Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
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Curricular Practical Training (CPT)


F-1 students who want to, or who are required to participate in an off-campus placement MUST receive authorization on the form I-20. This is true for any off-campus opportunity, whether it is required for your degree or not, and may be considered Fieldwork, Practicum, Student Teaching or an Internship, etc. CPT authorization must be entered into your F-1 immigration record BEFORE you begin any off-campus opportunity.  CPT can be paid or unpaid.

Please see International Student Programs to update your immigration record with this authorization, and obtain the updated form I-20 with the CPT authorization listed on it BEFORE you begin the placement. This procedure follows visa regulations set by the US Federal Government.  If you do not get the required authorization from International Student Programs, the college will be required to terminate your F1 status in order to comply with visa regulations.


  • You must be a degree candidate who has been in lawful status as a full-time student for at least one academic year.

  • You must get approval from your academic department to participate in the off-campus opportunity.

  • You must already have an offer for an off campus experience, before applying for CPT.

  • If the off-campus opportunity is optional (meaning it is not required but recommended for your degree), you must register for the Fieldwork, Practicum, Student Teaching or Internship course and you must earn credit for the course during the time that you participate in the off-campus placement.

**CPT applications will not be accepted after REGISTRATION ends each semester. See the Academic Calendar**

Required Materials


  • ​Electronic Recommendation from your academic advisor. 

  • ​Unofficial transcripts (which can be accessed through
      ​current semester transcript showing correct CPT course registration

  • Offer letter-  Letter MUST include the following information:

    • Name of Organization.

    • ​Location where opportunity will take place (organization’s address)

    • How many hours you will work per week, 

    • ​​Start date and end date (see table below),  (Please take the 2-3 business day CPT processing time into consideration when choosing your CPT start date.)

    • Is the experience paid or unpaid, and 

    • ​A description of your duties, which clearly defines how this placement relates to your major/field of study.  Here is a SAMPLE CPT Offer Letter.   

CPT Application Deadlines 


CPT Application Deadline

Earliest CPT Start Date
Day after  previous semester end date

Latest CPT End Date
Last day of the semester

Fall, Spring & Winter Session

The day semester registration ends

Day after the previous semester end date

Last day of the semester

Summer *

The day summer session registration ends

Day after spring semester end date

Final summer session end date.


* For students completing, final coursework or program of study, your CPT end date must be the session you are registered for. (Refer to Academic Calendar for exact summer session end dates.)  

  • Please refer to the Academic Calendar for exact semester start/end dates, and registration end date, dates may change. 


  1. Receive written offer of employment/offer letter.  (SAMPLE CPT Offer Letter

  2. ​Register for correct course associated with your CPT application.

  3. Make sure your SUNY New Paltz tuition has been processed

  4. Ensure that your address is current in and that no holds exist on your record

  5. Log in to your ISS-Profile Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

  6. Review & Complete each section of the CPT I-20 request:
    - Upload offer letter & unofficial transcript, 
    - CPT Learning Content, CPT  Assessments, CPT Employment Information & Social Security Number Letter Request Form, and 
    - Request Electronic Recommendation from your academic Advisor 

  7. Submit Request for CPT.  (Please allow 2-3 business days for processing and review.)

  8. ​​You will receive an email from the International Student Services office once your CPT I-20 is ready for pick up.  

Deadline: CPT applications will not be accepted after REGISTRATION ends each semester. See the Academic Calendar

Special Considerations

  • You must receive the authorized CPT I-20 BEFORE you begin your placement.  ​

  • CPT start date must be a date into the future. Choose a start date that allows time for processing CPT request. We cannot back date your CPT start date, that means we cannot authorize employment for a date that has already passed. 

  • End date cannot go beyond the last day of the semester or summer term.

  • ​​You are required to register for a full-time course load each semester, with the exception in your final semester only.
    Full time CPT is considered employment that is more than 20 hours/week)
    Part time CPT is considered employment that is 20 hours/week or less)

  • Students who engage in full-time CPT for twelve months or more will not be eligible for OPT.

  • ​Exceptions to dates/deadlines may apply to Graduate Programs that require off-campus placements that are an integral part of the established curriculum and mandatory for degree completion.

  • Contact International Student Programs if you have questions about the requirements for CPT and attend our CPT workshops.

Additional Resources: 

Career Resource Center:  The Career Resource Center offers unique services, programs, and resources, to both current students and alumni of all majors, to assist with their career development. The we offer guidance on:   Resume and Cover Letters  •  Internship Search  •  Job Search, and much more.