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To promote and encourage interaction in research and education with ophthalmology institutions throughout the world, the UCLA Stein Eye Institute offers International Ophthalmology Fellowships consisting of one-year programs of study under the supervision of specific Institute faculty. Candidates for these international fellowships are often nominated by institutions outside the United States. Some apply to the program on their own. Fellows participate in the clinical and research activities of ophthalmic subspecialties according to their training needs. When training is completed, the International Fellow is issued a Certificate of Fellowship by the Stein Eye Institute.

Our International Fellows


The deadline for applications to our international fellowship program, is September 1, 2016 for the 2017-2018 academic year but may vary within Divisions. Please check with the appropriate fellowship program directly.

NOTE: International fellowship applications for the 2016-2017 academic year are now closed.

Fellowship Requirements
Subspecialty Areas
Application Process
International Fellowship Application
J-1 Visa Application
Section 2111 Appointment Application
» More Information
» Quick Reference for Eligibility

Fellowship Requirements
Requirements for international fellowships at the Stein Eye Institute:

International fellows are required to have a UCLA-sponsored J-1 visa. A J-1 visa sponsored by the ECFMG program or any other entity does not qualify. Fellows who plan to have clinical activity must also obtain a Section 2111 appointment from the California Medical Board. The International Fellowship in Ophthalmic Pathology is an exception. A Section 2111 appointment allows international fellows to have limited contact (up to 20% of the fellow's time) with patients under the direct supervision of a licensed medical faculty member.

International fellowships at the Stein Eye Institute are generally non-funded. Fellows must bring financial support from their home institution or other sources. UCLA requires that international fellows document the availability of sufficient funds to cover living expenses for one year including lodging, food, medical and repatriation insurance, and travel expenses before it will issue a J-1 visa.

Living Expenses

International fellows must maintain health and repatriation insurance while at UCLA. Arrangements for insurance should be made prior to arrival in the United States.

Health and Repatriation Insurance

International fellows need to speak English well enough to communicate independently with patients and staff.

Subspecialty Areas
International ophthalmology fellowships are offered by the Institute in the following subspecialty areas:

Cataract Research
Cornea-External Ocular Disease, Uveitis and Refractive Surgery Research
Glaucoma Research
Medical Retina Research
Neuro-Ophthalmology Research
Ophthalmic Pathology
Orbital and Ophthalmic Plastic Surgery Research
Pediatric Ophthalmology and Strabismus Research
Vitreoretinal Diseases and Surgery Research

Application Process
Each international fellowship program has its own fellowship coordinator. The names of the coordinators are listed at the top of each fellowship description page. Application materials should be sent to a fellowship coordinator, not the program director, unless the two are the same. All correspondence regarding a specific fellowship program should be sent to the coordinator of that program.

The process of applying for an International Fellowship at the Stein Eye Institute involves the completion of three separate applications, one for the fellowship itself, one for a J-1 visa (DS-2019 form) and one for a Section 2111 appointment. Links below contain all of the necessary forms and instructions. Microsoft Word is required to complete the applications. Successful application requires meticulous attention to details.

Most international fellowship program directors accept only one international fellow per year. No guarantee regarding the availability of a position can be made until all applications and supporting documents are received. The absolute deadline for receipt of materials is March 1 of the year the international fellowship starts. Because requests for additional information from the Office of the Dean at the UCLA School of Medicine occur frequently, the applicant is urged to submit all application materials by the beginning of December, the year before the fellowship starts to allow adequate response time.

International Fellowship Application
Complete and sign the international fellowship application and return it to the fellowship coordinator. A passport size color photograph must be attached. A copy of the applicant's most recent curriculum vitae (CV) in Microsoft Word must be e-mailed to the fellowship coordinator.

Download International Fellowship Application

J-1 Visa Application
On the J-1 visa application (DS-2019 form), complete sections A (the number of accompanying family members), B (leave the US address blank unless you have one already), C (if applicable), E and G on part I of the form. The form is a Microsoft Word template. Complete all of part II. Do not print or sign the document. Send it to the fellowship coordinator by e-mail so that he or she can complete the rest of part I. The completed application will be sent to you by regular mail for signature. When you return the signed J-1 visa application (DS-2019 form) by regular mail, several supporting documents must be returned with it.

A check for $150 made payable to the "UC Regents" must be submitted to cover processing costs. If a spouse or other dependent family members will accompany you on a J-2 visa, an additional check for $100 must be submitted.

A printed copy of your most recent curriculum vitae (CV) must be submitted.

Documentation that there are funds to support your living expenses must be submitted.

A signed copy of the Health and Repatriation Insurance Form must be submitted.
Copies of the passport identification pages of the applicant and any dependent family members must be submitted.

Again, no documents should be mailed until you have made e-mail contact with the fellowship coordinator, completed the initial sections of the DS-2019 form and received a printed copy of the completed application in the mail.

Download J-1 Visa Application (DS-2019 Form)
Download Instructions for Completing DS-2019
Download Health and Repatriation Insurance Form

Section 2111 Appointment Application
Complete all sections of the 2111 appointment application. The form is a Microsoft Word template. Print and sign the application. Return it with two passport size color photographs. Additionally, all of the following supporting documents must be submitted.

A printed copy of your most recent curriculum vitae (CV) must be submitted.

A copy of your medical school diploma in the language of the country of your training, along with a literal word-for-word English translation, if the diploma is not in English. The State of California does not accept a Certificate of Graduation in place of a medical school diploma. A copy of the English translation alone is not sufficient; copies of both the original language diploma and the translation are required.

A copy of your license to practice medicine issued by your home country, with an English translation. A translation alone is not sufficient. If the home country does not have a license, a letter from the agency or hospital that gives the applicant the right to practice medicine is required.

A Letter of Good Standing or Certificate of Good Standing, with an English translation, from the Ministry of Health or Medical Council that issued the license to practice medicine. Letters from employers are not acceptable, unless the applicant is from the People's Republic of China. The letter must state that "no disciplinary actions" have been taken against the physician, and it must be dated within the last 90 days.
A copy of your Residency Training Certificate or written verification that you have completed 3 years of basic residency training. If the original language is not in English, an English translation is required.
" Verification that you are board-eligible, board-certified or equivalent in ophthalmology.
If you are already in the United States, a copy of your I-94 arrival document must be submitted.
If you are already on a J-1 visa, a copy of your DS-2019 form must be submitted.
If you are in the United States on another type of non-immigrant or immigrant visa, a copy of the Approval Notice issued by the US Immigration and Naturalization Service, or other documents verifying the applicant's status such as Resident Alien Card, Employment Authorization Card, etc must be provided.
A check for $350 made payable to the "UC Regents" must be submitted to cover processing costs.

Download Section 2111 Appointment Application

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