F-1 Employment Options
Your F-1 student status permits you to work on campus at the university that issued your I-20 while you are enrolled in a full course of study. Your ECSU I-20 is your proof of work eligibility for on-campus employment at ECSU only. You must maintain F-1 status to be eligible for this employment benefit; maintaining status means that you are a full-time registered student (except for approved exceptions) in good academic standing with a valid I-20.
Definition of “On-Campus” Employment
On-campus employment includes:
- Employment for Eastern Connecticut State University.
- Examples: research assistant, library student worker, etc.
- Work performed in a campus location for a commercial firm providing direct services to students
- Example: University Bookstore branch in the student center (NOT A BARNES AND NOBLES IN THE MALL)
- Employment at an off-campus location which is educationally affiliated with ECSU. The educational affiliation must be associated with your academic department’s established curriculum or related to contractually funded projects at the post-graduate level, and be an integral part of your educational program.
This can be interpreted to mean that the employment itself must be an integral part of your established curriculum. This particular definition of on-campus employment is very rarely applied. This aspect is rarely used so if interested please discuss it with the study abroad office.
You are allowed to work:
- part-time (20 hours per week or less) during your regular full-time semesters (semester dates are set by the ECSU academic calendar and include finals week).
- full-time (more than 20 hours per week) between semesters.
- full-time (more than 20 hours per week) during your annual vacation quarter.(Generally summer break)
Expiration of On-campus Employment Eligibility
Your on-campus employment eligibility ends:
- When you graduate. It expires the last day of your final semester (according to the ECSU calendar), even if your I-20 expiration date is in the future.
- If you transfer to another university; your work authorization expires on the day of your SEVIS record release date.
- If you violate your F-1 status.
Some campus jobs are designated as “work study” positions. The job description might include a statement such as: “position open only to ECSU students who qualify for work study awards.” Work study awards are part of federal financial aid packages and are only available to U.S. citizens and permanent residents. As an F-1 student, generally you are not eligible for a work study position and should not apply.
However, there are some cases where the term “work study” might be used in a more general sense and not necessarily refer to a financial aid award. You can contact the office that posted the job opening to confirm whether or not you must have a work study award to be eligible for the job.
Finding a Campus Job
There are several ways in which you can find on-campus employment. First of you can go talk to the job center located next to the financial aid office in wood support services. Secondly, you can go to the Eastern website and look under “Student Employment.” Lastly, if you have any contacts to any of the offices on campus you may be able to get a job offer through those contacts.
Your Responsibility: Know the Rules
It is your responsibility to research and understand your on-campus work eligibility. It is generally not the job of ECSU staff outside of the study abroad office to thoroughly know the immigration regulations. It is possible you will be offered employment that you are not eligible to accept or for your employment eligibility to expire without your payroll coordinator notifying you. Be sure to review all information provided and if questions arise contact the study abroad office before accepting any job offers.