F-1 students are eligible for a few types of U.S. work authorization, which include:
Students may work on-campus for up to 19.5 hours per week while classes are in session and up to 40 hours per week during breaks.
On-campus employment must end by the Friday of the final week of the graduating quarter.
On-campus employment must be on the premise of the school that issued students' currently valid I-20.
Look for on-campus jobs by going to "Student Employment Opportunities" on the UW Tacoma employment page. Note that international students are not eligible for work-study positions (work-study is a U.S. government financial aid program only open to U.S. citizens or permanent residents).
A few on-campus entities such as retail shops or restaurants *may* be considered on-campus. Please contact an international student advisor if you have questions about whether or not your job is considered an on-campus job or not.
On-campus employment is considered, “incident to status”, and students do not need to receive permission from an international student advisor to engage in on-campus employment. International student advisors can provide guidance/opinions but the final hiring decision is made by the employer.
Once you have accepted an on-campus position, follow the steps on our Social Security Number page to obtain your Social Security Number. A Social Security Number is needed to work in the U.S.!
Curricular Practical Training (CPT) will allow international students to engage in pieces of training that are an integral part of an established curriculum and directly related to their major field of study. To learn more visit the CPT webpage.
Optional Practical Training (OPT)
There are three different types of Optional Practical Training (OPT). Pre-Completion OPT (before students graduate), Post-Completion OPT (after students graduate), and STEM Extension OPT. Most students engage in Post-Completion OPT upon graduation for 12 months. Students who obtained a degree in Science, Technology, Engineering, and Math fields are eligible for STEM Extension OPT for additional 24 months. Post-Completion OPT application can be filed to United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) 90 days prior to the graduation date. Info sessions are offered each quarter. To learn more, please visit our OPT webpage.
All UW Tacoma students have access to career related resources, including use of the Handshake database and free appointments or walk-in hours with staff in the Career Development & Education office. See the Office's website for more information.
H-1B Visa Information
Immigration Attorney Sok-Khieng (So-Can) Lim from Davies Pearson, PC, presented to our students on H-1B work visas in February 2017. The link to his presentation is below.