F-1 Employment Options
Since you are in the U.S. with the principal purpose of pursuing a full course of study or academic program, your employment options are very limited. Before engaging in any type of employment–paid or non-paid; on-campus or off-campus–you must first be clearly informed on what are the options and eligibility requirements.
Important About Employment, Internships or Volunteer Activities-Paid or Unpaid
- Obtain proper authorization before engaging in any off-campus employment whether the employment is paid or non-paid. (Working without proper authorization constitutes illegal employment, an offense that can lead to deportation.)
- Refrain from any on-campus employment if/while you are out-of-status.
- ALWAYS check with the ISSS BEFORE you engage in anything resembling employment, internships, co-op experience, whether paid or unpaid. Avoid putting your immigration status at risk!
- If you register for a course that consists of an internship, any kind of employment on or off campus, co-op experience, paid or unpaid, or that it has the word “internship” in the name of the course. you MUST visit the ISSS Office IMMEDIATELY to obtain approval. Failure to do so may lead to very serious violations of immigration policies.
- If you are planning to engage in ANY volunteer activity, you MUST check with an ISSS Advisor BEFORE getting started.
Remember, when in doubt….check with ISSS!
The following is a basic overview of employment options for F-1. Detailed information is provided in the F-1 Employment Online Workshop, which F-1 students are REQUIRED to view in its entirety if they wish to apply for an employment benefit.
A fundamental eligibility requirement for all types of employment is that you must continuously maintain lawful F-1 status. Maintaining lawful F-1 status includes the following:
Categories of F-1 Student Employment and Important Information
International students can work a maximum of 20 hours a week in the Fall and Spring semesters (part-time)
During the summer and school breaks, international students are allowed to work more than 20 hours (up to full time)
Important to keep in mind:
International students are not allowed to work on campus
- once their degree has been completed
- during 60-day grace period
- after completing SEVIS transfer out
Please review the F-1 Employment Online Workshop to make sure you understand all the policies and regulations on this type of employment.
Also, to browse open job opportunities and specific employment instructions that are applicable to all students, visit the Student Employment website
To learn more about your options, visit these links:
- 24-Month STEM OPT Extension Information
- Off-Campus Employment Due to Severe Economic Hardship
- OPT to CPT: Important Information
Depending on employment option, additional requirements may apply. You are advised to view the F-1 Employment Online Workshop for detailed information for each employment option, including application procedures and documentation.
Should you still have further questions after viewing the online workshop, you are welcome to schedule an appointment to meet with an ISSS advisor or come in during Walk-In Wednesdays.