A-Z Index

Working in the United States

While your first priority is studying, you may want to earn a little spending money. Working on campus is a great way to do this. Working here can not pay for living and tuition. You should not expect to pay your own way with a job as most student employees earn only $300 per month.

Finding a job is your opportunity to get experience with the American job search process You may want to start by visiting Student Employment.

On-Campus Employment

  • All students are able to work on-campus
  • 20 hours a week during school
  • 40 hours during a school break (vacation)
  • Employment opportunities are those positions which support the student body

Off-Campus Employment

  • Only offered to those who have unforeseen economic hardship, internship with an International Organization or Special Student Relief program or an internship as an integral part of their academic program.
  • Student must be issued an EAD (Employment Authorization Document) card from USCIS (Citizenship and Immigration Services) or authorized I-20.
  • 20 hours a week during school
  • 40 hours a week during a school break (vacation)

Severe Economic Hardship

  • Definition loss of financial aid or on-campus employment without fault on the part of the student, substantial fluctuations in the value of currency or exchange rate, inordinate increases in tuition and/or living costs, unexpected changes in the financial condition of the students source of support, medical bills, or other substantial and unexpected expenses.
  • Procedures
    • Statement describing the unforeseen hardship situation
      • Letter from home stating the change in family circumstances
      • Proof of currency devaluation in the students country
    • Explain why other employment options are unavailable or insufficient
    • Complete Form I-765 (c) (3) (iii)
    • Obtain 2 Passport style photos
    • $120.00 check
    • Contact DSO official to complete the process

Optional Practical Training for F-1 Students (OPT)

  • Definition: temporary employment for practical training directly related to the students major area of study
  • Apply 4 months before Graduation
  • Application can be picked up from the International Involvement Center
  • Duration: 1 Year less a day maximum. Must use within 14 months of graduation
  • Cost of OPT is $340.00
  • Must apply to another school, for residency, or H-1B visa before end date on EAD
  • 20 hours a week during school
  • 40 hours a week during a school break (vacation)

Curricular Practical Training for F-1 Students (CPT)

  • Definition: an integral part of an established curriculum
  • Must provide letter from Advisor stating the integral part this training will provide for the curriculum
  • Must provide a letter from the Company stating the start date and end date
  • Duration: 1 Year less a day. Full-time status of CPT for more than one year will eliminate eligibility for OPT
  • Available full time during the summer (May to August) or part time during the school year (August to May - students must also comply with all enrollment requirements to maintain status. Therefore, no CPT will be authorized for locations too far to commute regularly to campus to take class - roughly a 150 mile radius from Maryville including Kansas City, Omaha, Des Moines, Lincoln, Lawrence, etc.)
  • All CPT authorizations for paid internships will be processed and approved by the Director of Inernational Affairs.

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