As an F1 student, you have the option of working in the United States by engaging in practical training during your program. Practical training can provide valuable work experience by sharpening and adding to the skills you are learning in your program.
Requirements for Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
- CPT must relate to your major and the experience must be part of your program of study.
- When you nroll at the graduate level, your designated school official (DSO) may authorize CPT during your first semester if your program requires this type of experience. Ask your DSO for details.
- Your DSO will provide you a new I-20 that shows that the DSO has approved you for this employment.
- You can work on CPT either full-time or part-time.
- CPT requires a signed cooperative agreement or a letter from your employer.
- If you have 12 months or more of full-time CPT, you will become ineligible for OPT, but part time CPT is fine and will not stop you from doing OPT.
How to Apply for CPT
To apply for curricular practical training, you must bring the following items to OISS:
|1. Letter from Employer/Institution indicating the following:
2. Letter from the Department Head indicating that the employment is required of all students in this major to complete the program. Letter should include the # of hours of work per week.
3. OISS CPT Form
4. Proof of enrollment in course that is connected to required employment
| 1. Letter from Employer/Institution indicating the following:
2. Advisor/Dean Form
3. OISS CPT Form
4. Proof of enrollment in course that is connected to opportunity
Curricular practical training is not meant to be a convenient employment opportunity. If all eligibility requirements are met, an international student advisor will authorize CPT on an update I-20 form. You must be careful not to start nor end outside of the authorized employment dates on the I-20.
Unauthorized employment is a violation of your F1 status. If you work off campus without authorized CPT paid/unpaid your I-20 will be terminated. Failing to meet the requirements of work authorization such as course enrollment or failing to maintain full-time status is also a violation of the F1 visa.