Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is authorization for paid or unpaid employment that is an integral part of the established curriculum. Students must be a full-time student for one academic year and in a valid F-1 status to be eligible to apply for CPT. CPT is available during (not after) a course of study and must be authorized by ISS every term and every time a student changes employer. There is no limit to part-time (less than 20 hours per week) CPT. However, a student who does 12 months or more of full-time Curricular Practical Training forfeits all Optional Practical Training. CPT can be authorized full-time or part-time during the year or in summer. Students must complete the CPT appointment with ISS prior to their first day of work

One of the following situations must exist for Curricular Practical Training to be authorized by an advisor in ISS:

  • The work must be part of an internship or practicum that is required of all students in that program. The "academic year of full-time enrollment" requirement can be waived if a graduate program requires all students to participate in an internship before the first academic year is met (example: MS Accounting).
  • A work experience is required by a particular course in which a student is enrolled, such as an internship, practicum or directed study. ISS will only authorize CPT for the semester which this course is required. Please consult with individuals in your academic program about how to enroll in an appropriate course.
  • The work must be directly related to a specific course that you are currently registered in
      • The offer letter must directly state that the employer agrees to cooperate with St. Thomas in achieving the curricular purposes of the employment/ training.

* All CPT authorizations are made in semester/term increments and students must be registered for at least one credit course for the term in which they are authorized for CPT.

Application Process

  1. Verify that you are eligible for CPT according to one of the three situations described.
  2. Once you have an internship offer, get a letter from your employer describing the job title, job responsibilities, starting and ending dates of employment, number of hours per week, confirmation that the employer agrees to cooperate with St. Thomas in achieving the curricular purposes of the employment and place of employment on official company letterhead.
  3. Complete the Curricular Practical Training Form‌. 
  4. Contact your academic department about registering for the appropriate course and sign-up for this course with your academic advisor.
  5. Make an appointment with an ISS advisor by calling 651 962-6650 and bring:
    1. completed ISS CPT form
    2. letter from your employer
    3. proof of registration for internship course OR program catalog with statement that internship or practicum is required for the degree.

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