To further strengthen the Mutual Educational and Cultural Exchange Act of 1961, the Intern & Trainee exchange visitor programs strongly encourages you to get involved in the community where you are living so you can experience activities that are typical or representative of the U.S. culture.
As an exchange visitor on the J-1 program, you are required to participate in cultural activities. Cultural activities can include touring the city where you are living, visiting museums, attending a U.S. sporting event, visiting amusement/ theme parks, attending a concert, and many, many other activities. Some cultural activities will cost you money and others are completely free. The purpose of this requirement is for you to see firsthand what the U.S. has to offer.
As discussed in your GEC interview, cultural exchange is the main purpose of this program. During your monthly monitoring contacts, you will be asked to explain and document the cultural activities you have participated in while in the U.S. Participants that are not interested in the cultural component of this program should not apply for sponsorship and may risk sponsorship termination if the choice is made to not to participate in cultural activities.
Americans want to know about you and what your country has to offer. We encourage you to interact with Americans and to feel free to share your culture with those that you come into contact with. You can easily share your culture by discussing your native language, traditional foods, customs and sites of interest.
If you are having difficulty with cultural activity ideas, please contact GEC for assistance.