2 Agenda CPT Regulations & Guidance Who qualifies for CPT Creating an institutional policyScenarios & ed QuestionsAdditional Questions
3 What is Curricular Practical Training (CPT) CPT is a type of employment authorization that allows qualified F-1 students to gain practical experience in their field of study while making progress towards the completion of their academic program
4 Code of Federal Regulations 8 CFR § 214.2(f) 214.2(f)(10)(i) Curricular practical trainingAn F-1 student may be authorized by the DSO 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.Students who have received one year or more of full time curricular practical training are ineligible for post-completion academic training.Exceptions to the one academic year requirement are provided for students enrolled in graduate studies that require immediate participation in curricular practical training.A request for authorization for curricular practical training must be made to the DSO. A student may begin curricular practical training only after receiving his or her Form I-20 with the DSO endorsement.
5 Additional GuidanceINS Memo CO 214.2F-C, 5/4/92 reported in Interpreter Releases, Vol. 69, No. 6, p.587“When offered through course work, curricular training must be either for credit (in the case of an elective course) or required.”
6 Further GuidanceINS Memo CO C, 1/22/92 reported in Interpreter Releases, Vol. 69, No. 6, pp“The training program must be listed in the school’s course catalog with the assigned number of credits and the name of the faculty member teaching the course clearly indicated.”
7 “Integral Part of an Established Curriculum” Degree requirement CPT – graduation requirement for all students in the degree program (may not carry units)Co-op CPT – pre-existing relationship between school & employer, credit not necessary, not required of all studentsCourse credit – a required or elective internship/practicum within a degree program
8 Regulations: Who Qualifies for CPT? An F-1 student with a job offer that is directly related to student’s field of studyF-1 student in status for at least 1 academic year, excluding those at language schoolsFrom 214.2(f)(10)(i): “Exceptions to the one academic year requirement are provided for students enrolled in graduate studies that require immediate participation in curricular practical training.”
9 Regulations: Limits of CPT CPT is not available once a student completes the degree12 months of full time CPT will eliminate OPT at the same degree levelStudent must obtain CPT authorization prior to start date
10 The Balancing Act – How to establish an institutional policy Faculty DemandsSpirit of the lawInstitutional StructureDocumentationCampus policy on external employmentProfessional EnrichmentFaculty Demands – is your policy going to fly with them; institutional culture – is it centralized/decentralized, how many academic advisors does a student have, is this person faculty or staff; Professional enrichment – how active is the institution in promoting external experiences (some colleges want students to focus on the theoretical; academic necessity – are practicum built into programs or not, do internship courses exist?Spirit of law – are you acting in good faith; documentation – what do you need to document your good faith efforts; F-1 regulations – are you doing your due diligence to enforce these regulations?Academic NecessityF-1 Regulations
11 What Institutional Policy Can Determine Limits on Part Time/Full Time*Definition of “enrolled”*Start/End Date – must they correspond with enrollment?*Minimum GPA (if any)Legitimacy of work-credit relationshipNumber of credits earnedNumber of times a student can use CPTIs your office prepared to take responsibility and the heat for limiting opportunities that may have a direct impact on a students’ academic and practical experiences? Remember, that students talk between schools – do you want lots of rumors flying about you being too strict. Advising Stance – an enforcer, advocate, an enabler?We wouldn’t want academic advisors setting immigration policy, so are we really in the place to set academic policies? It will be more of a headache than it’s worth!
12 Establishing Policy Consult with university legal counsel Establish a policy and document itApply it consistentlyMaintain application materials to document a “good faith” effort:Academic Advisors recommendation letterJob offer letter (optional)Proof of course enrollment (optional)
13 Make the Academic Advisor Work for You! The academic advisor can attest to:Relevance of the work to the major and to the levelNumber of credits awarded for workWhether the internship will count towards a student’s degree programExceptions necessitated by academic requirements
14 CPT Recommendation: A Joint Process The academic advisor within a credit-granting unit evaluates the internship and determines whether it is “directly related to the student's major area of study”International Student Adviser recommends CPT in SEVIS based on academic advisor’s recommendation.
15 Application materials: Make it easy and accessible Create a fillable form to collect all data, signature, & commentsUse a form letterCreate a handout for distribution in officePut all materials online so students, faculty, advisors, and employers can have access
17 Scenario 1: QuestionAn undergraduate student majoring in Liberal Arts wants to work in a paternity testing lab. How does the DSO determine if this work is applicable to the major and eligible for CPT?Does the course need to correspond with the work?
18 Scenario 1: From the Regulations Has the academic advisor recommend this internship as an integral part of the degree program?Will the student use coop or course credit CPT?
19 Scenario 1: From the Institution Have you established a start date/end date policy for course credit and coop CPT?Does this employer & the university have a coop relationship?
20 Scenario 2: QuestionDo the authorized number of hours/week need to correlate with the number of units offered? For example, you know that 1-unit internship class only requires 5 hours of work per week but the employer letter indicates that the student will work up to 20 hours per week.Should you approve this CPT request?
21 Scenario 2: From the Regulations SEVIS offers two types of CPT recommendationsPart Time: 20 hours or less per weekFull Time: More than 20 hours per weekDue to SEVIS functionality, you cannot restrict students any further in hours per week.
22 Scenario 2: From the Institution The institution can set a part time/full time policy based on semester vs. summer CPTAs an institution, do you require or want to evaluate job offer letters?Job offer letters could be evaluated by the academic advisor
23 Scenario 3: QuestionThe DSO was not aware of the CPT request until after the start of a internship. Is it a problem to enter the authorization in SEVIS after the term starts? Functionally, SEVIS allows you to put a past start date.
24 Scenario 3: From the Regulations 214.2(f)(10)(i): A student may begin curricular practical training only after receiving his or her Form I-20 with the DSO endorsement.214.2(f)(10)(i)(B): The DSO must sign, date, and return the SEVIS Form I-20 to the student prior to the student's commencement of employment.
25 Scenario 3: From the Institution Clearly indicate this rule – everywhere!Remind students to factor in document turn around timeWork done prior to CPT is unauthorized employmentIf DSO error: contact SEVIS Help Desk or document in SEVIS RTI.
26 CPT Frequency and Duration Students can be authorized for CPTFor a 2nd degree at the same degree levelFor a higher degree levelFor a lower degree levelCPT can be authorized FT or PT according to the regsReminder: 12 months of FT CPT at any one degree level will eliminate OPT at the same level
27 Does CPT period need to correspond with course? How will grade be assigned if internship takes place later?Are there periods in the year where classes aren’t offered?Example from BerkeleyCPT must fall within dates of course enrollmentExtension into winter based on academic exceptions because no credit is available.CPT available throughout summer with enrollment in 1 summer session course
28 Can students work on campus and get CPT? On Campus EmploymentIncidental to status20 hours/week during semester214.2(f)(9)(i)Limits on campus employment do not impact CPT hours/week20hrs on campus & 20hrs CPT = OK20hrs on campus & 40hrs CPT = OK
29 Unpaid Internship: Do I Need CPT? To protect the student, he or she should get CPT if there will be any compensation in exchange for the work:PayFoodOther perksVolunteering usually takes place in a pre-established volunteer program or for charitable reasons. Students can’t volunteer at Bank of America! See Duke international office website for more info
30 Questions for the employer Employer-intern relationship: consultant, direct hire, intern, etc.Social security/Medicare tax withholdingsI-9 required?