I got my MS in mathematics 6 months earlier and now enrolled in a PhD program. But thinking to quit/take a break for at least a year. So, do you think I can apply for a full time job in USA being an international student? Also, will I be eligible to get the work authorization in USA? Thanks for your time good people.

  • This is not an Academic problem - you need to check about student permits, work permits, visas etc with the relevant authorities.
    – Solar Mike
    Jun 8, 2019 at 5:53
  • 2
    Ask your advisor and the international student office at your university about CPT (curricular practical training) and/or OPT (optional practical training). Both require you to be a full-time student for a full year before you are eligible; CPT requires you to have a job offer (like an internship) in hand. If you drop out now, the answer is almost certainly no.
    – JeffE
    Jun 8, 2019 at 12:00

1 Answer 1


Assuming that you're on a F-1 visa and you are already taking full time classes for your PhD, you cannot stop school and work full time while maintaining your F1 visa.

You have then 2 options:

1) Follow the F-1 regulations for employment while attending school. That is, work on campus, CPT or Pre-OPT. All options are very restrictive in terms of options and amount of work you can do.

2) Leave school and have an employer sponsor a work visa (e.g. H1-B, EB-2, etc.). This will allow you to work full time, however, given the amount of work necessary to get these petitions approved, I find unlikely that someone would hire you for only a year. In addition, if you do get one of these visas, you would want to pursuit your green card first before trying to be a full time student again.

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