Employment Matters

Employment Overview

To maintain your F-1 status, it is very important that you understand and comply with U.S. federal immigration regulations pertaining to employment. It is considered a serious violation of your immigration status to work without proper authorization.

In many cases, international students must contact the CARE Director for authorization prior to accepting employment. Do not begin employment without first receiving the appropriate work authorization.

There are three main types of employment authorization for F-1 students:

  • On-Campus Employment: Employment performed on campus and paid by Pacific Oaks College.
  • Curricular Practical Training: Off-campus employment authorization for work done in your field of study while enrolled as a student. See the CPT Application for more information.
  • Optional Practical Training: Off-campus employment authorization granted by USCIS for work done in your field of study, usually following graduation. See the OPT Application for more information.

On-Campus Employment

Employment Restrictions

F-1 students do not need authorization from CARE in order to engage in on-campus employment, but must adhere to the following conditions:

  • The student must be enrolled full time and otherwise maintaining his/her F-1 status.
  • The student may not work more than an aggregate of 20 hours* per week while classes are in session. The student may work full time during official school breaks.
  • New F-1 students may not begin work more than 30 days before the start of classes.
  • The student may not engage in on-campus employment after completing a course of study.
  • In the case of a student who transfers to another institution, the student may only engage in on-campus employment at the school having jurisdiction over the student’s SEVIS record.

* This means 20 hours per week total for all on-campus jobs combined.