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 Q:  What employment opportunities are available to International students?

Employment opportunities for international students are limited. Working off-campus is illegal and can lead to deportation from the U.S.  You should not plan on earning substantial money from a part-time job to help pay for your studies.

On campus:  On-campus employment for international students is limited to 20 hours per week, usually at minimum wage. Though international students are allowed to work on campus, these jobs are often difficult to obtain and do not provide sufficient funds to sustain education costs.  Jobs are offered on university campuses through the International Students` Office, Housing Services, the catering services, the Library, etc.

Off campus: It may be possible to for students to avail of limited off-campus employment, which is subject to strict regulatory guidelines. It requires approval from US Immigration & Naturalization Service. This approval is not easy to get and depends on a special need.  You must have completed one academic year in F-1 status to qualify for an employment authorization from US Immigration & Naturalization Service (INS).

If unforeseen circumstances lead to a change in your financial situation, you may obtain employment authorization based on severe economic hardship. Examples of unforeseen circumstances include: Loss of your financial aid or on-campus employment through no fault of your own, an unexpected increase in your cost of living or tuition, large medical expenses, a decrease in the value of your home country currency, or an economic loss suffered by you sponsor. 

Students need to fill INS 765  (employment authorization) form along with the letter explaining economic hardships.  INS will issue a work permit only if you can prove that you have a financial hardship and you need to work to pay your tuition.  When student receives the employment card they are allowed to work for up to 20 hours per week while school is in session, and full time or 40 hrs/week during vacation periods (summer). 

 Practical Training:

As an F-1 student, you are eligible for up to 12 months of Post –Completion Practical Training which entail a period of authorized employment, designed to allow foreign students to have professional work experience related to their field of study.  For further details, contact the foreign student adviser at the university, after you are enrolled.

If you have already received 12 months or more of full time curricular practical training, you are ineligible for Post-Completion Practical Training. Time spent in Pre-Completion Practical training also is deducted from the 12 month maximum. You must complete the 12 months of Post-Completion Practical Training within a 14-month period following the completion of your studies. You will be authorized only once for Post-Completion Practical Training.

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