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Curricular Practical Training. Agenda. CPT Regulations & Guidance Who qualifies for CPT Creating an institutional policy Scenarios & Emailed Questions Additional Questions. What is Curricular Practical Training (CPT).

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Presentation Transcript
  • CPT Regulations & Guidance
  • Who qualifies for CPT
  • Creating an institutional policy
  • Scenarios & Emailed Questions
  • Additional Questions
what is curricular practical training cpt
What is Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
  • CPT is a type of employment authorization that allows qualified F-1 students to gain practical experience in their field of study while making progress towards the completion of their academic program
code of federal regulations 8 cfr 214 2 f
Code of Federal Regulations 8 CFR § 214.2(f)

214.2(f)(10)(i) Curricular practical training

An F-1 student may be authorized by the DSO to participate in a curricular practical training program that is an integral part of an established curriculum. Curricular practical training is defined to be alternative work/study, internship, cooperative education, or any other type of required internship or practicum that is offered by sponsoring employers through cooperative agreements with the school.

Students who have received one year or more of full time curricular practical training are ineligible for post-completion academic training.

Exceptions to the one academic year requirement are provided for students enrolled in graduate studies that require immediate participation in curricular practical training.

A request for authorization for curricular practical training must be made to the DSO. A student may begin curricular practical training only after receiving his or her Form I-20 with the DSO endorsement.

additional guidance
Additional Guidance
  • INS Memo CO 214.2F-C, 5/4/92 reported in Interpreter Releases, Vol. 69, No. 6, p.587
    • “When offered through course work, curricular training must be either for credit (in the case of an elective course) or required.”
further guidance
Further Guidance
  • INS Memo CO 243.69-C, 1/22/92 reported in Interpreter Releases, Vol. 69, No. 6, pp. 187-188
    • “The training program must be listed in the school’s course catalog with the assigned number of credits and the name of the faculty member teaching the course clearly indicated.”
integral part of an established curriculum
“Integral Part of an Established Curriculum”
  • Degree requirement CPT – graduation requirement for all students in the degree program (may not carry units)
  • Co-op CPT – pre-existing relationship between school & employer, credit not necessary, not required of all students
  • Course credit – a required or elective internship/practicum within a degree program
regulations who qualifies for cpt
Regulations:Who Qualifies for CPT?
  • An F-1 student with a job offer that is directly related to student’s field of study
  • F-1 student in status for at least 1 academic year, excluding those at language schools
    • From 214.2(f)(10)(i): “Exceptions to the one academic year requirement are provided for students enrolled in graduate studies that require immediate participation in curricular practical training.”
regulations limits of cpt
Regulations:Limits of CPT
  • CPT is not available once a student completes the degree
  • 12 months of full time CPT will eliminate OPT at the same degree level
  • Student must obtain CPT authorization prior to start date
the balancing act how to establish an institutional policy
The Balancing Act – How to establish an institutional policy

