- Pre-Arrival Information
- F-1 Student Status
- International Student FAQs
A basic requirement for all types of employment is that you must maintain continuous and lawful F-1 status. Do not assume that you are eligible to work without first contact the International Student Office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As an F-1 student, you may be authorized to work off-campus on a part-time basis after you have been in F-1 status for one full academic year provided that you are in good academic standing as determined by your international student advisor. The employment is limited to no more than 20 hours per week when school is in session, though you may work full-time during holidays or school vacations. Your off-campus employment authorization is automatically terminated if you fail to maintain status.
Categories of Off-Campus Employment
Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is an alternative work/study, internship, cooperative education or another type of required practicum that a sponsoring employer offers through agreements with students’ college.
In order to qualify for CPT, the kind of work you do must relate to your major and must be an academic requirement. You must have an offer of employment before applying for CPT and must enroll in the course that would require you to have the work experience. It can be done on a part-time basis (no more than 20 hours per week) or a full-time basis (40 hours per week or more during the summer). Any student who works for one year or more in full-time CPT is not eligible for OPT.
Students must submit a completed CPT form found on the resources page to ISO. The International Student Office will provide you with a new Form I-20, indicating the CPT you will be doing.
Optional Practical Training (OPT)
OPT is temporary employment (12 months) related to a student’s field of study and may take place at any location in the United States. International students can participate in OPT after they have completed their program and are allowed one OPT per educational level (bachelor’s, master’s, doctoral).
If a student wishes to apply for OPT, they must do so through U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). Please set up an appointment with the International Student Office for help applying for OPT. OPT workshops are also provided.
On-campus employment is work that F-1 students whose status is Active in SEVIS status may apply for. On-campus employment is specific to work that takes place on campus. Examples of on-campus employment include working at a university bookstore or cafeteria. If you participate in on-campus employment, you may not work more than 20 hours per week while school is in session. (This policy still applies during heavier work seasons such as Mission’s Conference, Founder's Week, etc.) During any Moody approved holidays, F-1 visa holders may work full time (40 hours per week or more as allowed by Illinois labor laws.) Visit www.ice.gov/sevis/employment for more information.
*F-1 international students are not allowed to work off-campus without prior authorization from the International Student Office. Please contact Brenda Cuellar by emailing ISO@moody.edu or calling 312-329-2230.
After securing a job, you should go to the Human Resources department to complete the Form I-9 (Employment Eligibility Verification) and get a verification letter for your Social Security Number. Then, you will have to come to International Student Office for an additional letter for the Social Security Application.