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F-1 Curricular Practical Training

What is CPT?

Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is authorized off-campus employment which is integral to your major and the experience must be part of your curriculum. CPT is a type of internship or off-campus employment permission for F-1 international students who are currently pursuing a program of study in the U.S. It allows students to gain experience in their field of study and is directly connected to the program’s curriculum. CPT is only available prior to the completion of your degree program. You must have a job offer at the time of your CPT application. CPT employment may not delay completion of your academic program.

Who is eligible for CPT?

To be eligible for CPT you must be enrolled in a major program of study that has an academic internship course built into the curriculum and you must meet the following additional criteria:

  • Be in lawful F-1 status
  • Have approved health insurance
  • Have a job offer
  • Be enrolled full-time (6 credit hours per semester for graduate students)
  • Cannot be enrolled in an Intensive English Program (IEP)

When can I take CPT for the Executive Graduate program:

  • In order to be eligible to obtain employment authorization for CPT – you must be accepted into the Hybrid Executive program, working full-time, starting in the next available start date and can be in lawful F-1 status.
  • CPT applications must be submitted no later than 3 weeks prior to the start of each semester
    • CPT applications are accepted at the beginning of fall, spring, and summer semesters
      • CPT can begin no sooner than the first day of the academic semester
  • CPT must be directly related to your major field of study.
    • You are required to register for an internship specific course for academic credit and must continue to register for the course during each semester to be eligible to continue working.

Academic Requirements

  • Registration in the CPT/Academic Internship specific course
  • Complete continuing update reports with your academic advisor/professor throughout your CPT experience as required by your CPT/Internship specific course
  • Complete final project to submit by the final end date of your CPT experience
  • Maintain above a 3.0 GPA

Documents Needed to Apply (Needs to be submitted at the time of application for the Executive Graduate programs for the first semester and 3 weeks prior to the class start dates for the subsequent semesters):

  • CPT Application
  • University Employer Agreement Form
  • Copy of the employment verification letter from your employer with the following information:
    • Written on the company’s letterhead
    • Include the job title
    • Include the job description
    • Specify the employment address
    • State if the position is full- or part-time (number of hours included)
    • Specify the exact dates of employment

How to Apply for CPT

The application deadline is 3 weeks prior to the start of the semester. Late applications WILL NOT be accepted and you will not be eligible for CPT for the semester.

  1. Complete the Internship Agreement & Registration Form
  2. Gather all required documents needed to apply (see Documents Needed to Apply section of this page)
  3. Upload Registration Form and required documents with your application documents. In subsequent semesters, you will be directed to upload them to your Blackboard CPT class portal.
  4. Information will be reviewed and submitted to add academic internship course to your schedule
  5. Updated CPT I-20 will be emailed to you (this will take approximately 3-5 business days)

You cannot begin work until you have receive your new I-20 with authorized work dates.

Want to continue taking CPT?

CPT must be authorized for each academic semester and only certain programs allow for consecutive CPT. In order to continue CPT for consecutive semesters, approval from your CPT Advisor and a new Internship Agreement & Registration Form, along with steps 1-5 above must be completed and approved. You will also be required to register for the internship specific course and will be responsible for payment of the additional credit hours each time you wish to engage in CPT. Remember-full time employment for 12 or more months will invalidate your eligibility for Optional Practical Training (OPT).