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International Center
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Employment for J-1 Students

The Department of Homeland Security authorizes on-campus employment and off-campus practical work experience under certain circumstances for international students. Working without authorization is a serious violation of J-1 status.

Please note that if you are pursuing off-campus employment training or practical experience related to your program of study, you must apply for Academic Training to receive authorization.

On-Campus Employment

What is on-campus employment?

On-campus employment must be performed on the school's premises, (including on-location commercial firms which provide services for students on campus, such as the school bookstore or cafeteria), or at an off-campus location which is educationally affiliated with the school. Employment with on-site commercial firms, such as a construction company building a school building, which do not provide direct student services is not considered on-campus employment.

How many hours a week can I work on-campus?

You may work part-time (up to 20 hours per week) during each academic term, and full-time when school is not in session (summer holidays and official school holidays).

For how long can I work?

You are authorized to work for one year at a time or until the end date on your current DS-2019, whichever is shorter. Always use your most up-to-date DS-2019. If your DS-2019 is shortened or extended you will need to make an appointment with the Offices of Payroll and Human Resources to update your paperwork.

If you've reached the one-year mark and are still employed, you must submit an updated employment offer letter to the International Center.

Do I need permission to begin on-campus employment?

Your SEVIS record must be updated with your employment information before you begin working on-campus. You must bring your employment offer letter to the International Center that states the following information:

  • Employer name & address
  • The number of hours you will work per week
  • The start and end date of employment
  • Type of employment

You will receive an email from your International Student Advisor once your on-campus employment has been authorized. If you change jobs, you must submit an updated employment offer letter to the International Center.

How do I find employment?

UNF has many different kinds of on-campus jobs available. You can apply for student jobs online and check with your academic department or other offices on-campus to see if anyone is hiring. You can also look for jobs with Dining Services and the UNF Bookstore. Please note that international students are ineligible to apply for Federal Work Study (FWS) positions.

What are the procedures after finding on-campus employment?

Once you find employment you will need to apply for a Social Security card and start the paperwork with the Offices of Payroll and Human Resources.

Off-Campus Employment/Internships

What is Academic Training?

Academic training is a type of off-campus work authorization for J-1 students to find employment (paid or unpaid) related to their field of study.

When can I start Academic Training?

AT may be authorized before the completion of an academic program, but it is generally used after the completion of an academic program. AT done prior to program completion is deducted from the total amount available upon completion.

Your start date of employment must be no later than 30 days after completion of your program.

Who is eligible for Academic Training?

Students must be in the United States primarily to study rather than engage in AT. You must be in good academic standing and apply before the completion of your academic program. Your proposed employment must be directly related to your program of study and you must have an offer of employment.

Do I need authorization to begin Academic Training?

Yes, you must receive authorization from the International Center before beginning employment. You will receive a new DS-2019 authorizing your employment.

How long can I work on Academic Training?

  • Exchange Students: One semester (Fall or Spring) students are allowed 16 weeks of AT after the semester is completed. Two semester students (Fall and Spring) are eligible for a total of 32 weeks of AT.
  • Degree-Seeking Students: Available for a total of 18 months or the period equal to the length of your program at UNF, whichever is shorter.

How do I apply for Academic Training?

Make an appointment with your International Student Advisor and bring the following:

  • Offer letter from your employer. The letter must be signed by your employer on letterhead and include: company name and address, job title and description, dates of employment, hours per week, salary (if applicable) and supervisor name, title, email, and phone number.
  • Academic Training Evaluation Form. This form is to evaluate the effectiveness and appropriateness of your proposed academic training. It must be completed by you and your academic advisor or dean.
  • Health Insurance Verification Form. Health insurance coverage, as required by the J-1 regulations, must be provided for AT after you complete your program at UNF. Your health insurance policy must cover the entire period of AT.
  • Affidavit of Financial Support . You must provide proof of funding for the duration of your AT in the amount of $1,500/month (include an additional $500/month for spouse and $400/month for each child). If your salary amounts to at least $1,500/month, you do not need to submit this form.

You must apply and receive authorization before the end date on your DS-2019 or prior to completing your program, whichever is earlier.

Do I have any reporting requirements while working under Academic Training?

Yes, the following information must be reported to the International Center with 10 days of any changes:

  • Address
  • Phone number & email address
  • If you decide to end academic training early and depart the U.S

May I change employers while on Academic Training?

If you wish to change your job/employer, you must complete the application procedures for AT again. This must be done prior to terminating the previous authorized employment and before beginning the new employment.

If your employment is terminated unexpectedly, your authorization is also terminated, and you will have a 30-day grace period to prepare for departure from the U.S.

Back to J-1 Students Overview