Employment for International Students

International Student Job Search Resources

This link to our Career Development Center sponsored site will provide resources in your job search. As always, students on an F-1 or J-1 visa must first receive permission to work off campus from an International Student Advisor before proceeding with a job search.

Employment for F-1 Students

On-Campus Employment for F-1 Students: International students in F-1 and J-1 student status may typically work on campus for up to 20 hours per week while school is in session. Full time employment is allowed during breaks and vacation periods. Most international students do not work on campus. This should not be considered as a resource to fund your education.

Curricular Practical Training: Curricular practical training is used at SNHU to authorize internships which are a component of many of our degree programs. Limitations on use of internships vary by academic department.

Optional Practical Training: Optional Practical Training is a great opportunity to gain actual employment in your current major field of study. Students are required to prepare the necessary materials prior to booking an appointment with an International Student Advisor in the International Student Services office (ISS). The advisor will review your completed application, prepare a new I-20 to include in the application package and mail your completed application package to USCIS for you.

Employment to Avoid Economic Hardship: If you have been in F-1 status for a full academic year and are able to prove to CIS that there has been an unforeseeable and dramatic change in your economic circumstances, then you may qualify to apply for authorization for part-time employment off-campus. This employment is restricted to 20 hours per week while school is in session, full-time during summer or annual vacation.

Internship with an International Organization: If you are maintaining lawful F-1 status, you may accept an internship with a "recognized" international organization, such as the United Nations or the World Bank.

Employment for J-1 Students

Rules governing the employment of J-1 students and their dependents are very different from those for F-1 students.

Employment Authorization: All employment for J-1 students is authorized by the Responsible Officer (RO) for the sponsoring program. Your sponsor may be Southern New Hampshire University (SNHU), in which case the advisors in International Student Services (ISS) are your responsible officers. If you are here under a J-1 program sponsored by the United Nations, the U.S. Agency for International Development, AMIDEAST or some other agency, your RO will be someone at that sponsoring organization. You will need to contact the RO at your sponsoring agency directly to learn about their rules which will govern your employment. Many sponsors do not authorize any employment because sponsored students receive funds from governmental sources. Some do not authorize academic training because of contracts requiring immediate return to your home country. If you are not sponsored by SNHU, you should contact your RO at your sponsoring organization for details on its procedures.

On- or Off-Campus Employment: On-campus employment is available for up to 20 hours per week or full-time during breaks and vacations. It must first be authorized by your Responsible Officer. Students sponsored by SNHU must consult staff in ISS. State Department regulations allow J-1 employment for those who undergo a significant and unforeseeable change in their financial circumstances. If you believe that you qualify, come to ISS and explain your situation to an RO. You will need to present documented proof of the change in your circumstances. Once authorized, you may work up to 20 hours per week while school is in session. This work may be either on or off campus.

Academic Training: Academic training related to your field of study may be granted by your RO for up to eighteen months (thirty-six months for doctoral students). The total training period generally does not exceed the amount of time in the full course of study. The training must be an integral or critical part of your academic program. It can be done during your program (unpaid only) or beginning no later than 30 days after completion of studies.

J-1 students sponsored by Southern New Hampshire University must provide an RO in ISS with an offer letter or description from the academic training employer detailing the job plus a memo from your academic dean or academic advisor stating that the proposed employment meets the above conditions. There are forms in ISS for this purpose. You must present the offer of employment within 30 days of completing your program.