Curricular Practical Training (CPT) authorizes an F-1 student to engage in an on- or off-campus paid training that is integral to or required for the academic program. CPT authorizations are issued by International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) and specify the employer, site of activity, and start and end dates authorized during the training.
Every quarter, ISSS offers workshops to explain eligibility for Curricular Practical Training and the application process. Please visit the Events page for dates and times.
Eligibility for CPT
In general, you must meet the following criteria in order to be eligible for CPT:
- You are currently in valid F-1 status
- You are in good academic standing with a GPA of 2.0 or above for undergraduate students, and 3.0 or above for graduate students
- You have been enrolled for at least one academic year prior to the training start date*
- You have enrolled in an experiential learning.
- The training is either required by your academic program, or is an integral part of it
*Regulations require one full academic year of study before a student may engage in CPT except when enrolled in graduate level studies where immediate CPT is required of all students engaging in the program. In these instances, CPT is allowed in the first year of study.
To apply for a CPT authorization, submit the following documents to ISSS at least one week before your anticipated training start date:
- Training offer letter from the employer on official company letterhead, signed by the prospective employer
- CPT Authorization Request Form
Duration of Authorization
CPT may only be authorized prior to the completion of your academic program. CPT authorizations are given for one term at a time, but multiple authorizations may be given without limit throughout your program. Students who have been authorized for 12 months of full-time CPT or more are no longer eligible to apply for Optional Practical Training (OPT) for the same degree level.
Maximum Hours per Week
Your CPT authorization will indicate whether you are eligible for part-time or full-time training. If you have been authorized for part-time training, you may not work more than 20 hours per week. You should speak to your supervisor about the number of hours you will be expected to work each week to ensure you do not exceed the maximum limit. You may be authorized to work more than 20 hours per week during the academic year with a recommendation from your academic advisor.