Though employment is a benefit of the F-1 and J-1 student status, numerous rules and restrictions apply and must be considered when making employment decisions.

Employment is considered to be the rendering of services for compensation. This includes financial compensation as well as other types of compensation, such as meals, housing, books or any type of reimbursement for transportation, lodging, etc.

Working or accepting employment in the United States without proper authorization is considered a serious violation of immigration status, which can affect your ability to remain in the United States.

This section covers multiple kinds of work authorization for F and J visa holding students, including: 

F-1 Employment

F-1 students considering any type of off campus employment in the United States should consult with International Student and Scholar Affairs (ISSA) prior to beginning work.

While employment on Notre Dame’s campus generally does not require authorization from ISSA, there are exceptions. All off campus employment must be authorized by ISSA or USCIS in advance of the employment start date and must be related to the student’s major/s listed on their Form I-20.

All students who plan to work in the U.S. and are paid by a U.S. based employer are eligible for and should obtain a U.S. Social Security Number (SSN) for employment and tax purposes.

For more information about employment opportunities and resources, we recommend connecting with the Meruelo Family Center for Career Development.

J-1 Employment

ALL J-1 student employment, including scholarships, fellowships, and assistantships, requires prior written approval from ISSA and/or documentation on the DS-2019.

Employment is a benefit of the J-1 student status but one to which numerous rules and restrictions apply. Students may violate these rules and lose their immigration status by:

  • working on campus without prior, written authorization;
  • working on campus for more hours than permitted;
  • working off campus without prior, written authorization;
  • working outside of their field of study listed on their major; or,
  • engaging in self-employment or other types of prohibited employment.

All types of J-1 student employment require prior approval from ISSA on the Form DS-2019, which can be requested through ISSAlink.

All students who plan to work in the U.S. should obtain a U.S. Social Security number for employment and taxation purposes. Details about the social security card application can be found on the Social Security Numbers page.