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Equal Opportunity & Regulatory Compliance
University of Mississippi

Hiring Guidance Updates: Visa Sponsorship   


The University of Mississippi hiring processes aim to connect qualified candidates to dynamic jobs available at UM. Many times, a thorough job search includes candidates who may require visa sponsorship to work in the United States. In order to facilitate thorough evaluation of candidates and to ensure an efficient and successful hiring process, UM HR is updating the job application to gather this information.   

 Beginning May 1st, 2024, UM’s job application will include two new questions:  

  1. Are you currently eligible to work in the United States?  
  1. Do you now or in the future require visa sponsorship to continue working in the United States?  

These will be identified as optional questions in ConnectU for job candidates to answer in the application process.  Once the finalists for the job are established, the Search Committee Chair should ensure that all final candidates have answered the questions on the application; if they have not, a designated Search Committee member should ask the candidates the two designated questions and document their answers.    


Once the final preferred job candidate is identified, the Search Committee Chair should review that candidate’s answers to these questions. If the answers indicate the need for sponsorship, the Search Committee Chair should email the candidate and ask them to explain the need for sponsorship to for additional support in reviewing the required time and cost of sponsorship for that particular preferred job candidate.   


Before any offer is made to the candidate, the Search Committee should ensure that they have worked with International Student & Scholar Services to discuss the feasibility of the time and cost associated with sponsorship of their preferred candidate and confirm they can commit to that time and cost. Once that has been confirmed, the offer can be made through the standard HR process and International Student & Scholar Services will be included on the offer approval form.  


Summary of Steps:  

  • Candidates will be asked two sponsorship-related questions on the application  
  • When finalists are identified, the Search Committee should ensure that those finalists have answered the questions  
  • When one preferred candidate is identified, the Search Committee should review that candidate’s answers. If the candidate needs sponsorship, ask the candidate to provide an explanation of the need for sponsorship and send it to for review.   
  • The committee should also send the job description, candidate’s name and explanation of the role so that ISSS has context for their review.  
  • Committee will work with ISSS and HR to onboard the candidate, provided that the time and cost associated with the candidate are feasible.   


 Please keep in mind: 

  • While a department may decide that the time or cost associated with sponsorship makes them unable to consider a candidate who is in need of sponsorship, the University cannot consider national origin, citizenship, or race in hiring decisions.   
  • Do not make assumptions about someone’s citizenship or need for sponsorship based on their name, address, places lived, schools attended, or any information other than their answers to the designated questions.   
  • While the two specific questions on the job application may be asked, the committee should not ask any additional questions of the candidate related to the need for sponsorship, citizenship, national origin, etc.  
  • If you have questions about the time or cost associated with sponsorship, please contact the International Student & Scholar Services office to provide factual, clear guidance on what is involved in providing sponsorship for an employee. Depending on the nature of the sponsorship needed, timeline and costs vary, but typically range between no cost to approximately $3765 over a period of three years.  

Any questions can be directed to HR Recruiting (, Equal Opportunity & Regulatory Compliance (, or International Student and Scholar Services (