Skip Ribbon Commands
Skip to main content
Employment Options for F-1 Students
Work Permission

There are various specific employment options available to international Students on F-1 visas.  (Note:  These options are available provided that you are maintaining lawful F-1 status.  Please see  Maintaining Student Status site for maintaining lawful F-1 status.)

· On campus work is permitted up to 20 hours a week during the academic year unless Practical Training has been authorized.  Full-
  time on-campus employment is possible during vacation periods.  Please contact the International Student Advisor before accepting any
  employment offers.
· Off-campus work permission prior to graduation may be granted under the following conditions:
    · The student maintained legal F-1 visa status at Woodbury University for at least 9 months.
    · The student wishes to complete an internship.
    · The student elects to work in his/her field of study and use Practical Training on a part-time basis.
    · The student experiences severe unexpected financial hardship.
The on-campus option is the easiest way to begin working if you are looking for general experience and a little pocket money.  As you read through each of the options, determine which category(s) apply to you and begin the process by speaking with the Office of Student Development as soon as possible.  This is only an overview and is designed to give you a general breakdown of the employment benefits/programs available to F-1 students.  Specific regulations and application procedures for each of the above can be discussed with you in greater detail.
On-Campus Employment
On a student visa (F-1) you are entitled to work on campus up to 20 hours per week in the Fall and Spring semesters.   However, you may work full-time on campus in the Summer.  If you choose to work during the Summer months, you must be registered for classes in the following Fall semester.  You must possess a valid passport, I-94, I-20 and social security card.  You may work on-campus as long as you are enrolled full-time at Woodbury University. Once you find an on-campus employer, you and your employer must fill out the Campus Employer Verification Form to start your Social Security Number application process.
Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
The United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) defines Curricular Practical Training (CPT) as a training program which is “an integral part of an established curriculum…such as alternate work/study, internship, cooperative education, or any other type of required internship or practicum which is offered by sponsoring employers through cooperative agreements with the school.”  (Manual Section  For example, if your major is Architecture, your program requires structured work experience.  This work experience or internship is also included in the course catalog under major requirements.  You will see that many other majors at Woodbury require an internship or curricular practical training. 
If your major requires such experience, you should meet with your faculty advisor to discuss internship options.  Then, you should make an appointment to see the Office of Student Development’s international student advisor.  Be sure to bring your program description detailing your employment contract approved by your department your I-20, passport, and I-94 card. CPT may be used at the part-time rate (less than 20 hours a week) during the Fall and Spring semesters, and full-time (40 hours a week) during the Summer.
Once you establish who your CPT employer will be, you and your academic/faculty advisor must fill out the CPT Eligibility Form to start your Social Security Number application process.
Optional Practical Training (OPT)
In order to qualify for Optional Practical Training (OPT) authorization, you must be in lawful F-1 status for one full academic year (9 consecutive months) and be in good academic standing.  The employment opportunity must be directly related to your field of study.  You may work up to 20 hours per week during the Spring and Fall semesters and full-time during vacation periods before completing your program (pre-completion).  You may also work full-time if you have completed your program of study (post-completion).  You must apply for practical training authorization up to 90 days prior to your program end date to 60 days after your program end date. OPT is valid for a total of 12 months. There is a processing fee payable to BCIS.  In addition, you will need to complete Form I-765 which will be specified at your meeting with the International Student Advisor.  This application can be done by mail or online, so plan ahead if you think this option applies to you.  If approved, you will receive an EAD (Employment Authorization Document) card which should be presented to your employer at the time of hire.  You must obtain your EAD in order to begin working.  If you are interested in applying for OPT, you should schedule an appointment with an International Student Advisor for assistance.  Be sure to bring your I-20, passport, and other documentation.
The first step in the OPT process is to complete the OPT Process and Endorsement  with your academic/faculty advisor.
Meet with James Coon prior to accepting any employment
Location: Office of Student Affairs (Whitten Student Center)
Phone: (818) 252-5265
Hours: Monday- Friday: 9:00am – 5:00pm
Off-Campus Job Search Resources
Woodbury’s On-Line Job Board
Free H1B Visa Information, Guide, Resources, Jobs, Sponsors
Online Database of Sponsoring Employers:
Off Campus Job Search Resource:  
Career Development Services Team
Giovanni "Jeff" Franco, M.S.
Career Advisor
Oversees Career Development Services/Programs
Office: Whitten Student Center
Catherine Roussel, AIA
Career/Outreach Coordinator and IDP Educator
Advises School of Architecture students in Burbank & San Diego
Office: Isaacs Faculty Center
Direct: 818.394.3339