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Employment, OPT, and CPT

Be sure to carefully review the regulations so that you do not violate any laws or start unauthorized employment. Unauthorized employment of any kind is a serious violation of F-1 status, so it is important to learn what employment is allowed before you consider a potential job.


On-Campus Employment

F-1 students do not require a special employment authorization document.

F-1 students can work a maximum of 20 hours per week on campus. See Georgia Southern’s Student Employment Center for on-campus opportunities.


Off-Campus Employment

Off campus employment is not allowed under any circumstances, unless participating in Curricular Practical Training (CPT) or Optional Practical Training (OPT), or if a student has a circumstance involving severe economic hardship.


Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

All students must submit a CPT Request in the ISSS Portal to apply for CPT. Students must upload their CPT documentation for review. If/when a CPT request is approved, students will receive a new I-20 with CPT authorization. If students have questions after reviewing the posted information, they may schedule an appointment with a DSO.


Optional Practical Training (OPT)

All students must submit an OPT Request in the ISSS Portal to apply for OPT. Students can upload their OPT packet for review. If/when an OPT request is approved, students will receive a new I-20 with OPT recommendation. If students have questions after reviewing the posted information, they may schedule an appointment with a DSO.

Helpful Resources for Students:


Economic Hardship Employment

In instances where USCIS determines that a student faces financial hardship due to unforeseeable factors beyond their control, a student may be authorized to pursue off-campus unemployment.  If a student believes they have a case, they should work closely with their assigned International Student Advisor to submit an application to USCIS for Severe Economic Hardship Employment.

Last updated: 2/7/2020