Do I need permission from Immigration Services in order to work off campus?

Era Pathak,

As an international student, you are granted F1 visa to enter and study in the U.S. Under no circumstances is an F1 student allowed to work outside their own university until after two semesters of full time enrollment. During this duration, the student can work on the campus of their own university. After completion of two semesters of full time enrollment, the student has the option to work off-campus but only through one of the following three types of employments – Curricular Practical Training (CPT), Optional Practical Training (OPT), or STEM OPT extension. You may visit the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) webpage for further details related to each of these work options:

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Era Pathak,


 Yes both in case of CPT & OPT. Students on F 1 visa can also apply for permission to work off campus in a field not related to their major, in case of unforeseen circumstances ,   Applications for this work permit are reviewed by USCIS on a case-by-case basis and decisions are dependent upon the student’s personal circumstances.