Exchange Visitor and Host Support
What CAEP Expects From Hosts?
Training Plan Information
How CAEP Recruits Exchange Visitors
Exchange Visitor Placement Process
What is the Difference Between an "Intern" and a "Trainee"?
What you can expect from CAEP?
- Exchange visitor participants will generally be between the ages of 18-28 (although enology applicants are typically between 21-35 years of age)
- Applicant has at least one year of practical experience in the field of requested training
- The applicant will have a basic understanding of the English language
- CAEP partners with its country offices to review and interview the prospective exchange visitors to determine if they can qualify for the program. CAEP also provides general guidance on the CAEP program and regulations. If there is no country office in the applicant's home country, CAEP will instruct and interview the applicant via its closest regional office or its corporate office in the United States
- CAEP will make the best possible placement with the information provided to us
- CAEP will prepare the paperwork necessary for the exchange visitor to obtain the cultural training visa
- CAEP will contact hosts regarding the exchange visitor’s arrival details
- CAEP will ensure the exchange visitor has an adequate medical/accident and travel insurance upon arrival in hosting country
- CAEP will contact the host and exchange visitor following the exchange visitor’s arrival (and throughout the program) to answer questions. This follow-up may include an on-site visit and an informational seminar (mandatory)
- CAEP will provide the host and exchange visitor with helpful handbooks to reference
- Hosts may reach CAEP at a toll-free phone number (USA)
- CAEP will send host 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 to the program
- Hosting an exchange visitor offers the unique benefit of cultural exchange. We expect that CAEP hosts are interested in more than merely acquiring an additional employee and will treat an exchange visitor differently than a typical employee. Hosts often find they learn as much from the exchange visitor as the exchange visitor learns from the host
- CAEP must have a complete, updated hosting application form and training plan on file. A training plan must list the skills to be learned by the exchange visitor on a month-by-month basis.
- All CAEP hosts automatically become members of the non-profit membership organization, Communicating for America (CA). 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 exchange visitor placement (one waived placement fee with CA membership)
- $75.00 per month/per exchange visitor administrative fee
- Hosts are required to assist with room and board for the exchange visitor
- Exchange visitors should be allowed- on average- 1½ day off per week. Participants in the United States, are to receive a 3 week unpaid vacation time during their stay of six months or more
- Hosts are responsible for obtaining worker's compensation or sufficient liability insurance as required in your state
- Host will withhold income taxes from the exchange visitor - however, you will not be withholding or paying FICA/FUTA taxes
- Hosts will assist the exchange visitor in attending possible CAEP-sponsored seminars and events. CAEP will make every effort to schedule these to accommodate host needs
- The Fair Labor Standard Act applies to agriculture exchange programs
The U.S. Department of State sets the rules and guidelines for all exchange visitor programs. The State Department requires each CAEP exchange visitor to have a completed, current training plan on file. The training plan is a "syllabus" of the training you offer at your operation.
At a minimum, training plans should include:
- Description of the exchange visitors role
- Specific tasks and activities to be completed
- Specific goals and objectives
- Knowledge, skills, or techniques to be imparted
- Description of how the exchange visitor will be supervised and evaluated
- Cultural activities
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 the exchange visitor and builds an online resume, which the participant may 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 who describe specialized training opportunities or unique aspects of a host operation that can be shared with exchange visitors
When you accept a participant’s application for a program with your operation/business, CAEP includes information about the hosting business in the form of a placement advice. This sets realistic expectations for both exchange visitor and host regarding the nature of the placement. The exchange visitor will also receive information (including contact information) about the host, whether in the area, community events, and equipment they may use during the placement.
We strongly encourage contact between the host and exchange applicant during the placement process so that questions may be answered and a relationship can be established before the final commitment to the program and each other.
- Established country offices and partners promote our program and provide information to universities and agriculture communities in other countries
- Past exchange visitors may recommend the CAEP program to friends or has become a paid CAEP recruiter
- Hosts may find an exchange visitor applicant independently through personal contacts, friends of the family, or international participants they've hosted previously
- Exchange visitors may independently contact a business requesting to be a part of their training/intern program
- Potential exchange visitors 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 Exchange Visitors to find someone they can trust for assistance in coming to the U.S. Sponsoring organizations like CA can navigate hosts and Exchange Visitor s through the process efficiently- while answering questions and offering support along the way. If an Exchange Visitor 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 their concerns before their arrival in the U.S., including application completion, travel arrangements, fee collection, and visa validation. CAEP secures placement for the Exchange Visitor, issues the DS-2019 (visa application), and becomes their primary source of support upon their arrival in the U.S. and throughout their stay.
Many hosts wish their Exchange Visitors could come immediately; however, there are many necessary steps to be taken by your Exchange Visitor, the country office/partner and CAEP before your they 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 Exchange Visitors have gone through the required procedures before our issuing the DS-2019 (visa application forms).
The following is an example of a "typical" Exchange Visitor placement process:
- Exchange Visitors 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 exchange visitor
- 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 exchange visitor 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 exchange visitor meets the guidelines of the CAEP program, the coordinator sends the application to a potential host
- If the exchange visitor 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 exchange visitor by the host and a signed training plan (DS-7002), CAEP passes the placement information along to the country office/partner or directly to them
- Upon acceptance of the placement by the exchange visitor CAEP must confirm how and when they will pay their administrative fee and confirm they have made arrangements for the proper insurance coverage
- We then ship the exchange visitor DS-2019 to the appropriate country office/partner or directly to them
- The exchange visitor must interview at a U.S. Consulate/Embassy 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 six weeks. Some applicants may be asked to return for a second interview or submit additional documents which will further delay their arrival
- Once an exchange visitor 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, and order insurance for the exchange visitor
- They will typically arrive at the airport closest to your operation/where you live
As a host, you must supply or help the exchange visitor to find adequate living accommodations.
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 a vacuum cleaner, broom, and other cleaning materials
- Access to a washing machine, detergent/bleach, and clothesline or dryer.
- Access to a storm shelter
- Access to a telephone
- Access to safe and secure storage for personal belongings
- Smoke alarms and fire extinguisher.
- An intern is a current student/vocational training or recent graduate (within 12 months) with at least one year of practical experience
- A trainee is a university/ vocational training graduate with at least one year of practical experience OR, at least five years of practical experience instead of a degree.