As a way to more fully understand your new learning environment, you may want to consider getting a job during your stay.

Employment is a benefit granted by the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) to eligible F-1 visa students who have been in good academic standing and have not violated any F-1 status rules and regulations. You should always consult an International Student Advisor first to check your eligibility before searching for a job.

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Many international students are interested in volunteering their time during their stay in the United States for a variety of reasons, like serving others or strengthening their transfer applications. You may wish to participate in a campus club service event, help out at a food bank, or volunteer in a company in your field, perhaps to “shadow” or observe to gain real-world experience. While the issue of volunteering may seem clear-cut (“I’m not getting paid, therefore I am not working”), it is actually complex and involves immigration regulations and labor law. Some of these activities are legally acceptable, and some are not. Generally any type of volunteer work that is related to a campus club activity is approved. Volunteering off-campus might not be approved. To avoid problems with your visa, please check with the International Student Center before engaging in volunteer activities that are not connected with a student club or a charitable organization.