Employment for F-1 and J-1 students is limited, and working without permission is a violation of status and a deportable offense. F-1 and J-1 students may not work off campus without written permission from International Student and Scholar Advising (ISSA). On-campus employment is permitted with certain restrictions. J-1 students must request permission for on-campus employment via iStart. A Social Security number is required for anyone receiving payment. ISSA can assist you with this process.

ISSA offers workshops every semester that explain the different types of off-campus work permission available to F-1 and J-1 students.

J-1 International Interns

Hosting International Interns

International Interns support the mission of the Fulbright-Hays Act as part of the Exchange Visitor Program which fosters global understanding through educational and cultural exchanges. International Interns come to the United States in J-1 status. Interns are not “employees” in the traditional sense; rather, they are current foreign undergraduate university students of foreign universities who are seeking to enhance their skills through work-based learning and cultural exchange. As the intern’s supervisor, you will host and assist him/her in gaining those skills and building knowledge of American techniques, methodologies, and technology.

Interns may be paid, but payment is not a requirement of the internship. Interns must be regularly supervised and mentored throughout the internship, which can last between 3 weeks minimum and 12 months maximum. They must meet the goals set forth in the Trainee/Intern Participation Plan, which you and your intern will complete together, and they must be evaluated at regular intervals. You will work closely with the intern and with International Student and Scholar Advising (ISSA) throughout the internship. It is also important to note that all exchange visitors are expected to return to their home country and undergraduate university studies upon completion of their program in order to share their exchange experiences.

Interns come in J-1 status under the Department of State to foster global understanding. They are expected to participate in social and cultural activities to learn about Americans and the U.S. as well as teach Americans about their countries and culture, with the hope they establish long-lasting relationships.

Only requests for interns made by an academic department will be considered. Please email ISSA-Adviser@psu.edu for more information.