CPT and OPT Regulations - Slutzker Center for International Services

Curricular Practical Training
1st & 3rd Wednesday and 2nd Friday of each
Month at 3:00 pm
Slutzker Center for International Services
Curricular Practical Training
Temporary employment (e.g., internship) that is an
integral part of an established curriculum.
• Only available prior to degree completion
• Directly related to major field of study (item 5 on I-20)
 Cannot be in a minor field of study
 Cannot be in a previous field of study if different than
your current major field of study
• Employer specific (must have job offer letter)
• Must be authorized by the Slutzker Center in a new I-20
• Not intended for general, ongoing work authorization
• Even unpaid internships require CPT authorization
• Complete 1 academic year (Fall and Spring semesters) in
F-1 status
 Exception may be made for programs that require an internship
from graduate students in their first year of study
• Job offer in major field of study
• Receive departmental approval (recommendation letter)
• Maintain full-time student status for the duration of the
• May not begin CPT until new I-20 authorizing CPT is issued
• Continue to make normal degree progress
I-20 Program Extensions
The duration of an I-20 should provide sufficient a
time to complete the academic degree for which it
was issued.
 Participation in CPT should not delay one’s program
 A student’s desire to continue working on CPT, under
immigration regulations, cannot be the basis of an
I-20 extension.
Types of CPT
Required for the Degree
 Internship required for everyone in degree program in order to
complete degree.
 Student does not need to register CPT for credit.
Integral to the Curriculum
 Internship is not a required part of the program’s curriculum, but
the internship is considered integral to the academic experience.
 CPT experience must be registered for at least 1 credit
Dissertation Research
Doctoral student must engage in off-campus work to complete research
necessary for a dissertation.
SU student must register for GRD 998 and/or a department-specific
dissertation credit and file a Certificate of Full Time Status.
CPT: Full-Time vs. Part-Time
 Part-Time: 20 hours or less per week
 No limitation on number of part-time CPT experience
you can complete, as long as you remain eligible.
 Full-Time: More than 20 hours per week
 364 days or more of full-time CPT makes you ineligible
for OPT at this degree level.
 SCIS recommends limiting full-time CPT to 11 months
 On-campus employment and CPT together cannot
exceed 20 hours of work a week while school is in
session. This includes assistantship and CASE center
Duration of CPT
• CPT is authorized by semester
 Participation in CPT may begin on or after the first day of the
semester. CPT must end before the first day of the following
• CPT may be extended if recommended by
academic department and authorized by SCIS
 Submit a new CPT request, including Training Data Sheet,
Recommendation Letter, and Job Offer Letter, for each semester and
each employer, including summer session(s).
• You may participate in CPT as much as program
will allow and department will authorize.
 A student will be ineligible for OPT if he/she participates in greater
than 364 days of full time CPT.
CPT Application Process
Make a PT STEP 2 appointment and bring :
 Recommendation Letter on department letterhead
 Proof of registration (CPT registered for at least 1 credit if
not required for program)
CPT Application Process (cont.)
 Photocopy of official job offer letter
 Training Data Sheet
Please type responses directly into the fillable form.
CPT Application Process (cont.)
 Student Responsibility Checklist
CPT Application Process (cont.)
 Original of all of your I-20’s since entering the U.S.
 Original of passport, visa, and I-94 card
 Photocopy of health insurance card/plan indicating the
validity period.
 Health insurance should include Medical Evacuation
and Repatriation coverage; if your plan does not
include this (e.g., POMCO), you may purchase a
supplemental FrontierMEDEX plan for $27.30 per
Health insurance should be valid 1 full academic year and
renewed each year thereafter.
Full-time enrollment or equivalent is required for CPT
application processing.
Undergraduate Students:
- SU students enroll in 12 credits; or
- If it is your last semester and fewer than 12 credits are required
to graduate, file a last semester memo with the SCIS.
Graduate Students:
- SU students enroll in 9 credits or file a Certificate of Full-Time
Status with the Registrar’s Office (copy to SCIS)
- If it is your last semester and less than 9 credits are required to
graduate, file a last semester memo with the SCIS.
I-9, Social Security, and Taxes
• I-9: All employees in the U.S. must complete Employment Eligibility
Verification I-9 Forms with their employers within 3 days of starting
• Social Security: Employment in the U.S. requires a Social Security
Number (SSN). If you do not have an SSN, you must have the SSN
memo completed for you (by employer and SCIS) and apply for a SSN
• Taxes:
Social Security and Medicare Taxes
Typically, non-resident F-1 students with authorized CPT or OPT are
exempt from Social Security (F.I.C.A) and Medicare taxes as long as
you continue to declare non-resident status for tax purposes.
Federal, State, and Local Taxes
Federal, state, and local taxes will be withheld from your paycheck by
employers unless you qualify for a tax treaty exemption.
(More information also available at the IRS website)