Many employers are hesitant to offer internships or full-time positions to international students due to confusion over the legality of such hires. The following information will help clarify the process and allay concerns about employing an international student who studies at or who has graduated from Roosevelt University.

Who can legally work in the USA?

Roosevelt University students and alumni in the following categories are legally authorized to work in the United States:

  • U.S. citizens
  • Permanent U.S. residents (commonly referred to as “Green Card” holders)
  • Asylees and Asylum Seekers
  • DACA (Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals)
  • International students with one of the following authorizations:
    1. CPT (Curricular Practical Training) — employment authorization for internships for degree-seeking student while pursuing a degree.
    2. OPT (Occupational Practical Training) — employment authorization for a degree-seeking student for 12 months immediately after graduation.
    3. STEM OPT Extension — additional employment authorization for certain majors for 24 months immediately after regular OPT.
    4. Academic Training — employment authorization for J-1 visa holders (visiting scholars, exchange students) during or immediately following their non-degree program in the USA.

CPT, OPT and Academic Training allow international students to obtain on-the-job experience in their area of study. These programs do not require employer sponsorship; rather, the authorization is granted by Roosevelt University and/or the U.S. government, so the student you wish to hire must simply present this authorization to you.

How to determine if an international student is legally employable

When hiring a non-citizen who holds an F-1 or J-1 visa, it is easy to verify that the student has the appropriate employment authorization:

  • CPT — Current student will present a I-20 with employment authorization granted by Roosevelt University in section “Employment Authorization” section at top of pg. 2. The name of employer and dates of authorization are recorded in this section.
  • OPT — Roosevelt University graduate will present an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) card issued by the U.S. government that lists beginning and end dates for employment. Employment is not tied to a specific employer, so employer name is not recorded on EAD. OPT authorization is awarded by the U.S. government, not by Roosevelt University.
  • STEM OPT — Eligible graduates receive an automatic 180-day extension of work authorization as long as they have timely filed their application. Contact for clarification.
  • Academic Training — Current Roosevelt University student will present a DS-2019 with name of employer and dates of employment. This authorization is granted by Roosevelt University.

When hiring a Roosevelt University student, follow these instructions for completing the I-9 for Foreign Students: I-9 information. Also visit the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) and Students and Employment: Authorization Information government websites for further information.

What is an H-1B visa?

An H-1B visa is a category of visas available to an employer who wishes to sponsor and hire a foreign national who does not fall into one of the categories listed above. H-1B sponsorship is only necessary when an employer wishes to employ (or continue employing) a Roosevelt University alumnus after CPT, OPT or Academic Training eligibility has ended.

Questions about this page?

Questions about this page?

Office of International Programs
Responsible Department
Office of International Programs