Curricular Practical Training: F-1 Students
Employment off-campus for F-1 international students is strictly regulated by the US goverment. Curricular Pratical Training authorization, or CPT, allows you to accept off-campus employment when your established curriculum includes an internship, practicum, or professional experience component. CPT authorization is required for all work experiences that are used for academic credit or are used to fulfill an internship requirement, whether they are paid or unpaid.
In order to be eligible for CPT the internship, practicum, or professional experience must either be a required part of your academic program or must be for academic credit. CPT can be authorized after you have completed two full semesters of study in the U.S. A full semester consists of at least 3 units. Students who have not completed two full semesters are not eligible for CPT.
CPT authorization limits employment to part-time (no more than 20 hours per week) while classes are in session. It can be full-time during breaks (winter break, summer breakt, etc.). To be eligible for part-time CPT during the academic year, you must maintain full-time student status throughout the authorized CPT period. There is no limit on the time you may be authorized for CPT, but if you engage in 12 months or more of full-time CPT, you will lose eligibility for Optional Practical Training (OPT).
Prior to the start of employement, you will need to receive authorization from the ISSO advisor who records the employment in the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS) and issues a new
I-20 Form with a notation that permits you to engage in CPT. You must re-apply to the ISSO anytime you change employers, extend or shorten hours, or extend the length of your employment period. You may only work for the employer specified in the CPT authorization on page three of the Form 1-20, and you must not begin work until you have received the CPT authorization from the ISSO. Working on dates that are not included in the CPT listed on your I-20 is not permitted and may result in the termination of your F-1 status.
CPT Application Procedures
Please allow one week from the time we receive your documents to process your new I-20 form.
Please visit Career Services in the LEEP Center to begin the necessary paperwork for approval of your internship. Once the form is approved by Career Services, and all but the ISSO signature is complete, please deliver the forms to the ISSO office. The ISSO advisor will process your CPT authorization and contact you by email when your new I-20 form is ready to be picked up.
Please log into The Clark Recruiter to begin the internship approval process. In Recruiter, you will be prompted to upload a scanned copy of the internship offer letter. The ISSO advisor will then complete your CPT authorization and contact you by email when your new I-20 is ready to be picked up from the ISSO.
Other graduate students
Two letters are required to begin the CPT process. The first letter is from your department chair or your academic advisor. See sample letter. The second letter is from your employer and should be on company letterhead. The employer letter must include the name and address of the employer, position title, dates of employment and a brief description of your job duties. Please submit both letters to the ISSO office for processing. If the ISSO advisor determines that your CPT request falls within the regulations established by the US government, your CPT will be authorized. The time period of CPT granted will be indicated on the I-20 for the specific employer. You will receive an email from the ISSO when your new I-20 form is ready to be picked up. .
Please do not begin employment until you have received your new CPT I-20 form from the ISSO office.