Is work easier than college

Working in the USA while studying

There is one thing you should also think about if you want to study in the USA and that is the question of whether or not to take a job there. There are tons of ways you can get a job in the US, but keep in mind that you will have to go through a variety of paperwork to actually take advantage of those opportunities. In this chapter we want to find out what you have to do to get a job in the USA. It is easier to find a job on campus as an international student than to work off campus, but if you follow certain rules and regulations you can also work outside the university.

Most international students studying in the US get what is known as an F-1 visa. This visa is for those entering the United States for a limited period of time. Those with such a visa are allowed to work in the USA, but only if certain conditions are met and guidelines and limits are adhered to, which have been established by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS). Many of these regulations correspond to what you can read on your visa.

Working on campus

As mentioned above, it is much easier to get a job on campus than outside of the university. Jobs on campus include the following jobs, according to USCIS.

  • Work that is awarded by the university and performed directly for the university. This includes, for example, jobs in connection with scientific work or assistant jobs. These are two great ways to earn money for your studies.
  • Jobs at companies that are located on campus and provide a service for students or the campus. This includes, for example, the university's Buchlanden or the cafeteria. However, this does not include companies that have been hired by the university to carry out renovations or construction work, for example.
  • Work that is not carried out directly on campus but is related to university education. The connection with the education has to be compared to the curriculum and the job has to fit the course of study of the student and be an important part of the education.

The work on campus is usually limited and highly sought after, and it often has nothing to do with your studies (unless it falls into the last category). Even if you get a job on campus, it may not count as proof of your financial resources. You must also get an official permit from the International Office before you can work as an international student on the campus of your university. In addition, the following regulations must be observed:

  1. You must have a valid F-1 visa as long as you are employed on campus. If you lose this status, you can no longer continue the activity.
  2. You can work up to 20 hours a week during the lecture period; other rules may come into force during the semester break.
  3. During vacations or bank holidays, you can work full-time on campus if you apply for the next semester. If your studies are already finished, you can no longer work on campus. See the next point on off-campus work.
  4. Your attitude must not take away an American's job or replace an American. If that is the case, you are not allowed to accept the position.

Even if it sounds difficult to find a job on campus, it is worth the effort. The international office of your university can certainly help you find out what kind of jobs there are and how you can get a job on campus.

Jobs that you can take off-campus with an F-1 visa

There are several types of off-campus employment that you can accept with your visa and international student status. No matter what kind of offers you get, you are not allowed to work in the USA during your first year in the USA. After this first year, the following options are available to you as an international student:

  • Voluntary practical training (OPT), which you can complete before or after you graduate from university. This includes jobs in an area related to your degree and degree.
  • Compulsory practical training (CPT), this includes internships and practical courses that are prescribed in your study regulations.
  • Severe Economic Distress - If a student has financial problems because they cannot get a job while studying in the United States, they can get permission to work off campus while studying.
  • Recognized international organizations. These organizations specifically offer jobs for international students and follow certain rules in the United States to offer those jobs.

To be eligible for any of these jobs, you need to go through certain bureaucratic processes. USCIS will help you with this and provide you with the information you need to be able to work off campus in your of the above cases.

If you have more questions about working in the United States, the best thing to do is to check the website of the United States Immigration and Citizenship Office. There you will find all information about paperwork and other important things you have to consider if you want to work in the USA. The International Office and the relevant advisors at your university can also help you to find your way around this system of rules.