Resources for International Students

At Mount Marty University, we are here to support you and help you thrive as you experience your education at an American Institution. 

The decision to study in the United States was likely not an easy one, and there were many steps to obtain your Student Visa. Now that you are a full-time student, Mount Marty University is dedicated to ensuring that you are fully advised of your rights and responsibilities as an F-1 Visa Student. The Office of Career and International Support is here to serve as a resource to answer any questions that you may have about studying, working and traveling as an F-1 Visa student. There will be programs and meetings throughout the year to help to guide you and keep you informed throughout your college career.  

As an F-1 Visa student, it will be your responsibility to maintain contact with the Office of Career and International Support.  

This webpage will provide you with some helpful information about your status as an F-1 Visa Student. 

The following information has been adapted from studyinthestates.gov.  For more in-depth information please visit https://studyinthestates.dhs.gov/

Maintaining STatus

While studying at Mount Marty, it is important to maintain your student status. While you are studying at Mount Marty your F-1 Visa status is considered Active.  In order for you to continue to study, you must keep your Visa Status Active. We call this process maintaining Status.   

Here are your requirements to maintain your status step by step:

  • Enter the United States no more than 30 days before your program of study begins.
  • Immediately contact your designated school official (DSO) when you enter the United States.
  • When you arrive at school, you need to contact your DSO again, no later than the program start date listed on your I-20.

While studying at Mount Marty F-1 students must:

  • Attend and pass all your classes.
  • If you believe that you will be unable to complete your program by the end date listed on your I-20, talk with your DSO about requesting a possible program extension.
  • You must take at least 12 credits (full-time status) each semester. 
  • Do not drop a class without first speaking with your DSO.

Mount Marty has an Annual Summer Vacation for all students. You may travel home or stay in the United States during this annual vacation. You are not required to take classes, however that may be an option for you.  

Once you graduate, you must take action to maintain legal status or depart the United States.

Once you complete your program of study and any authorized period of practical training, F students have 60 days after completion of your program (the program end date on your Form I-20) to leave the United States. If you wish to extend your stay in the United States, talk with your DSO to learn more about doing one of the following:

  • Change your major, program, or degree level.
  • Change your education level.
  • Transfer to a new school or take a leave of absence.
  • Take a break from school.
  • Travel outside the United States.
  • Move to a new address.
  • Request a program extension.

Employment Options as an F-1 Visa Student

If you are studying at MMU as an F-1 Visa student, there are strict employment restrictions for your immigration status.

Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is a paid internship program that is regulated by the Student Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP).  

International students are not allowed to work off campus unless it is a part of an internship program offered through Mount Marty University.  

Mount Marty University requires an internship as a part of a student’s graduation requirement.

CPT is only available to students who have completed one academic year of study in the United States and are currently in good academic standing (2.0 or above for undergraduates, 3.0 or above for graduates).  

In order to qualify for the CPT Program students must complete the following procedures:

1. Meet with your academic advisor to sign up for internship credit. 

2. Complete the Internship Request form provided from the Registrar’s office. 

3. Complete the CPT Request form. 

Download the CPT Request Form Here

4. Provide copies to the PDSO for CPT Authorization. 

Some notes about CPT

  • CPT is only available one semester at a time.
  • CPT allows a MAXIMUM of 20 hours per week.
  • Summer CPT is only available if you have secured a summer internship and are completing internship credit through summer terms. 

Any work that is completed off campus that is not a part of the CPT program or any hours that are completed beyond the 20 hours per week is considered unauthorized employment and is punishable by termination of the I-20. 

Campus employment is available through the financial aid office on a first come first serve basis.   Campus Employment is a work-study job on campus that is limited to a set amount of hours each semester.

Students receive a monthly paycheck that can be put towards either tuition, fees or personal expenses.  

There is no need for DSO approval to participate in the Campus Employment Program. 

If you are interested in Campus Employment, please go to the financial aid office to discuss availability.

If your financial situation has drastically changed after arriving in the United States, you may be eligible to apply for work authorization through financial hardship. Factors that could create financial hardship include but are not limited to:

  • Natural Disasters
  • War/Military Conflict
  • National/International Financial Crisis.

If you would like to discuss the option of working under financial hardship please make an appointment to discuss your options with your DSO.  

Occupational Practical Training (OPT) is a program that allows F-1 Visa students one year of work experience in a job related to their major after program completion. 

To receive OPT, a student must apply for work authorization first.

A student can apply for OPT up to 90 days before the completion of their program and up to 60 days after completion of the program.

There is no need to secure a job before applying for OPT. 

Applying for OPT can be a smooth process when done correctly and within the designated period. However, the OPT application is a lengthy process so the sooner a student applies within their designated window the sooner they will receive the ability to work after program completion.

OPT is good for one year only.

A student cannot work while they are waiting for their OPT application to be approved.

Access the OPT ChecklisT And Frequently Asked Questions  

Access the Application Information and Forms

If you are interested in learning more about applying for OPT then please make an appointment with your DSO.

In order to participate in any of the work programs available a student must apply for a social security card with a social security number.  

Your DSO can also help you apply for a social security card.  

Learn More