On Campus Employment

Working on-campus is a great way to meet other UConn students, learn about U.S. culture, practice your English and earn a little money. Examples of on-campus employment may include working in the library, the dining halls, or as a teaching or research assistant for an academic department.

F-1 visa students are authorized to work in positions that qualify as on-campus employment without special authorization from ISSS. J-1 visa students must apply for employment authorization from ISSS before starting any on-campus employment, including research/teaching assistantships, and must be in good academic standing to qualify for employment authorization. Both F-1 and J-1 students working on campus will need to apply for a social security number if they do not already have one. 

J-1 students should submit the following to ISSS at least one week before your employment start date to obtain on-campus employment authorization:

  1. J-1 On Campus Employment Authorization Request  
  2. On Campus Employment Sample Offer Letter (template for employers)
  3. Full time enrollment verification - from UConn Registrar
  4. Up to date Medical Insurance Confirmation

All new student employees will need to meet with Payroll to fill out the appropriate federal and CT income withholding forms.  Visit: https://payroll.uconn.edu/non-resident-alien-nra-taxation/

On Campus Employment FAQs

How many hours can I work?  

F-1 students may work up to 20 hours per week during the semester in a job that qualifies as on-campus employment. During official UConn vacation periods, you are authorized to work more than 20 hours per week, although exceptions apply for students who are in programs with required summer session, or students who will graduate in summer. The UConn pay period is Friday - Thursday, and you should track your hours according to this schedule to avoid appearing that you have worked more hours than authorized. You are responsible to ensure that you do not work more than 20 hours per week. Working more than 20 hours per week during the academic semester is a violation of your F-1 visa status. J-1 students may be authorized to work the same amount of hours per week.

What are considered official UConn vacation periods?

Thanksgiving and spring breaks as well as winter and summer intersession periods are considered official vacation periods. However, if you are graduating in that winter or summer intersession, or if your academic program requires course enrollment during the intersession, these are not considered vacation periods and you are restricted to 20 hours per week. During Thanksgiving and spring break it is important to remember the UConn pay period is Friday - Thursday, and you should track your hours according to this schedule to avoid appearing that you have worked more than 20 hours during the week following Thanksgiving or spring break. 

We recommend that you wait until the first Friday after the semester ends before starting your on-campus employment on a full time basis, and end your full time on-campus employment the last Thursday before the start of the next semester. This way your full time work hours will align with the UConn pay week, which runs Friday to Thursday.  Likewise students should stop working full-time on the Thursday of Thanksgiving and Spring Break weeks so that you don't go over 20 hours for the following week.   

May I work more than 20 hours per week in summer if I will complete my program during summer term?

No. If you will complete your program during summer term, you are not considered to be in a vacation term, and must restrict your on-campus employment to 20 hours per week during your final summer.

May I work more than 20 hours per week if I am registered for courses during summer or winter intersession? 

If your program requires you to enroll in a summer or winter session, it is not considered a vacation term and you must restrict on-campus employment to 20 hours per week or less. If you have an I-20 form with a start date based on summer or winter intersession, you are also restricted to only 20 hours per week for that term. But if it is summer or winter intersession, and you choose to take classes to graduate more quickly or because certain classes are of interest to you, this is still considered a vacation term, and you may work more than 20 hours per week.

Can I work before my program starts and after my program ends?

F-1 students may work in the 30 day period before the session start date listed on your Form I-20. New students must complete ISSS Online Check-In before starting employment. You may not work with on-campus employment authorization after the program end date listed on your Form I-20. J-1 visa students may only be authorized to work during the program dates listed on the Form DS-2019.

What type of jobs are considered “on-campus”?

For visa purposes, on campus employment authorization generally applies to jobs that take place on the UConn campus and are paid/employed by UConn. Examples include research/teaching assistantships, jobs in the dining hall or working in a University office. You must check with your ISSS advisor before accepting any position that does not clearly meet the above definition of on-campus employment.

I’m a graduate student. Does my Graduate Assistantship count toward my allowed work hours?

Yes. Your GA-ship is considered on-campus employment, and you may only work up to 20 hours per week. Because there is no time card associated with a GA-ship, we advise you to document your weekly hours worked to ensure that you do not exceed 20 work hours per week during the semester.

Where can I find student on-campus jobs?

The Office of Student Financial Aid-Student Employment lists available jobs under the JobX for UConn Students. International students may apply for Student Labor positions. International students may not apply for Work-Study positions, as these are jobs that are paid by a U.S. student’s government financial aid package. International students are not eligible for U.S. government financial aid.  

Can I hold more than one on-campus job at a time?

Yes. You are still limited to a total of 20 hours per week between all campus jobs.

How do I fill out the W-4 form? 

Your on-campus employer will give you a W-4 form to complete, which determines how much tax will be withheld from your paycheck. If you are a nonresident alien for tax purposes, there are special instructions to complete your form.  If you are a resident alien for tax purposes, follow the form instructions. The UConn VITA program explains how to determine if you are a nonresident alien or resident alien for tax purposes.

What do I do with my Social Security Number?

All students with paid employment must apply for a Social Security Number (SSN). After you receive your Social Security Number, you must contact UConn Payroll office to update your number. Additionally, you need to update your SSN in Student Admin.  Follow these instructions from the Bursar to update your SSN in Student Admin. 

What about taxes?

All international students who have paid employment will need to meet with the UConn payroll office and complete paperwork related to their tax status. You may or may not have money for Federal/State taxes withheld from each paycheck, depending on what country you are from and how much income you earn. At the beginning of each year, you will receive a W-2 wage statement from UConn in the mail that details how much money you earned in the prior year, and how much in taxes you have already paid. Save this form, as you will need it for your records, and to file a U.S./state tax return. ISSS will provide more information each Spring semester on how you can get help to file your tax returns. For more information on taxes please see Tax Information.

Where can I learn about UConn employment policies?

Student labor payroll policies may be found Student Employment – Employment Guide . Information for Graduate Assistants  can be found on the Graduate School website.