Note: If you have only just arrived in the U.S. to begin your academic program, please wait at least two weeks from the time of your entry to the U.S. and completion of F-1/J-1 registration, before applying for a Social Security card. Typically it takes the Social Security Administration up to two weeks to access your U.S entry records. Applying earlier or prior to completion of F-1/J-1 registration will not speed up the process, but may result in a notification from Social Security that your records could not be verified.
Steps to Apply for the Social Security Number
- International students will need to first obtain an employment letter from their on-campus employer (Sample Student Employment Letter PDF) .
- Once you receive the employment letter from your on-campus employer, upload it to the Social Security Letter Request in your OISSS Gateway portal.
- OISSS will send you the support letter by email which you can print out and bring to the Social Security Administration. You will also need to bring your valid passport, I-94 printout, most recent 1-20/DS-2019 and the letter from your department/supervisor confirming on-campus employment.
The SSA has resumed walk-in services for SSN applications. Address and hours of operation can be viewed here.