F-1 Off-Campus Employment

Types of Off-Campus Employment

A student may be authorized for off-campus employment under the following circumstances:

  • Severe Economic Hardship
  • Employment with an International Organization
  • Special Student Relief

These types of off-campus employment are separate from off-campus employment that may be authorized through practical training. This off-campus employment must be recommended by a Designated School Official (DSO, usually the ISS advisor) and adjudicated and approved by USCIS, which issues an Empolyment Authorization Document (EAD card). A student cannot begin the off-campus employment until s/he receives the EAD from USCIS.

Severe Economic Hardship

This employment benefit is intended to address situations where a financial need beyond the student’s control arises, which was unforeseen at the time the student applied to the school s/he is currently attending and after all potential employment opportunities have proven to be insufficient.

Examples of unforeseen economic hardship include:

  • loss of financial aid or on-campus employment without fault on the part of the student
  • substantial fluctuations in the value of currency or exchange rate
  • inordinate increases in tuition and/or living costs
  • unexpected changes in the financial condition of the student’s source of support
  • medical bills, or other substantial and unexpected expenses

Application Information and Procedures

  • Set up an appointment with an advisor to discuss your eligility.
  • If eligible for this benefit, your ISS Advisor will assist you in applying to the USCIS for the work permit.
  • Application may be by a paper or electronic process.
  • After USCIS receives the application, a receipt will be sent to the applicant to allow tracking the application online.

Employment with an International Organization

This is a type of employment authorization for F-1 students who have been offered an internship with a recognized international organization. Such organizations include the International Monetary Fund, the World Bank, the Organization of American States, and others. These international organizations are listed in 8 CFR 316.20.

Conditions

  • Student is eligible as soon as s/he is in F-1 status; no waiting period.
  • Must be with a qualified international organization
  • Granted in increments of no more than one year, or until expected date of employment completion, whichever is shorter
  • Can be approved for full-time employment
  • Does not have to relate to course of study
  • Must have written offer of employment from a qualifying international organization
  • Must apply for EAD from USCIS, and receive EAD before employment begins
  • Must continue to maintain a full course of study in F-1 status during the period of employment

Application Procedures

  • Set up an appointment with an advisor to discuss the process and eligibility.
  • If eligible for this benefit, your ISS Advisor will assist you in applying to the USCIS for this work permit.
  • Application may be by paper or electronic process.
  • After USCIS receives the application, a receipt will be sent to the applicant to allow tracking the application online.

Special Student Relief

This category is for specific groups of students from parts of the world experiencing emergent circumstances, such as severe natural disaster, war, etc. The Department of Homeland Security may choose to suspend or alter rules regarding duration of status, full course of study, and employment eligibility, for these select groups for specific periods of time. In these cases, DHS may allow additional on-campus or off-campus employment authorizations, and such announcements are made on the DHS Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) website.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Print Friendly, PDF & Email