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J-1 Student Off Campus Employment for Urgent Financial Need

J-1 students may be authorized to work off-campus in this if you have serious and urgent financial need that you did not foresee when you became a J-1 student, or when you enrolled at Vanderbilt.


To be eligible, you must be:

  1. In valid J-1 status in the student sub-category
  2. Registered and studying full-time except during school breaks or a vacation period
  3. In good academic standing at Vanderbilt
  4. Approved in SEVIS for the specific employment in advance by ISSS
  5. Able to demonstrate serious, urgent, and unforeseen financial need

Application Process

Complete the J Student Employment Application.

  • Attach a letter explaining your situation and specifically indicating how the financial need is urgent and was unforeseen.
  • Completed applications may be submitted to an International Student Adviser during walk-in hours or a scheduled appointment to allow opportunity to discuss your situation.
  • Students are encouraged to submit the form 2 weeks in advance of your employment start date.

Students with DS-2019’s issued by a sponsor other than Vanderbilt, such as IIE, should contact their J-1 Responsible Officer for assistance.


On-campus employment is limited to no more than 20 hours per week while school is in session. Full-time employment (working more than 20 hours a week) is acceptable only during official school breaks such as Winter break, Spring break and Summer.

Authorization is valid for up to 12 months at a time.  Students who wish to renew their authorization should submit the application with enough time to avoid gaps in employment.