Hiring International Students

The Kelley School of Business at Indiana University hosts students from a wide range of countries including China, Hong Kong, India, Indonesia, Japan, Korea, and Taiwan. International students made up 36 percent of the Kelley MBA Class of 2017.

Our international students are an impressive group who have achieved excellence and created value in their academic careers. They add merit to the Kelley School and are an integral part of our school's cultural diversity.

Hiring International Students: What You Need to Know

Our international students offer global perspectives, multicultural experiences, and unique skills to benefit your organization. At Graduate Career Services, we are eager to help recruiters and international students navigate the hiring process.

International students enrolled in the Kelley School of Business generally hold an F-1 visa or J-1 visa.

Students with an F-1 status are eligible for Curricular Practical Training work authorization.

Students should work with the IU Office of International Services prior to employment.

As of March 1, 2003, the functions of the Immigration and Naturalization Service (INS) were officially transferred to the Department of Homeland Security and U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).

  • F-1 Visa Holders are eligible for Curricular Practical Training, which is usually used for summer internships. After completion of studies, students are eligible for employment in a status called Optional Practical Training. This OPT status is valid for 12 months following graduation.
  • J-1 Visa Holders are authorized for 18 months of Academic Training employment. Students may use any month or months of this period for their summer internship, with the rest of the authorized employment period used during their full-time employment.

In many cases, an international student may continue to be employed after the conclusion of the Optional Practical Training or the Academic Training period provided that a change to another visa type is approved by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services. The most common of these is an H-1B visa. The Immigration Bridge Program® can help employers with the full-time international hiring process.

The Immigration Bridge Program® will help you navigate the complex H-1B visa process—so you can make excellent international hires and our international students can excel in great jobs.

Immigration Bridge is a proactive partnership between the Kelley School of Business, the IU Office of International Services, and a top immigration law firm, Fragomen, Del Rey, Bernsen & Loewy LLP, to assist international students and recruiters with immigration matters related to employer sponsorship. Students—not the recruiting companies—initiate the Immigration Bridge Program® application. While this program does not guarantee a visa sponsorship, visa, or employment, it does improve the situation for international students being recruited both on and off campus.

For more information on the Immigration Bridge Program®, please contact Nina Camfield, Associate Director of Corporate Relations for Graduate Career Services, at ecamfiel@indiana.edu, or view the Corporate Fact Sheet.

Download Corporate Fact Sheet

Questions from Recruiters

No. International students must have work authorization before they can begin actual employment, but not before they are offered employment. J-1 students must have a written job offer in order to apply for work authorization. Many F-1 students will be in the process of obtaining work authorizations while they are interviewing for employment. Students can give employers a reasonable estimate of when they expect to receive work authorization.

With a bit of planning, an employer can hire international students (F-1 visa holders) to continue to work for them in the H-1B visa category for a maximum of 6 years. The H-1B is a temporary working visa for workers in a "specialty occupation." The application procedure to the USCIS is straightforward. The job must meet two basic requirements: 1) the salary must meet the prevailing wage as defined by the Department of Labor, and 2) a bachelor's degree is a minimum normal requirement for the position.

No. Employers are not required to document that a citizen of another country did not take a job from a qualified candidate with permanent work authorization if that person is working under F-1, J-1, or H-1B visas. Employers must document that they did not turn down a qualified applicant for the position only when they wish to hire foreign citizens on a permanent basis and sponsor them for a permanent resident status.

Building Confidence at Kelley

Learn how Graduate Career Services enabled Shathabi Ravindra to tell her unique story to employers and succeed in her summer internship at EcoLab.