Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
"An F-1 student may be authorized by an International Student Advisor 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 8 C.F.R. § 214.2(F)(10)(i)".
The International Center will determine the eligiblity on a case by case basis.
- Completion of an academic year in valid F-1 visa status and in good academic
- Completion of one full academic year for graduate and undergraduate coursework at Cal Poly
- Support from an Academic Advisor or Internship Coordinator in the student’s academic department.
CPT must be authorized and a new I-20 issued before employment begins
- Enrollment in an internship course in the student’s major is required if credit is offered. CPT will be authorized while you take the internship course.
- If internship credit is not available, an Academic Advisor or Internship Coordinator approves the employment for collecting research data or verifies that the employment is integral to the Polytechnic philosophy.
- CPT is authorized one quarter at a time. Failure to work without renewing work authorization is a violation of F-1 Visa regulations. Do not assume consecutive terms will be approved. Seek approval prior to continued employment.
- CPT is authorized part-time (20 hours or less per week) for specific dates of employment for a specific employer during an academic term. CPT can be full-time during official university breaks and summer term with approval.
- 12 or more months of full-time CPT authorization makes a student ineligible to apply for Optional Practical
How to Apply
- Pick-up a CPT application form at the International Center’s Front Desk or download the CPT form
- Seek support from the academic department regarding eligibility and availability of internship course credit.
- Once employment is secured, complete Section 1 of the Clearance Form and attach a job offer letter or business card from the employer.
- Ask the Academic Advisor or Internship Coordinator to complete Section 2 of the Clearance.
- Bring the completed CPT form to the International Center and meet with an International Center Advisor.
- Pick up the endorsed CPT I-20 and begin the new job.
*Students cannot begin employment until they have CPT authorization.
**CPT is only available for the dates requested on the form.
***Each CPT request is reviewed on a case by case basis.