International Student Services
International Student Services supports and enhances the academic, social and personal experience of all international students at Minneapolis College.
The office can help you get answers to questions related to international student services.
For complete instructions, please visit our Application webpage.
On-campus employment opportunities for international students are limited and not guaranteed. Students can find open positions on the Minneapolis College Job Bank. The hiring cycle coincides with the transition between terms (August, December/January and May. Students can make an appointment to get help from Career Services (T.2500) with resume and cover letter writing if necessary.
- Active F-1 status.
- Enrolled as a full time student at Minneapolis College.
- F-1 students must apply for a Social Security card after receiving a job offer and complete all paperwork with Human Resources before starting the position.
- F-1 and J-1 students can work on-campus for a maximum of 20 hours/week during the fall and spring semesters. During summer and school vacations student may work up to 40 hours/week.
Off Campus Employment options: Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
CPT allows a student to work in a job directly to the student’s major area of study before degree completion.
- Active F-1 status
- Completed one academic year (2 semesters)
- Must be a currently enrolled in an internship class (at least 1 credit) that is a part of the program curriculum.
- Must obtain a job or internship directly related to current field of study
- Can be paid or unpaid employment
- Must receive authorization (including job offer letter) from International Student Advisor (who will print a new I-20) before beginning employment.
- Can be Part Time (20 hours a week or less) or Full Time (over 20 hours a week)
- Eligibility for OPT is void if student completes 2 semesters of Full Time CPT.
Optional Practical Training (OPT)
OPT must also be directly related to the student’s major area of study. Most students who take advantage of OPT apply for Post-Completion OPT, and work full time after graduation, but some will choose to apply for Pre-Completion OPT and work while attending classes. Pre completion OPT is limited to 20 hours a week or less during the Fall and Spring semesters.
- The I-765 application with USCIS for the Employment Authorization Document (EAD) which requires a 3-4 month processing period.
- Active F-1 status
- Completed one academic year (2 semesters)
- Apply for post completion OPT no more than 90 days before your program end date and no later than 55 days after your program end date.
- No offer letter is required for the OPT application but students on OPT cannot exceed 90 days of unemployment during the 12 month OPT authorized period.
- To apply: Meet with International Student Advisor (T.2500) to go over the US Customs and Immigration Services I-765 application for an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) or work permit which requires a 3-4 month processing period.
Your visa status refers to your ability to follow the regulations of the F-1 visa, outlined by the Student and Exchange Visitor Program and tracked by your school’s Designated School Official through the Student and Exchange Visitor Information System (SEVIS).
It is your responsibility to maintain F-1 student status.
In order to Maintain Status, it is important to make sure you:
- Have a valid passport- If your passport is expiring in the next 6 months, start the process to apply for a new passport through the nearest embassy or consulate.
- Attend classes at the school that issued your I-20
- Are enrolled in a full course of study (12 credits) during academic year (Fall and Spring semesters)
- Meet the minimum 9 or more credits in-person or blended/hybrid credits (must still meet 12 credit minimum)
- Students must make normal progress toward graduation and avoid being placed on academic suspension by making sure your Grade Point Average or GPA is at least a 2.0. (C average) and you complete at least 67 percent of the courses you attempt.
- International Students may not fall below 12 credits at any time during the semester. At times, instructor will request the Records Office to drop a student from a course in the middle of a semester due to a lack of attendance/participation. To avoid an administrative drop by your instructor, attend classes regularly, participate and submit coursework in a timely manner, ask for help and communicate with your instructor if you are struggling or get sick. Should you figure out that a professor dropped your enrollment from a course and you now have less than 12 credits for the semester, contact the International Student Advisor in T.2500 as soon as possible.
- Students must also follow all employment regulations. Working off campus without authorization will result in losing active visa status. Please see the International Student Employment Options section above for more information
The I-20 should be signed each time you leave the U.S. and want to reenter. You will make an appointment to see your international student advisor in T.2500 at least one full month before your scheduled travel date. In some cases, the international student advisor will need to endorse your I-20 on page 3 so that you can reenter the U.S.; in others, it may be necessary to prepare a new I-20 for you. The signature is typically good for one year of travel unless you have graduation and are now on post-completion practical training, in which case it is only good for 6 months.
Every F-1 student or F-2 dependent will need to present these documents to reenter the U.S.:
- Properly endorsed and valid I-20 form
- Evidence of financial support
- Valid passport with a valid U.S. entry visa stamp
- All previously issued I-20's to document your F-1 history in the U.S.
- Employment Authorization Document and proof of employment if you are in engaged in optional practical training after completion of studies
If you need to travel outside the U.S. and have an expired U.S. entry visa, a new entry visa may be required to re-enter the U.S. Even if you do not have immediate plans to travel outside the U.S. and the visa stamp in your passport is expired, you may still want to renew your visa. Student visas cannot be renewed within the United States.
If you need to renew your visa to re-enter the U.S., you must apply in person to a U.S. Consulate or Embassy. These offices are only located outside of the United States and they hold regular office hours.
- There may be significant delays before a visa application is approved. Applications should be submitted to the U.S. embassy or consulate as soon as possible.
- Many U.S. embassies/consulates require pre-arranged appointments.
- Check the embassy/consulate website or contact the post directly for information on scheduling.
There may be a need for a security clearance before a visa will be granted. Whether you will need a security clearance will depend upon your nationality, country of citizenship, countries visited in the past and your field of study or expertise. The security clearance will minimally take 20 days and may take as long as 6 months.
For an F non-immigrant visa application, the embassy or consulate minimally requires:
- A SEVIS-generated I-20 that accurately reflects the degree program, major and financial resources and contains a valid reentry signature on page 3
- Financial support documentation
- A transcript from each school attended in the U.S.
- Evidence of a student's intent to return home upon the completion of studies in the U.S.
- Employment Authorization Document (EAD) if authorized Optional Practical Training
- A visa application (form DS-156 and DS-158) and fee. There is a supplemental application (DS-157) that must be completed by all male visa applicants between the ages of 16 and 45.
- It is also recommended that students present a letter from his/her international student advisor that states s/he has maintained good progress toward completion of their educational program, etc.
For more information and to view the applications visit here.