Employment Opportunities

You may work under the following circumstances:


Off-campus due to unforeseen economic hardship

Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

Optional-Pre & Post Completion (OPT)

Under sponsorship of certain international organizations

For all types of work, students must be in status and remain so during their employment. They must also maintain a GPA of 2.0 or better. Students working either on or off campus are not subject to social security taxes but are subject to local, state and federal income tax. 


You may work on campus if you are maintaining status and maintaining a GPA of 2.0 or better. You may begin working your first semester of school. Employment is limited to a maximum of 20 hours per week while school is in session and more than 20 hours a week during school breaks and your legal vacation.

You may begin working no sooner than 30 days prior to the start of classes for your initial entry or to begin a new program.


You may work off-campus for one year intervals if:

1. You have been in F-1 status for one full academic year;

2. You are in good standing as a student (minimum of 2.0 GPA) and are carrying a full course of study

3. You have demonstrated that acceptance of employment will not interfere with your carrying a full course of study; and

4. You have demonstrated that the employment is necessary to avoid severe economic hardship due to unforeseen circumstances beyond your control, such as a loss of scholarship, death or sickness of sponsor or loss of income of sponsor, fluctuations in value of currency or in exchange rate, increases in tuition costs, medical expenses, etc. and have demonstrated that on-campus employment is unavailable or otherwise insufficient to meet the needs that have arisen as a result of your unforeseen circumstances.

If you wish to apply for employment based on economic hardship please come to the International Student Program.


You may participate in curricular practical training if:

• The training is in your field of study

• The training is required of your degree program, is for credit (such as Coop or a class project), or an internship or if the school has a cooperative agreement with an employer.

To qualify for curricular practical training, you must meet eligibility requirements stated under “PracticalTraining” and have found a job or have a job offer in your field of study.


You may be authorized to do practical training in your field of study both before and after you complete your course study. To qualify for any practical training you must be maintaining status and have been in F-1 status one full academic year or nine months. You may count time spent in study abroad programs during your course of study towards this one academic year requirement, as long as you have spent at least one full academic term enrolled in a full course of study prior to studying abroad. English language students may not participate in practical training.

Optional Practical Training falls into four categories:

• During your annual vacation & other times when school is not in session

• While school is in session (limited to 20 hours per week)

• After completion of your course requirements, but before completion of course study, (applies to graduate students only)

• After completion of course of study

You are eligible for 12 months of practical training for each program level that you complete. Each period of OPT is limited to 12 months. OPT completed before graduation is subtracted from the 12-month total. Part-time will be deducted at ½ the full time rate. A job or job offer is not needed to apply for optional practical training. You must apply for OPT prior to completion of a course of study.

You must continue to report your name and address changes to the DSO while you are on OPT.

OPT will be automatically terminated when you transfer to another school or begin study at another educational level.