Off-campus employment authorization is available to F-1 students who are facing severe economic hardship due to an unforeseen change in their financial circumstances.
The application is submitted to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Bureau (USCIS) and if authorized, the applicant will recieve an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) card. There is a $340 application fee to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and processing takes approximately 3 months.
The EAD card is issued for one year and is renewable. Students are able to work 20 hours a week when classes are in session and 40 hours a week during winter and summer breaks. Receiving this type of employment authorization does not affect eligibility for post-completion Optional Practical Training (OPT).
Students must have completed one academic year in F-1 status at USC and students are encouraged to try to find employment on campus before applying for this type of off campus employment authorization.
Students must have documentation of the unforeseen change in financial circumstances that necessitates the off-campus employment.
To begin the application process, students must make an appointment to meet with an OIS Counselor.