Employment in the U.S.

Work authorization summary for students who are in lawful status

Definition of employment

Employment is the rendering of services on either a part-time or full-time basis for compensation, financial or otherwise, including self-employment (uncompensated activity is referred to as volunteering).



Part-time employment is defined as work for a total of 20 hours/week or fewer.



Full-time employment is defined as work for a total of more than 20 hours/week.


Potential effects on international students

International students contravening employment restrictions risk violating their visa status. Potential effects of violating international student visa status include, but are not limited to, termination of SEVIS record and the need to regain visa status through costly and sometimes lengthy procedures. Please direct questions about employment restrictions to the International Student Office.