Students are not required or expected to work while they are attending a college or university in the United States. Working on campus is permitted for non-citizens on student visas without special permission from the Department of Homeland Security, U.S. Citizenship, or the Department of State.
International students can work on campus for up to 20 hours per week during the regular semester. International students on student visas are not authorized to work off campus unless authorized through the Center for Global Engagement or the United States Citizenship & Immigration Services.
F-1 students do not need any special authorization to work on-campus. J-1 students must be authorized for on-campus employment in their J-1 SEVIS record.
International students must have authorization to work off-campus. Students that begin work prior to receiving written authorization are in violation of their student visa status. Please contact our office if you have any questions.
Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is work training that is an integral part of an established curriculum, this includes: “alternate work/study, internship, cooperative education, or any other type of required internship or practicum which is offered by sponsoring employers through cooperative agreements with the school.” CPT is available only prior to the completion of a degree program and the student must have a job offer for CPT at the time of application. CPT employment may not delay completion of the academic program.
Optional Practical Training (OPT)
Optional Practical Training (OPT) is temporary employment authorization available to F-1 degree-seeking students after completion of all course requirements for the degree listed on their I-20 (excluding thesis). Upon approval from USCIS, a student can work for an initial period of up to 12 months.
F-1 students approved for standard post-completion optional practical training based on a degree in a STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) field that appears on the DHS STEM-Designated Degree Program List can apply to USCIS for a one-time 24-month extension of post-completion OPT (for a total eligibility of up to 36 months).
J-1 students who plan to complete an internship may request Academic Training.