees/international workers they've hosted previously.
- Trainees may independently contact a U.S. operation requesting to be a part of their training/intern program.
- Potential trainees may contact CAEP directly through the CAEP website, social media forum, or other marketing channels.
In all of these cases, CAEP can assist! It can be extremely difficult to host a citizen of another country legally. Similarly, it can prove difficult for potential trainees to find someone they can trust for assistance in coming to the U.S. Sponsoring organizations like CA can navigate hosts and trainees through the process efficiently- while answering questions and offering support along the way. If a trainee is interested in applying for the CAEP program, we will refer them to the CAEP office or CAEP partner in their home country to begin the paperwork process. Our offices and partners handle the majority of the trainee's concerns prior to their arrival in the U.S., including application completion, travel arrangements, fee collection and visa validation. CAEP secures a placement for the trainee, issues the DS-2019 (visa application), and becomes the trainee's primary source of support upon their arrival in the U.S. and throughout the duration of their stay.
Many hosts wish their trainee could come immediately; however, there are many necessary steps to be taken by your trainee, the country office/partner and CAEP before your trainee can arrive in the U.S. We are not a job service- rather, we are an exchange program overseen by the U.S. Department of State. We must take the time to ensure all trainees have gone through the required procedures prior to our issuing the DS-2019 (visa application forms).
The following is an example of a "typical" trainee's placement process:
- Trainee receives online paperwork and information from our country office/partner organization, completes paperwork online and submits it to them.
- The country office/partner reviews the paperwork and interviews the trainee.
- The paperwork is sent electronically to our office in Fergus Falls, MN for processing.
- The paperwork is passed along to the proper program coordinator.
- If the trainee has applied directly, the above is handled solely by the CAEP office in Fergus Falls, MN.
- After ensuring all required documents have been submitted and the trainee meets the guidelines of the CAEP program, the coordinator sends the application to a potential host.
- If the trainee is "pre-placed," (i.e. has independently approached a business that is not a CAEP host) that business must go through the process of applying to become a CAEP host. This includes the completion of a hosting business application, training plan and an interview with a CAEP coordinator.
- After receiving acceptance of the trainee by the host and a signed training plan (DS-7002), CAEP passes the placement information along to the country office/partner or directly to the trainee.
- Upon acceptance of the placement by the trainee, CAEP must confirm how and when the trainee will pay their administrative fee and confirm they have made arrangements for the proper insurance coverage.
- We then send the trainee's DS-2019 to the appropriate country office/partner or directly to the trainee.
- The trainee must interview at a U.S. Consulate/Embassy (except for Canadian applicants) and have their DS-2019 validated by an Embassy/Consulate official (a Canadian's paperwork is validated upon arrival in the USA). Depending on the country from which the applicant is applying and time of the year, this process may take 2-6 weeks. Some applicants may be asked to return for a second interview or submit additional documents which will further delay the trainee's arrival.
- Once a trainee has their validated DS-2019, they are free to make travel arrangements to the U.S., which are passed along to the CAEP office. CAEP will then pass this information along to you, the host.
- Trainees will typically arrive at the airport closest to your operation/where you live.
As a host you must supply- or help your trainee locate- adequate living accommodations. This can be achieved in several different ways. If living accommodations are provided outside the home, the trainee must be compensated adequately above the minimum allowance to pay for his/her lodging and food expenses.
Appropriate Living Guidelines:
- A bed, chair, desk or writing table, chest of drawers and closet as minimum furnishings
- Bedding (sheets, blankets, pillow) and towels, shower or bathing facilities and sink with hot and cold running water
- Toilet facilities with adequate sewage disposal
- Access to cooking facilities and a refrigerator (if meals are not provided)
- Safe drinking water
- Access to vacuum cleaner, broom and other cleaning materials
- Access to a washing machine, detergent/bleach, and clothesline or dryer (if laundry is not done by the host)
- Access to a storm shelter
- Access to a telephone
- Access to safe and secure storage for personal belongings
- An intern is a current student or recent graduate (within 12 months) with at least one year of practical experience.
- A trainee is a university graduate with at least one year of practical experience OR, at least five years of practical experience in lieu of a degree.
- A trainee's training plan will be more in-depth than that of an intern.