I am a PhD student on F1 visa (applies work authorization restrictions). I am paid as RA in our department (20 hours/week). I have an internship offer for summer which extends through first few weeks of fall semester. Now my question is whether it is allowed to switch from (paid) full-time internship to RAship, given that I will be an intern (off-campus) for first few weeks of fall and back to school for the rest of the semester? Or do you suggest I change my full-time internship to part-time for fall semester?

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    This is a question for the International student office of your university, or other authority such as immigration service. We are not able to give you any authoritive answer.
    – Nobody
    May 28, 2015 at 3:58
  • @scaaahu It's much more efficient to share the information on Internet than having each F1 asking individually to the ISO… May 28, 2015 at 4:56
  • It's certainly more efficient to share information here, but I worry that it's risky. If the ISO is doing its job properly, then their answers will be reliable and will take into account any subtleties or technicalities regarding a particular student's situation. I'm not convinced that most voters on this site can predict what sort of technicalities might arise with work authorization, so we're not in a position to rate or filter this information. (At least I'm not, and I'd be surprised if many people here were.)
    – Anonymous Mathematician
    May 28, 2015 at 6:02
  • I do not have enough reputations to add comment, so I'm adding this answer. Thank you all for your help. I found out that there are a couple of restrictions to switching between these two. I will edit my answer as soon as I make sure about the limitations from the payment perspective.
    – user6623
    May 29, 2015 at 14:31

1 Answer 1


To take a full-time internship as a F1 student in the USA, you need to be either on OPT or CPT. You can switch anytime to RAship as long as your school and advisor are fine with it.

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