O-1 Aliens of Extraordinary Ability

The O-1 nonimmigrant category is for individuals who possess extraordinary ability in the sciences, arts, education, business, or athletics, or who have demonstrated extraordinary achievement in the motion picture or television industry. To qualify for an O-1 in the Sciences, Business, or Athletics, a person must have either of the following:

  • Receipt of a major, internationally-recognized award (e.g. the Nobel Prize) or
  • Meet at least three of the following criteria:
    • Receipt of nationally or internationally recognized prizes or awards for excellence in his/her field.
    • Membership in an association in the field which requires outstanding achievements of its members, as judged by national or international experts in the field.
    • Published material in professional or major trade publications or major media, concerning the person’s work.
    • Authorship of scholarly articles in professional journals or other major media.
    • Participation on a panel, or individually, as a judge of the work of others in the field.
    • Employment in a critical or essential capacity for organizations and establishments that have a distinguished reputation.
    • High salary or other renumeration commanded by the person for services.
    • Other comparable evidence.

O-1 Petitions at UCSC

If your academic department is interested in pursuing O-1 sponsorship on your behalf, please contact the International Scholar Advisor at ischolar@ucsc.edu for more information. Processing of an O-1 petition can take six months or more and require substantial evidentiary documentation. A review of your CV will be necessary to determine your eligibility. 

Last modified: Jun 09, 2023