Students on F-1 or J-1 visas have the opportunity to engage in on-campus work or off-campus practical training opportunities. However, the appropriate work authorization must be obtained before starting to work. Students on visas other than F-1 or J-1 should consult an OISS advisor to learn about eligibility for employment authorization. Regardless of visa status, if you work even one day without authorization, you must leave the U.S. or face deportation.
For F-1 and J-1 students, on-campus work is limited to part-time (20 hours or less per week) during the fall and spring semesters when school is in session. It may be full-time (more than 20 hours per week) during the summer and official school breaks. Click here to find available on-campus jobs. Remember to complete proper paperwork with the Payroll Office before starting any on-campus employment.
Important Note: Weekly work hours cannot be averaged. For example, if you work 5 hours this week, you still cannot work 25 hours next week. Anything over 20 hours of work in any week will jeopardize your status.
F-1 students: On-campus work does not require special authorization as long as you maintain your valid status.
J-1 students: On-campus work does require prior authorization from an OISS advisor. Click here for the J-1 Student On-Campus Employment Authorization Form. Please call to set up an appointment with an OISS advisor if you have any questions.
The handouts below describe eligibility requirements and application procedures for each type of work authorization for F-1 and J-1 students. You may also visit OISS to pick up a complete application packet. For visa types other than F-1 or J-1, please contact OISS to learn more about work authorization eligibility.
F-1 Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
F-1 Curricular Practical Training (CPT) Tutorial
F-1 Curricular Practical Training (CPT) Form for Undergraduates
F-1 Curricular Practical Training (CPT) Form for Graduate Students
F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT)
F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT) Tutorial
F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT) Handout
Cover Letter Template for OPT Application
Tips on completing the I-765 for OPT application
OPT Priority Processing information page
F-1 OPT STEM Extension