International Students in F-1 or J-1 status are eligible for a Social Security number (SSN) if certain conditions are met (see below). An SSN is required before students can begin any on-campus employment.
The Office of Global Engagement can provide a verification letter of employment eligibility for students who need to apply for an SSN. To request your letter, visit our
student letter request page. Letter requests throughout the academic year will be processed in the order they are received. Letters are usually available within 3 to 5 business days after request.
To be eligible for a Social Security number you must meet the following requirements:
- Be in J-1 or F-1 status
- Have form DS-2019 (for J-1) or from I-20 (for F-1)
- Have your most recent I-94 (which you can download on the I-94 website)
- Be in ACTIVE status in SEVIS
- Have an offer letter of employment
For more specific information on eligibility and how to apply, please refer to the Social Security Fact Sheet. Please also see
the information about Social Security numbers on the Study in the States website as well.
Frequently Asked Questions
To obtain a letter of ineligibility, you will need to complete a social security application
. In addition to completing the form questions, you should write "need letter of ineligibility" at the top of the form.
Once complete, please mail the application to:
Social Security Administration
1940 Sweeney St
Mount Pleasant, MI 48858
Your letter will then be mailed to the mailing address you listed on the form.