Off-Campus Research Assistantship

An off-campus research assistantship is defined as physically off-campus of NC State University and paid through the NC State University Payroll office.

Students at the graduate level can be permitted to work at an off-campus location if the employer is educationally affiliated with NC State. This educational affiliation must be associated with the university’s established curriculum or be related to contractually funded research projects at the graduate level – in any case, the employment must be an integral part of the student’s degree program and payments must come through NC State payroll.

An off-campus assistantship is different from off-campus employment.

Off-campus employment – and services provided to companies where payment comes from an off-campus source – must be authorized in advance in the form of OPT or CPT (for F-1) and Academic Training (for J-1).

Off-campus Assistantship for F-1 students

Students interested in this type of assistantship should complete and submit the Off-Campus Research Assistantship Request Form prior to starting the employment. This form requests approval from your Advisor and your Director of Graduate Program. The form can be submitted via e-mail to ois@ncsu.edu or submitted in person at the OIS front desk. The student will receive a new I-20 from OIS within 10 business days of receipt of the form.


Please note that F-1 and J-1 students are considered to be working 20 hours a week on campus if they hold a half-time teaching/research assistantship. Additional appointments, supplemental pay, or additional pay for hours worked beyond the 20 hour per week maximum will violate a student’s immigration status. However, students can work more than 20 hours per week during official semester breaks and during the summer semester as long as they are pre-registered for the fall semester.


 Once hired, international students must make an appointment with International Employment and Taxation to complete one or two additional tax withholding forms. This is necessary so that the University correctly withholds the appropriate amount of taxes for the student and they are not charged more than required. In order to accept a salary or wage payment from a U.S.-based source, it is necessary to obtain a Social Security Number

Off-campus Assistantship for J-1 students

J-1 students need specific written employment authorization from their J-1 program sponsor. Students whose program sponsor is OIS can easily request employment authorization in one year increments by submitting the J-1 Student Employment Authorization Request Form. Employment may not result in a delay of program completion (with a need to request a program extension), loss of good academic standing, loss of full-time enrollment, etc.


Please note that F-1 and J-1 students are considered to be working 20 hours a week on campus if they hold a half-time teaching/research assistantship. Additional appointments, supplemental pay, or additional pay for hours worked beyond the 20 hour per week maximum will violate a student’s immigration status. However, students can work more than 20 hours per week during official semester breaks and during the summer semester as long as they are pre-registered for the fall semester.


Once hired, international students must make an appointment with International Employment and Taxation to complete one or two additional tax withholding forms. This is necessary so that the University correctly withholds the appropriate amount of taxes for the student and they are not charged more than required. In order to accept a salary or wage payment from U.S.-based source, it is necessary to obtain a Social Security Number