CPT via the University Career Center

Immigration regulations define CPT as training programs that are an integral part of an established curriculum; defined as alternate work/study, internship, cooperative education or any other type of required internship/practicum, which is offered by sponsoring employers through cooperative agreements with the school.

The ‘training’ may be required for a particular course but the course does not need to be a requirement of a particular program of study.

There are two options for CPT at UNC Charlotte:

  1. CPT via the Academic Department
  2. CPT via the University Career Center

You must choose only one option. The University Career Center can only assist with CPT via the University Career as outlined below. Contact the International Student and Scholar Office with any questions about CPT via the Academic Department.

Important dates and deadlines

Fall Internship Program Fall 2017

First day you can begin working

(As the beginning of the fall semester approaches, the ISSO will be busy welcoming new international students at the orientation program. Therefore, all CPT applications with start dates of 8/21 must be submitted to the UCC by Monday, July 31st at 5pm. The ISSO will not process CPT applications the week of August 14th but will resume normal processing as of August 21st.)

August 21, 2017
Last day you can work December 15, 2017

Deadline to request work authorization for fall 2017

October 26, 2017 by 5pm

 

Spring Internship Program

Spring 2018

First day you can begin working

(To start on January 8, we must receive your completed application via Hire-A-Niner by December 4, 2017 at 5pm)

January 8, 2018
Last day you can work May 10, 2018

Deadline to request work authorization for  spring 2018

March 22, 2018, by 5pm

 

Student eligibility requirements

Graduate Students

  • Must have been in lawful student status for one full academic year (2 semesters)
  • Must be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum of 9 credit hours
  • Must have completed 9 earned credit hours at UNC Charlotte
  • Must have a minimum overall GPA of 3.0
  • Must be in good standing with the University with no financial holds over $99
  • There is a one-semester exception to the full-time student requirement during your final semester of coursework
  • Must work via the Internship Program. The Co-op Program is only open to undergraduate students.
  • Students who are enrolled in a Ph.D. program, enrolled only in “thesis/dissertation” or enrolled in a course requiring an internship should consider applying for CPT via the Academic Department instead.

Undergraduate Students

  • Must have been in lawful student status for one full academic year (2 semesters)
  • Must be enrolled as a full-time student (minimum of 12 credit hours)
  • Must have completed 30 earned credit hours at UNC Charlotte before you begin working (12 as a transfer student)
  • Must have a minimum overall GPA of 2.0 for Internship Program and 2.5 for Co-op
  • Must be in good standing with the University with no financial holds over $99
  • There is a one-semester exception to the full-time student requirement during your final semester of coursework

Internship position eligibility requirements

Internship/Co-op Job Description

  • Your internship or co-op job description must provide a detailed overview of your daily activities and responsibilities as well as the skills you will be using and learning throughout your work experience.
  • Over 50% of your work responsibilities must be directly related to your current major. We cannot consider previous degrees when approving a position description.

Location

  • There are no location restrictions for summer internships or co-ops.
  • Fall and spring internships must be located within a 1.5-hour driving distance from the University: 9201 University City Blvd, Charlotte, NC 28223.
  • We will consider remote internships as long as you will be working in a supervised, structured environment with regular check-ins with your internship supervisor.

Remote Internships

While internships allowing students to work remotely will be considered, the employer's offer letter must clearly state…

  1. The name of the direct supervisor who will monitor the virtual assignment.
  2. How often the student's progress will be checked.
  3. The technology used to communicate between supervisor and student (Skype, email, etc.).

1099 Independent Contractor Employment

F1 students cannot be hired as Independent Contractors requiring a 1099 Form as part of the employment arrangement. Students must be hired as an actual employee, in an established, structured, company internship that adheres to UNC Charlotte's CPT/Internship criteria, per the University Career Center and International Student and Scholar policies.

Third Party Employer Opportunities

On occasion, employers will use "Third-Party Employers," to help them recruit, hire, and pay talent. Third Party Employers are defined as agencies, organizations, or individuals recruiting candidates for temporary, part-time, or full-time employment opportunities other than for their own needs. The University Career Center has specific policies about working with Third Party Employers, which are informed by the National Association of Colleges and Employers (NACE) and outlined on our website.

