International F-1 students are eligible to apply for a Social Securiy Number (SSN). The Social Security Administration (SSA) assigns the nine-digit SSN to report wages to the government, track Social Security benefits and for other identification purposes.


  1. Must be an F-1 student currently enrolled full-time (12 units)
  2. Maintain active F-1 status
  3. Have an Employer or Job Offer

How to Apply

Obtain an Employment Letter or Job Offer Letter from your hiring department. You can refer your hiring department to this template for examples of what to write in the letter.

If employer is not on the PCC campus, you will need to get additional employment authorization by through Curricular Practical Training (CPT) or Optional Practical Training (OPT). Consult with your International Advisor or attend a workshop to learn more.

The letter must:

  • Be on the hiring department's letterhead
  • Have an original signature from a hiring manager or supervisor
  • Include:
    • Employment start date
    • Position you are being hired for
    • How many hours you will work per week
    • Employer's ITIN number (if applicable)
    • Employer’s name; employer’s address; supervisor’s full name; telephone and email address

Obtain from the International Student Center the Social Security Verification Letter by submitting a Letter Request and attaching a copy of your job offer letter. It can take up to 10 business days for our office to issue you the Social Security Verification Letter. This letter will be emailed to your PCC email. 

Visit the Social Security Administration webpage to submit an online application for a new Social Security Number. After you have completed your online application, you have 45 days to visit your nearest Social Security Administration office to verify your identify, age and immigration status.

Visit your nearest Social Security Administration Office and bring the following documents with you:

These documents will prove your age, identity and immigration status. You must bring original documents or copies that are certified by the agency that issued them. Photocopies and notarized copies are not accepted.

Your Social Securiy Number/Card will be mailed to the address you listed in your application. It can take approximately 7 to 10 business days. 

To start work, your employer may need proof of your Social Security Number. Your Social Securiy Number/Card is extremely important as it is linked to you and your identity. Please do not lose it.