On-Campus Employment: F-1 and J-1 Students
Working on campus can be an excellent way to enhance your time here at AU. From meeting more students, faculty, and staff to engaging with the university on a professional level, on-campus work positions make a great addition to the AU experience.
Remember: you must have written authorization before you can start working. Beginning work without this written permission is a serious violation of your immigration status. Contact our advisers at ISSS for more information. Also, find important FAQs listed below.
Who is eligible to work on campus?
- If your I-20 (F-1) or DS-2019 (J-1) was issued by American University, AU's International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) requires that you must be in F-1 or J-1 status, have a valid American University I-20 or DS-2019, be enrolled full-time, and be in good academic standing in order to be eligible to work on campus.
- If your DS-2019 was issued by another organization, they may have additional criteria to determine eligibility for on campus work. Please consult your J-1 program Responsible Officer.
Who authorizes you to work on campus?
- The school or institution that issued your I-20 or DS-2019.
- If your I-20 or DS-2019 was issued by American University, AU's ISSS will authorize you for on-campus work authorization each semester.
- If your DS-2019 was issued by another organization, please bring a letter of on-campus work authorization signed by your J-1 program Responsible Officer to AU's ISSS so you can be authorized for on-campus work.
When do you become eligible to work on campus?
- After the proper authorization is granted, you can work on-campus any time during your F-1 or J-1 studies, including your first semester and vacation periods.
- On-campus employment ends for F-1 or J-1 students after you graduate, unless it is work in your field of study, and you have OPT (F-1) or Academic Training (J-1) authorization.
How many hours per week can you work?
- Part time (up to 20 hours per week) while school is in session
- No limit during official university holidays, including winter, spring, and summer breaks
Where you can work?
- Any American University office or vendor that provides direct services to students located on American University's campus.
- In very unusual cases where the university has an affiliation with an off-site employer, the employment may be conducted off-campus, but be considered on-campus employment. Contact an ISSS advisor to discuss if your case might qualify for on-campus employment.
What document will prove your work authorization?
- Your authorization will be updated in the AU/ISSS record. This process takes only a few minutes for ISSS to complete. This must be updated each semester.
For how long is the approval effective?
- You will be authorized for on-campus work authorization for one semester at a time. You must contact ISSS each semester to update your work authorization for the new semester.
What are the limitations?
- There is no limit on the number of months you can work on campus. This authorization does not affect your eligibility for OPT or CPT.
Simultaneous work authorizations:
- You are allowed to work on-campus while also doing approved off-campus work, through CPT, OPT, or an International Organization.
1. OBTAIN EMPLOYMENT AUTHORIZATION
If your immigration documents (I-20 or DS-2019) were issued by American University, ISSS will update my.american.edu with your employment authorization for the semester. Employment authorization must be updated again each semester that you work on-campus.
If your DS-2019 was not issued by American University, please bring a letter of on-campus work authorization signed by your J-1 program Responsible Officer to AU's ISSS so you can be authorized for on-campus work.
2. FIND EMPLOYMENT ON CAMPUS
American University's Human Resources (HR) office maintains an updated listing of part-time jobs available on-campus; go by the HR office (in the Sports Center Annex), or check the part time student job listing on the HR web-site. Note that as an international student on an F-1 or J-1 visa you are not eligible for Federal Work Study (FWS) jobs.
It is also helpful to go around to the offices on campus where you are interested in working to ask if there are openings, and to offer your resume.
3. HAVE YOUR EMPLOYER PROCESS THE HIRING ONLINE
4. YOU MUST APPLY FOR A SOCIAL SECURITY CARD.
Please see the Social Security information page for more information about the process to apply.
(If you already have a Social Security number, skip this step)
5. SCHEDULE AN APPOINTMENT WITH A FOREIGN NATIONAL TAX SPECIALIST IN AU'S PAYROLL OFFICE.
Make an appointment on-line.
6. COMPLETE YOUR ON-LINE PROFILE IN THE GLACIER FOREIGN NATIONAL TAX COMPLIANCE SYSTEM.
After you schedule your appointment with the Foreign National Tax Specialist, your password will be emailed to your AU email (the email will be addressed from “Support”). Before your appointment, take 10 minutes to fill out your address, dates of presence in the US (all previous dates of arrival and departure from the United States, including vacations), and other information.
7. MEET WITH THE FOREIGN NATIONAL TAX SPECIALIST IN PAYROLL TO FILL OUT TAX FORMS (BEFORE STARTING WORK).
You will meet with Simona Assenova or Tarek Mahfouz, Foreign National Tax Specialists, to fill out your tax forms at the Payroll Office (located just 2 blocks from main campus, past the Nebraska parking lot, at 3201 New Mexico Avenue).
Bring the original of the following documents:
• passport (with visa), I-94 card , I-20 or DS-2019 and any previous I-20 or DS-2019 (from AU or other schools)
• Social Security card ( if you have one)
• Hiring Action Form or memo from your employer indicating your first day of work
• American University ID or United States Driver’s license
• If you are on a J-1 visa and your DS-2019 was not issued by American University: letter authorizing on-campus employment from your J-1 Responsible Officer.
You will need to know whether you have claimed a tax treaty in previous years while working in the U.S.
8. FILE TAX FORMS IN APRIL.
Anyone employed in the US is responsible for filing national, state, and local tax forms in April of the following year (even if you have leave the U.S. before April). More information is available on our tax page.