Student Employment

F-1 and J-1 students are allowed some employment benefits that enable them to pursue internships and full-time employment in the U.S.

On-Campus Employment

International students in the F-1 and J-1 visa status are eligible to work up to 20 hours per week on campus. The 20 hours per week maximum includes all employment. Students who have multiple jobs on campus should closely monitor their work hours to ensure that they do not work more than 20 hours per week. Working more than 20 hours per week would be a violation of the F-1/J-1 visa status.

  • The best way to confirm if employment is considered on-campus or off-campus is to ask your employer if your paycheck will come from Wake Forest University.
  • If your paycheck is issued by Wake Forest University then this employment is considered on-campus employment per immigration regulations.
  • If your paycheck is not issued from Wake Forest University you need to check with an advisor in ISSS, prior to beginning this employment.

International students require specific work authorization to pursue any employment that is considered off-campus. Please note that off-campus does not only equate to the location of the employer but can also mean who the payment is coming from. It is important that international students confirm from where their payment is being issued prior to beginning any type of employment. The risk to your current and future visa status in the U.S. is too great to risk engaging in unauthorized employment that is not considered on-campus work.

J-1 visa holders always require additional authorization from ISSS (or your J-1 sponsor) for any type of employment.

We understand that some students may work on the WFU Reynolda campus as well as the WFU Health Sciences campus. Our university legal counsel has reviewed the relationship between WFU Reynolda and WFU Health Sciences and has confirmed that employment between the WFU Health Sciences and WFU Reynolda campuses is considered on-campus employment.

International students should always check with ISSS prior to beginning any employment. Remember we want to help you protect your visa status as well as options for future visa statuses.

New students/transferring students to WFU:
You may begin working on campus after your transfer release date and only if WFU has issued your new I-20 and you have the I-20 in hand.

Students transferring out of WFU:
All on-campus employment at WFU must end on or before your transfer release date. You cannot begin employment at your new school until your F-1 record has been released to your new school and the new school has issued your I-20.

Applications for on-campus employment are made through individual offices and departments. Your hiring manager should notify WFU Human Resources as soon as you receive an offer of employment. For information about how to apply for a Social Security Number, click here.

Curricular Practical Training

CPT is a benefit of the F visa status for those currently enrolled in full-time degree seeking programs. CPT allows students to pursue off-campus internships in their field of academic study. CPT must be pre-approved by a Designated School Official in the Center for Global Programs and Studies. An offer of employment is required. For more information and application instructions, please visit below:

Curricular Practical Training

Optional Practical Training

OPT is a benefit of the F visa status. OPT provides students with 12 months to pursue full-time employment in their field of academic study. OPT can be pursued pre and/or post graduation. Applications must be submitted to U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services for approval, a process that can take 2-3 months. An offer of employment is not required. For more information, please visit below:

Optional Practical Training

Academic Training

Academic Training is a benefit of the J visa status. Academic Training provides students with the opportunity to pursue internships or employment that relate to their course of study. Academic Training can be pursued pre and/or post graduation. Applications for Academic Training are submitted to the Center for Global Programs & Studies. An offer of employment is required.

Academic Training