Employment Options

Employment under the F-1/J-1 visa status should not interfere with making normal progress towards completing the program of study. Students must be in valid F-1/J-1 status to be eligible for any type of F-1/J-1 employment. A social security number is required for all forms of paid employment. Approval for any type of employment or practical training (paid or unpaid) must be obtained BEFORE starting employment. The following information will explain different aspects of employment. 

On-Campus Employment:

F-1 students who maintain in a good F-1 status may apply for on-campus employment. On-campus employment is specific to work that take place on campus. 

  • "On-campus employment must either be performed on the school's premises, (including on-location commercial firms which provide services for students on campus, such as the school bookstore or cafeteria), or at an off-campus location which is educationally affiliated with the school. Employment with on-site commercial firms, such as a construction company building a school building, which do not provide direct student services is not deemed on-campus employment for the purposes of this paragraph. In the case of off-campus locations, the educational affiliation must be associated with the school's established curriculum or related to contractually funded research projects at the postgraduate level." (8 C.F.R. 214.2(f) (9) (i)

  • On-campus jobs can be applied for by checking either the FAU Handshake portal or the FAU Jobs page . Be sure to look specifically for student postings under position type.
  • Here are Tips to find an On-Campus Employment.
  • On-campus employment for those of F-1/J-1 status does not require special permission from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). 

  • On-campus employment is limited to 20 hours per week when school is in session. Students may work at more than one campus location, but the total number of hours may not exceed 20 hours per week.
  • Working more than 20 hours per week on campus is allowed only during regular school breaks (winter & spring breaks) and during the summer term (continuing students only). The summer term is considered the official annual vacation for F-1 student enrollment purposes. Students who begin a new program in the summer term are not eligible for annual vacation until the next summer.
  • On-campus employment cannot interfere with making normal progress towards completing the program of study. Students are expected to follow college/departmental policies and Human Resources/Student Employment policies regarding on-campus employment.

  • Newly arrived students who entered the U.S. in initial SEVIS status and transfer students from other institutions within the U.S. may begin on-campus employment no more than 30 days prior to the first day of classes. Students planning to transfer from FAU to another institution may work at FAU until their SEVIS transfer release date.
    Students currently enrolled at more than one institution can only work on-campus at the institution holding their SEVIS records.

    Students securing an on-campus job must report to the Student Employment Office to complete necessary paperwork and orientations.

Off-Campus Employment:

  • Students applying for off-campus employment or practical training must attend the Employment/Practical Training Workshop, read the online guide to Employment/Practical Training, or make an individual appointment with an ISS advisor BEFORE submitting their application for employment authorization and being authorized the appropriate benefit approval/recommendation. Below are the two common off-campus employment authorization options for international students; please click on each link for more details:
OPT   (Optional Practical Training) - typically applied for in final term of study to work after degree completion
CPT   (Curricular Practical Training) - can only be authorized during active degree program while student is enrolled into courses

Others/Unforeseen Economic Hardship:

This off-campus employment requires Employment Authorization Document (EAD) from USCIS

  • Students must meet with an ISS advisor to discuss eligibility criteria for this category

  • Students must have maintained F-1 status for at least one full academic year (two consecutive semesters of full-time enrollment which equals at minimum 30 weeks combined)

  • Is designed for off-campus employment due to circumstances that arose after obtaining F-1 status

  • Is granted by USCIS in one-year increments or until the program end-date, whichever is sooner

  • Is terminated upon transferring schools

  • Is limited to 20 hours per week while school is in session and may exceed 20 hours per week during official school breaks

How to obtain a Social Security Card:

Students newly arrived in the U.S. must wait at least 10 days prior to requesting a social security number (SSN) from the Social Security Administration office. During the 10-day period, students must complete check-in with ISS; clear registration holds and register for classes; obtain a departmental memo confirming employment (addressed to ISS); and obtain the ISS support letter for the Social Security Administration (SSA) office.

Current students who traveled abroad and recently returned to the U.S. should also wait 10 days after date of entry to apply for the Social Security Number.

If you have been offered employment, you need to apply for a  Social Security Card; for directions to the local SSA office in Boca Campus click  here; for directions to the local SSA office in Jupiter Campus click  here; for directions to the local SSA office in Davie Campus click  here.