Office of Global Engagement
International Students and Scholars

CPT Application Preparation

Attend CPT Workshop and Contact OISSS With Any Questions

CPT workshops are offered each semester. If you have any follow up questions after attending the workshop, please schedule an appointment with an OISSS advisor.

Secure Employment Offer

The letter should be on employer letterhead and include the following: 

  • specific start and end dates of employment
  • location of employment
  • detailed description of job duties
  • state the number of work hours per week
  • clarify that the offer is not for a permanent position
  • employer signature

Obtain Academic Approval for Employment

Concentrators in Applied Math, Computer Science, Economics and Engineering can opt into the Professional Track. After declaring and being approved for “Professional Track” within your concentration in ASK, you will need to obtain approval for this internship to count toward the track requirement.

Please note that professional track internships must be full-time and at least one month in length. Students can use a minimum of two and a maximum of six months of CPT for professional track internships.

Watch the Undergraduate CPT 101 Video

Plan an independent study course related to your internship and concentration, and obtain faculty and Dean of the College (DOC) approval by following the steps below:

1. Initial CPT Advising: Review the information and FAQs on the "Non-Professional Track CPT Dashboard" and then schedule an advising meeting with the International Student Academic Advisor, Jason Serrano ( to discuss and review your plans for CPT Independent Study. Bring a copy of your employment offer letter and your job description (either on company letterhead or a screenshot of the online job posting).

2. Identify Faculty Sponsor: Identify a faculty member to approve and supervise an independent study course in your concentration. A Faculty Sponsor must hold a teaching appointment at Brown and have applicable knowledge of the proposed topic. The Faculty Sponsor assesses the proposal, advises the independent study, meets regularly with the student, and is responsible for evaluating each student's work.

3. Develop an Independent Study Proposal: In cooperation with Faculty Sponsor, define the topic and primary reading material of your independent study course, and how the course relates to your proposed internship. The proposal must include: 

  • Full description of your internship
  • Full description of the CPT independent study course including learning goals, connection to the internship and concentration
  • Name of faculty sponsoring the independent study and the course number
  • How often student and faculty sponsor will meet/communicate
  • Layout of the semester schedule (weekly or biweekly) including readings and assignments to be completed. The proposal can be a partial draft but it should demonstrate careful deliberation has been given to the learning goals, connection to internship and concentration.

4. Submit Independent Study Proposal to Jason for Feedback: Put the following three documents in a shared folder in Google drive and share the folder with Jason (

  • Employment offer letter in PDF
  • Detailed job description in PDF
  • Independent study proposal (discussed with and reviewed by your faculty sponsor). Please include this document as a Google Doc (not a PDF) and share it with Jason. Feedback will be provided in 2-3 business days after you share all three documents.

5. Faculty Sponsor Approval: Request that your Faculty Sponsor submit approval of your independent study proposal to Dean Pan and OISSS:

6. Concentration Advisor Approval: The CPT independent study course must be deemed integral to your concentration study by your concentration advisor. Provide your concentration advisor with a copy of your employment offer letter and independent study proposal for review. Then request that your concentration advisor submits approval to Dean Pan and OISSS:

7. Final Approval from Dean Chia-Ying Pan: Submit your documents to Dean Pan by completing this form: Dean Pan will offer her feedback for edits for grant final approval in 2-3 business days. Email Dean Pan at if you have any questions. 

Watch the Undergraduate CPT 101 Video

Discuss the employment offer with your faculty or thesis advisor as they will need to confirm that your employment is an integral part of your program curriculum.

For employment that is not a requirement of your academic program or track, your faculty advisor will need to provide the following on their approval form:

  • description of the training (1-2 paragraphs)
  • employer’s name and address; the specific dates of the recommended training; and whether the employment is full-time (over 20 hours) or part-time (up to 20 hours). 
  • verification that the work is an integral part of your program of study, and
    • that you have enrolled in (specify course title and course number) and will receive academic credits for the experience
    • OR that the employment is required as part of your academic program for all students

CPT Application Instructions

Complete OISSS CPT Request

Log in to your OISSS Gateway portal and complete the Curricular Practical Training (CPT) request. You will need to upload your employment offer letter.

OISSS Review & Authorization 

If all requirements are met, OISSS will issue a new I-20 with CPT authorization. Please allow 5-10 business days for processing.

After CPT Approval

Professional Track Undergraduate Students:
At the conclusion of your internship, write a reflective essay (see your department website for details). Upload your reflective essay in your OISSS Gateway portal.

All Other Students:
Register for and successfully complete the independent study course (undergraduate students) or the specific course indicated on your CPT request (graduate students). Failure to complete the designated course will cause you to be ineligible for future CPT or OPT authorization.