Understanding Work Authorizations
Before you begin searching for an internship or a job, whether it is unpaid or paid, on or off campus, it is important to understand the immigration requirements and policies regarding your visa type. There are several types of employment available for both F-1 and J-1 visa holder, please see the sections below for more information.
- F-1 visa holder
- J-1 visa holder
- H-1B Visa
IMPORTANT: If you are considering any type of employment in the U.S., consult with International Students and Scholars (ISS). Before working in the U.S., all students must first obtain a U.S. social security number for employment and taxation purposes. Check with ISS on how to apply for a social security card.
CPT is a work authorization which allows a student to work in an alternative study, internship, cooperative education(Co-Op), or other type of internship or practicum directly related to the student's major area of study before degree completion.
OPT is a work authorization which allows a student to gain practical experience working off-campus in a job directly related to their major field of study.
F-1 or J-1 degree-holders (B.S., M.S. or Ph.D.) may be eligible for continued employment in H-1B status. H-1B applications are the sponsoring employer's responsibility. View What is A H1-B Visa? for more information.