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Employment: ON-CAMPUS | CPT | OPT

On-campus Employment

F-1 students are generally permitted to work in any on-campus position while they are attending that school and maintaining their F-1 status. On-campus employment does not require the authorization or updates to the SEVIS record. Augsburg will support international students in finding employment but employment is NOT GURANTEED.

Rules and regulations to consider:

  • Students in their second, third and fourth year will be prioritized for on-campus employment.
  • Students receiving full scholarships (ELCA and other) will have limited work opportunities. Other students will be prioritized.
  • Students need to be engaged in a full course of study to be employed.
  • Eligible students can work no more than 20 hours per week (if assigned or available), and are allowed no more than 2 on-campus positions.
  • On-campus employment is not available after the student’s program end date.
  • Students who have completed a full academic year at Augsburg can also seek CPT (see section under).

Also, students need to:

  • show their SSN number or apply for one immediately after an on-campus job has been secured.
  • have an American bank account for easy deposits.
  • pay taxes when employed in the United States.

To look for current on-campus job opportunities, visit On-Campus Student Jobs.

The Augsburg Bookstore or Dining Services are considered on-campus employment but are not listed in the link above.

For Information on Social Security Number Card, please check out our section on Social Security Number.

Off-campus Employment or internship experiences

F-1 students may be authorized and documented in SEVIS to work or internship experiences off campus related to their major field of study once they have been in F-1 Status for one year and studied full time. Before you participate in any kind of off-campus employment, volunteering, or internships, please consult an international student advisor. See the types of off campus opportunities below.

Economic Hardship Work Authorization

In very rare circumstances, students can be authorized for Economic Hardship Work Authorization. This requires specific circumstances and close working with your international student advisor.

Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

Once undergraduate students have completed one year of full time enrollment, and the F-1 Status is maintained, students can apply for Curricular Practical Training or CPT, which is temporary employment or training within their major field of study and integral to the curriculum. For graduate students the rules are slightly different, so please see below.

Both undergraduate and graduate students should meet with your international student advisor for more details. You must receive approval before you begin with a new I-20.

We work closely with the Strommen Center for Meaningful Work as they serve as the hub for all internships on campus. You will therefore see that the process goes between the Strommen Center AND the ISSS office.

Please be aware that you can not start training, orientation, or work before you complete your paperwork with Strommen and ISSS and have your new I-20 in hand.

How to get started?


Step 1: View the: CPT: Curricular Practical Training Presentation

Step 2: Set up ONE-ON-ONE session with the ISSS office

Step 3: Fill in and complete ONE of the following forms: 

          a. FOR CREDIT Internship Form 

          b. NON-CREDIT Internship Form

Step 4: Complete the Curricular Practical Training (CPT) Request and Verification Form 

Step 5: Bring the completed CPT Request and Verification form (from Step 4), the employment letter (including position title, employer name/address, work hours/week, etc.) to your meeting with your ISSS advisor. A new I-20 will be generated showing CPT authorization on page 2. This I-20 serves as the legal proof of your off-campus employment eligibility. Make sure to check the time period in which you are authorized (from 6-12 months).

Step 6: Start your internship. Due to government regulations, you must have the CPT authorization in hand BEFORE you begin your CPT experience (including training and orientation).


Step 1: View the: CPT: Curricular Practical Training Presentation

Step 2: Meet with your faculty advisor to ensure you are ready and eligible for CPT

Step 3: Set up a  ONE-ON-ONE session with the ISSS office

Step 4: Complete the Curricular Practical Training (CPT) Request and Verification Form 

Step 5: Fill in and complete your Internship Form

NOTE: In certain instances, Augsburg University will allow international graduate students to seek CPT opportunities during their first and second semester of their program to further the academic objectives of the degree.

To authorize CPT during the two first semesters, a recommendation from the academic/faculty advisor will be required, including a written approval confirming that the CPT opportunity will deepen the students’ learning outcomes, and that the experience will be an integral part of the established curriculum. 

The students’ readiness and eligibility will be determined by the faculty/academic advisor and the PDSO at Augsburg University, and will depend on the graduate program. 

For students not eligible (for first and second semester CPT), CPT can be authorized after the second semester has been completed.

Post – Completion Employment or Internships

Optional Practical Training (OPT)

If you plan to do any Optional Practical Training after graduating or are not sure, we recommend you come in at least 4 months in advance of your program end date (the last day of your final semester) to talk through the process, understand how to apply and the timeline. OPT is a benefit of your F-1 status and you have the opportunity to work in your major field of study. ISSS will offer OPT sessions.

We highly recommend attending one of those sessions, and then set up a one to one meeting with an ISSS Advisor to begin the process to apply. We recommend that you begin working with the Strommen Center a semester before your final semester for support in resume, networking, and interviewing.

Please review the following documents for more detailed guidance and planning:

Step 1: View the: OPT: Optional Practical Training Presentation

Step 2: Set up a  ONE-ON-ONE session with the ISSS office

Step 3: Complete the Optional Practical Training Advising Sheet, Faculty Advisor Form & Planning Guide 

Step 4: Fill in and submit your USCIS Application and Process I-765 Form (and follow the Instructions)

Step 5: Start searching for an OPT employment (related to your field of study)

Step 6: Embark on your employment once you have received your EAD card in the mail

Step 7: Provide your employment information to the ISSS office (offer letter, name of employer, address, supervisor name and contact)

STEM Optional Practical Training (OPT) Extension

After twelve months of Optional Practical Training, students in STEM Eligible fields can apply for STEM OPT. You must be doing your OPT in the major field of study that is a STEM Eligible Field and be working with an E-Verified employer. For more information, please speak with your advisor. You must submit your application before your OPT runs out, but we recommend you work with us 4-5 months before the end of your initial EAD.

STEM Extension Advising Packet & Planning Guide

Training Plan for STEM OPT Students (I-983 Form) 

Employers Guide