Skip to content

On Campus Employment

On Campus Employment

F-1 students are eligible to work on-campus while attending classes. The work does not need to be related to your field of study. You must maintain legal F-1 status while engaging in on-campus employment.  Some of the rules of on campus employment are:

   1. You must be enrolled full time during fall and spring semesters.

   2. You may work up to 20 hours per week while school is in session.
  • What is a "Work Week" at Wheaton?
    • At Wheaton College, a week is defined as the 7-day period from Sunday to Sunday.  
    • 20 hours per week does not mean the "average" number of hours you work during a semester.  It is the MAXIMUM number you can work per week.
    • The week of Fall break is not a full week of vacation so the 20-hour limit still applies.
    • Finals weeks, when exams are taking place, still count as non-vacation days and the 20-hour limit applies.
    • Students who receive graduate assistantships or leadership stipends must count this toward the 20-hour maximum.  These hours are not recorded in the Portal, so you will need to ask your supervisor for the "average hours" attributed to the position.  Subtract that number from 20 and that will give you the number of hours you can work in other campus jobs.
   3. You may work full-time (up to 40 hours per week) on-campus during official university holiday weeks.  This may include:
  • Weeks during the summer if or when you are not enrolled in summer school.
  • the three weeks of Christmas break.
  • the week of Spring break.
   4.  You may not engage in on-campus employment after the program end date listed on your I-20.

   5.  You must have a Social Security Number in order to get paid.  If you need a Social Security Number, learn how to apply for one here.
  • You can start working on campus before you receive the Social Security #.  You should apply for it as soon as possible after you have been offered a job and then bring the card with your number on it to the Payroll office in Blanchard as soon as you receive it.
  • Do NOT delay submitting your employment forms until you receive your Social Security #.  You can submit all your employment forms without the Social Security #.
   6.  You will not be eligible for any job that is called a "Work Study" position.  Work study is a form of Federal Financial Aid.

   7.   If you have been in the US for more than 5 years, you may meet the "Substantial Presence Test" This means that your income will be taxed at the same rate as a US citizen.  It is important to tell the Wheaton Payroll office if you have been in the US as an F-1 or F-2, J,M, or Q visa for more than 5 years at any time in your life.  Here is more information about the Substantial Presence Test.

Benefits to Working On Campus

Earn extra $$
Work experience looks good on resume.
Meet new people and make friends.
Develop communication skills and various other skills.
Learn to manage your time and juggle many projects at once.
Recommendation letters and personal references for future employment or education.

How to apply for an On Campus Job
  1. Attend the Part Time Job Fair (fall semester) to learn about on campus job options. Employers will have applications at their booths for you to complete and submit that same day. You may even interview at that day so come prepared to speak with employers.
  2. Use Handshake to search for on campus jobs and apply online.

Where to look for an On Campus Job
Almost every office and department has student workers, but here are a few places that hire many international students:
Sam's Cafe
Bon Appetit 
Foreign Language Department
Academic Departments

Tips for Getting a Job
Don't be afraid to apply for a job you are interested in but don't have much experience with.
Have confidence and be willing to try a new opportunity.
Approach prospective employers, in person or via email/phone.
Practice answering questions employers might ask.
Good personal hygiene and appropriate professional dress for interviews.

Good Luck!