CURRICULAR PRACTICAL TRAINING (CPT) for F-1 students
Curricular Practical Training (CPT) must be an “integral part of an established curriculum,” and is defined as “alternate work/study,
internship, cooperative education, or any other type of required internship or practicum offered by sponsoring employers through
cooperative agreements with the school.” (8 C.F.R. 214.2 (f) (10) (i)).
CPT can be authorized for:
• An internship/practicum course or other type of practical/field experience required to complete the degree program
• An internship/practicum course which is optional, but integral to student’s academic program
• An internship/cooperative education program offered through the FGCU Internships & Co-Operative Programs.
• Please review the FGCU Internships & Co-Operative Programs website
• Maintain good academic standing at the university
• Maintain F-1 status for at least one academic year (two consecutive full-time semesters) prior to start of CPT.
(EXCEPTION: Graduate students required to complete an internship for their degree program may begin CPT any time during
their program of study)
• Identify an opportunity which falls under the definition of Curricular Practical Training as explained above.
• Enroll full-time while pursuing CPT regardless of whether CPT is authorized full-time or part-time. Students who have
completed all required coursework (except thesis/dissertation hours) are not eligible for CPT (EXCEPTION: CPT for
thesis/dissertation students can be requested if it is necessary for data collection towards thesis/dissertation)
o Students should avoid pursuing full-time CPT unless (1) it is required for a degree program, or (2) it is during the
summer semester when full-time enrollment is optional.
o Enrollment below full course load to accommodate CPT employment is not permitted during fall and spring. Exception:
• Students who have completed all required coursework (except thesis/dissertation hours) are not eligible for CPT (EXCEPTION:
CPT for thesis/dissertation students can be requested if it is necessary for data collection towards thesis/dissertation)
CPT Authorization Requirements
• Employment offer is required prior to CPT approval
• A change in employer requires ISO review and approval
• Written authorization must be obtained from ISO prior to the employment start date. Authorization is granted one
semester at a time, for up to two semesters per degree level.
o CPT must be authorized prior to the employment start date. Working prior to receiving CPT authorization constitutes
o Although regulations do not specify the number of CPT authorizations a student may receive, ISSS will authorize no
more than two semesters of CPT per degree level. Students who wish to continue employment beyond two semesters
should consider other options such as Optional Practical Training (OPT) prior to degree completion.
o CPT may be authorized part-time (20 hours per week or less) or full-time (more than 20 hours per week). Part-time CPT
does not affect eligibility for Optional Practical Training (OPT). Full-time CPT reaching a total of 12 months will
cancel eligibility for OPT
International Services Office| Florida Gulf Coast
University 10501 FGCU Blvd South, Fort Myers, FL
33965-6565 TEL: (239) -590-7925| Fax: (239) 590-7977|
Florida Gulf Coast University