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On-Campus Work

On-campus work authorization can be approved by the Office of International Students and Scholars and does not require that a student submit an application to the Immigration Service. On campus work permission is limited to a maximum of 20 hours per week while school is in session and can be full-time during vacation periods (including summer break). Students must be full-time and in good academic standing during the academic year in order to apply. Additionally, international students are only eligible for non work-study positions. Aside from work for Boston College, the definition of what is considered to be "on-campus" includes:

  1. Off campus employment which has a contract-based educational affiliation with the University, is an integral part of the student's educational program, and is conducted under the supervision of a faculty advisor (for example, research which is part of a grant which is not payable through B.C.); and
  2. Commercial firms on campus which provide direct services to students even if they are not owned by B.C.

Additionally, students who are transferring to another school or have graduated and will be starting a new degree program at another school, are eligible to work on campus during the summer of this transition period. They can work either at the old school or at the new school as long as they have been issued an I-20 from the new school and are intending to enroll there fulltime in the fall.


Am I eligible to work on campus?

Undergraduate Students: If you are transferring from another American university or you are an exchange student you may be eligible to begin working your first semester.  All incoming freshmen will NOT be eligible to work until second semester.

Graduate Students:  If you have an assistantship or have attended a U.S. University prior to BC then you are eligible to begin working your first semester.  If not, you will need a letter from your academic department stating that you can handle working and academics (GCSOM student are exempt from the letter requirement).

 I am eligible, what do I do now?

All F-1 students are required to have both a letter of permission from OISS AND a job offer letter. You CANNOT apply for a social security number unless you have secured a job. 

1.   Find an on-campus job (graduate assistantships are considered on-campus work)  Student jobs are posted on the student services website:     

Important! You are eligible to work up to 20 hours per week on campus while school is in session and more than 20 hours per week during breaks (this limit includes graduate assistantships, stipends for leadership positions and any other hourly wages)

 2.   Ask your new employer complete the form “Statement Concerning F-1 Student’s Application for a Social Security Number The form must be printed on BC letterhead

 3.   Obtain an on-campus work permission letter from OISS  

Bring the above “Statement Concerning F-1 Student’s Application for a SSN” form to the OISS.  A work-permission letter will be done for you in 1-3 days.

4.   Apply for a Social Security Number (SSN)    

To obtain an SSN you will need to apply in person at the Social Security Office. You must be in the country for at least 10 days before you apply or you will not appear in the Social Security System.    

All applicants must present:

·  All immigration documents: Passport, I-94 card , SEVIS I-20 for F students (or DS-2019    
   for J students)

·  Work permission letter from OISS

·  Statement Concerning F-1 Student’s Application for a Social Security Number”


Social Security Office – Boston                       

10 Causeway Street, Room 148
Boston, MA 02222
(Green Line to North Station)

Open Monday-Friday 9am-3:30pm        


**Be sure to ask for a receipt. You will not get the Social Security card when you apply.  It will be shipped to the address you provide on your application.  It typically takes 2 weeks to arrive.  There is no fee you need to pay when you apply for the SSN** 

5.   Fill Out Tax Forms

Bring your SSN receipt and go to the Human Resource Service Center (129 Lake Street, Brighton Campus) to complete tax forms. For all students with regular on campus jobs (this does NOT include graduate assistantships) you will also need to go to Student Services in Lyons Hall with the work permission letter from the OISS to complete an I-9 form.

If you have any questions regarding work permission please contact the Office of International Students and Scholars at 617.552.8005 or email us at