COVID-19 Updates and Information


International Student Employment Information

F-1 students may engage in on-campus employment. Work is limited to on-campus jobs and to no more than 20 hours per week while school is in session. Students may work up to 40 hours on campus during vacation periods, as long as they are registered for the following term. The 20 hour limit applies to assistantships and fellowships as well. Although it is possible, J-1 students typically do not have employment during their program of study.

In order to receive a paycheck, students will need to obtain a Social Security Number (SSN).  You may only receive an SSN if you have an employment offer. 

You will need the following before going to the Social Security Office:                                                                             

  1. A letter from your on-campus employer providing details about your employment; employer name and address, job title and responsibilities, employment start/end dates, number of hours per week and supervisor's name and contact information.

  2. Letter from the Center for International Education stating that you are eligible to work.

Fellowships and Assistantships

Several departments have fellowships and assistantships that are available to international graduate students, depending upon availability. For detailed information and application contact the Office of Graduate Services.

Optional Practical Training

F-1 Students are eligible to apply for up to 12 months of Optional Practical Training that must be related to their field of study. Normally OPT begins after the completion of a degree program, but employment can be part-time during the school year and full-time during periods of vacation. Students need to apply to USCIS for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) card through the CIE.

Curricular Practical Training

CPT is employment that is an integral part of an established program. This must be approved by your department AND CIE before starting any work/internship/training/practicum.

Employment Based on Unforeseen Economic Hardship

A student may apply for this type of employment if there are unforeseen circumstances in the loss of financial support, such as loss of financial aid without fault of the student, substantial fluctuations in the value of currency or exchange rate, increase in tuition or living costs or unexpected changes in the financial condition of the student's financial support. Each type of off-campus employment must be approved by the US Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).