On-Campus Work

International students, pursuing an MIT degree, are eligible for limited on-campus employment under Federal Regulations. Employment on-campus is limited to 20 hours per week maximum while school is in session, but may be more than 20 hours during official Institute vacation periods.  Institute vacation periods for purposes of on-campus employment are during the Independent Activity Period (IAP) and Summer vacation period.  IAP and Summer term are not considered a vacation period for students who start and end their programs during those terms.

Undergraduate Special Students and Graduate Special Students (Advance Study Program) are not eligible for on-campus employment at MIT.

An International Visiting Student is not allowed to pursue employment/job/position outside of the research activity with their host research group on campus at MIT. 

F-1 On-Campus Work Information

  Kind of Work Part-time/ 
Full-time   
Authorization granted by: Impact on Practical Training Remarks
Employment by MIT RA, TA, UROP, any work paid by MIT Part-time (up to 20 hours per week)
when school is in session. Full-time during annual vacations.
No authorization required, employment incident to status (must be an enrolled full-time student at MIT) None Full Research and Teaching Assistantships account for the 20 hours per week maximum of work allowed by USCIS while school is in session. No other on-campus job/position can be held at the same time if a student has a Full RA or TA award.
Employment on MIT premises Work with stores in the Student Center Part-time (up to 20 hours per week)
when school is in session. Full-time during annual vacations.
International Student Advisor can provide confirmation letter if needed by employer. None Students holding Full RAs or TAs cannot pursue other on-campus positions. 
On-Campus Employment at Contractually Affiliated Off-campus research location Work must fulfill all the following three conditions: (1) Location must be a contractually affiliated research location with MIT (affiliation must be through an MIT department or MIT faculty member); (2) Work must be part of the graduate program curriculum or related to a student's graduate research project; (3)The employment must be an integral part of the student's program of study. Part-time (maximum 20 hours per week)
when school is in session. Full-time during annual vacations.
Authorization letter from MIT ISO International Student Advisor must be issued before work activity begins. None Only Graduate Students are eligible. Students must submit to the ISO International Student Advisor a letter from their academic advisor giving detailed information about the activity, relationship to the student's academic work, and confirmation of the contractual affiliation.

J-1 On-Campus Work Information

  Kind of Work Part-time/ 
Full-time   
Authorization granted by: Impact on Academic Training Remarks
Employment by MIT Research and Teaching Assistantships from MIT Part-time
(up to 20 hrs. per week) when school is in session. Full-time during Institute vacations.
No further authorization is required, if assistantship is included on Form DS-2019. None Full Research and Teaching Assistantships account for the 20 hours per week maximum of work allowed by USCIS while school is in session. No other on-campus job/position can be held at the same time if a student has a Full RA or TA award.
Employment on MIT premises Work for offices or departments on MIT campus and paid by MIT. Part-time
(up to 20 hrs. per week) when school is in session. Full-time during Institute vacations.
Written authorization from Visa Sponsor (ISO International Student Advisor if DS-2019 was issued by MIT). None Full Research and Teaching Assistantships account for the 20 hours per week maximum of work allowed by USCIS while school is in session. No other on-campus job/position can be held at the same time if a student has a Full RA or TA award.

J-1 On-Campus Employment Notes:

  • Only students who are full-time students and maintaining J-1 status are eligible for on-campus work.
  • The MIT ISO must authorize each on-campus job separately for J-1 students. The ISO must re-authorize employment once per year if you are continuing employment on-campus with the same department (new authorization letter required each academic year).
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