Foremost among our policies we require that "Third-Party Employers must disclose in Hire-A-Niner the name of the organization and position(s) that is being recruited for; this information will be viewable by UCC staff only (not students or alumni)."

The UNC Charlotte University Career Center is concerned that opportunities to be designated "internships" and approved for Curricular Practical Training (CPT) for F-1 international students comply with safety, quality, and accountability standards set by national professional practice and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services regulations. International students seeking CPT via the UCC can assist us in this assurance by asking Third Party Employers who want to extend letters of offer to provide the University Career Center the following: 

  1. The name of the contracting organization and their main contact at that organization.
  2. An official job description containing the job title, job description with learning objectives/goals, desired qualifications, skills and knowledge needed, and desired major(s) as each relates to the student's academic course work.
  3. A letter of offer which is written on company letterhead, containing the prospective employer's name, the name of the direct supervisor of the student within the company location, the physical location/address of proposed internship (no P.O. Boxes), a start date and end date of employment, and the number of work hours per week. 

CPT Via the University Career Center will not be approved if the above steps are not followed explicitly.

F-1 International students with questions about their offer through a Third Party Employer or Third Party representatives, themselves, are asked to use our "Who to Contact with Questions" web link to get answers.

Hours Per Week

  • Internships must last a minimum of 80 hours and 5 weeks.
  • Summer internships may be full-time or part-time.
  • Fall and spring internships must be 20 hours per week or less.
  • All co-ops are full-time.

Documentation required to request work authorization

Offer Letter

Your offer letter must meet the following criteria:

  • Written on company letterhead
  • Contain prospective CPT employer's name
  • Physical location/address of proposed internship (no P.O. Boxes)
  • Start date of employment (view the important dates above)
  • End date of employment (view the important dates above)
  • Number of work hours per week

Failure to include all of these items will result in your CPT authorization being denied.

Remote Internships

While internships allowing students to work remotely will be considered, your offer letter must clearly state the following in addition to the requirements above:

  1. The name of the direct supervisor who will monitor the virtual assignment.
  2. How often the student's progress will be checked.
  3. The technology used to communicate between supervisor and student (Skype, email, etc.)

Internship/Co-op Job Description

  • You will need a copy of your official job description to copy and paste into the "Job Description" field on your work authorization request in Hire-A-Niner.
  • Your job description must provide a detailed overview of your daily activities and responsibilities as well as the skills you will be using and learning throughout your work experience.
  • View the position approval section to ensure your position meets all requirements.

Supervisor/Mentor Contact Information

  • Full Name
  • Title
  • Phone Number
  • Email Address
  • Work Address

Steps to request work authorization

  1. From Hire-A-Niner, click "Request Work Authorization for CPT via the University Career Center" under "Experiential Learning" on the right-hand side of the homepage
  2. Click "Add New Experience"
  3. Complete all required fields and click "Submit"

Launch Hire-A-Niner

A member of our team will be in touch within 5 business days as soon as your submission has been reviewed.

Who to contact with questions

Have an issue with your employer or position? Contact Jim Novak at 704-687-0795 or jnovak4@uncc.edu.

Have a question about your work authorization request? Contact Kim Corradi at 704-687-0795 or kcorradi@uncc.edu.

Have questions about CPT, OPT, or other immigration related questions? Contact the International Student and Scholar Office at 704-687-7781, intlsso@uncc.edu, or walk-in during advising hours on Monday/Wednesday/Friday from 10:00AM-12:00PM or Tuesday/Thursday from 2:00PM-4:00PM in CHHS 202.

​Processing time

From the time you submit your request for work authorization in Hire-A-Niner until your work authorization has been approved and your I-20 or DS-2019 is ready to pick-up will take 10 business days between the University Career Center and the International Student and Scholar Office.

There are NO EXCEPTIONS to this requirement, so please make sure you plan your employment start date ahead to allow for 10 business days processing time. If your offer letter does not allow for 10 business days processing time, your work authorization will be denied and you will have to request an updated offer letter from your prospective employer.

A member of our team will contact you when your work authorization has been approved.