Faculty Demands

Spirit of the law

Institutional Structure


Campus policy on external employment

Professional Enrichment

Academic Necessity

F-1 Regulations

what institutional policy can determine
What Institutional Policy Can Determine
  • Limits on Part Time/Full Time*
  • Definition of “enrolled”*
  • Start/End Date – must they correspond with enrollment?*
  • Minimum GPA (if any)
  • Legitimacy of work-credit relationship
  • Number of credits earned
  • Number of times a student can use CPT
establishing policy
Establishing Policy
  • Consult with university legal counsel
  • Establish a policy and document it
  • Apply it consistently
  • Maintain application materials to document a “good faith” effort:
    • Academic Advisors recommendation letter
    • Job offer letter (optional)
    • Proof of course enrollment (optional)
make the academic advisor work for you
Make the Academic Advisor Work for You!
  • The academic advisor can attest to:
    • Relevance of the work to the major and to the level
    • Number of credits awarded for work
    • Whether the internship will count towards a student’s degree program
    • Exceptions necessitated by academic requirements
cpt recommendation a joint process
CPT Recommendation: A Joint Process
  • The academic advisor within a credit-granting unit evaluates the internship and determines whether it is “directly related to the student's major area of study”
  • International Student Adviser recommends CPT in SEVIS based on academic advisor’s recommendation.
application materials make it easy and accessible
Application materials: Make it easy and accessible
  • Create a fillable form to collect all data, signature, & comments
  • Use a form letter
  • Create a handout for distribution in office
  • Put all materials online so students, faculty, advisors, and employers can have access
scenario 1 question
Scenario 1: Question
  • An undergraduate student majoring in Liberal Arts wants to work in a paternity testing lab. How does the DSO determine if this work is applicable to the major and eligible for CPT?
  • Does the course need to correspond with the work?
scenario 1 from the regulations
Scenario 1: From the Regulations
  • Has the academic advisor recommend this internship as an integral part of the degree program?
  • Will the student use coop or course credit CPT?
scenario 1 from the institution
Scenario 1: From the Institution
  • Have you established a start date/end date policy for course credit and coop CPT?
  • Does this employer & the university have a coop relationship?
scenario 2 question
Scenario 2: Question
  • Do the authorized number of hours/week need to correlate with the number of units offered? For example, you know that 1-unit internship class only requires 5 hours of work per week but the employer letter indicates that the student will work up to 20 hours per week.
  • Should you approve this CPT request?
scenario 2 from the regulations
Scenario 2: From the Regulations
  • SEVIS offers two types of CPT recommendations
    • Part Time: 20 hours or less per week
    • Full Time: More than 20 hours per week
  • Due to SEVIS functionality, you cannot restrict students any further in hours per week.
scenario 2 from the institution
Scenario 2: From the Institution
  • The institution can set a part time/full time policy based on semester vs. summer CPT
  • As an institution, do you require or want to evaluate job offer letters?
  • Job offer letters could be evaluated by the academic advisor
scenario 3 question
Scenario 3: Question
  • The DSO was not aware of the CPT request until after the start of a internship. Is it a problem to enter the authorization in SEVIS after the term starts? Functionally, SEVIS allows you to put a past start date.
scenario 3 from the regulations
Scenario 3: From the Regulations
  • 214.2(f)(10)(i): A student may begin curricular practical training only after receiving his or her Form I-20 with the DSO endorsement.
  • 214.2(f)(10)(i)(B): The DSO must sign, date, and return the SEVIS Form I-20 to the student prior to the student's commencement of employment.
scenario 3 from the institution
Scenario 3: From the Institution
  • Clearly indicate this rule – everywhere!
  • Remind students to factor in document turn around time
  • Work done prior to CPT is unauthorized employment
  • If DSO error: contact SEVIS Help Desk or document in SEVIS RTI.
cpt frequency and duration
CPT Frequency and Duration
  • Students can be authorized for CPT
    • For a 2nd degree at the same degree level
    • For a higher degree level
    • For a lower degree level
  • CPT can be authorized FT or PT according to the regs
  • Reminder: 12 months of FT CPT at any one degree level will eliminate OPT at the same level
does cpt period need to correspond with course
Does CPT period need to correspond with course?
  • How will grade be assigned if internship takes place later?
  • Are there periods in the year where classes aren’t offered?
  • Example from Berkeley
    • CPT must fall within dates of course enrollment
      • Extension into winter based on academic exceptions because no credit is available.
    • CPT available throughout summer with enrollment in 1 summer session course
can students work on campus and get cpt
Can students work on campus and get CPT?
  • On Campus Employment
    • Incidental to status
    • 20 hours/week during semester
    • 214.2(f)(9)(i)
  • Limits on campus employment do not impact CPT hours/week
    • 20hrs on campus & 20hrs CPT = OK
    • 20hrs on campus & 40hrs CPT = OK
unpaid internship do i need cpt
Unpaid Internship: Do I Need CPT?
  • To protect the student, he or she should get CPT if there will be any compensation in exchange for the work:
    • Pay
    • Food
    • Other perks
questions for the employer
Questions for the employer
  • Employer-intern relationship: consultant, direct hire, intern, etc.
  • Social security/Medicare tax withholdings
  • I-9 required?