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Social Security

A Social Security Card is required for everyone who works in the United States. Each card contains a unique 9-digit number known as a Social Security Number (SSN). Social Security numbers are primarily used to report wages to the government and to determine eligibility for Social Security benefits.

A SSN can be issued to an international student who has a valid job offer and/or is eligible for legal employment. Students looking to get a SSN will require a letter from the Office of Global Education (OGE) that confirms that the student has legal immigration status. As a note, the Social Security Administration suggests that new students wait at least 10 days after entry into the U.S. before applying for a SSN.

To apply for a SSN an international student will need to bring the following documents to the local Social Security office:

  • A completed application
  • I-20 or DS-2019
  • I-94
  • Letter from the OGE office
  • An employment offer letter from your on-campus employer
  • Passport

All documents must be either originals or copies certified by the issuing agency. Photocopies or notarized copies of documents will not be accepted.

The nearest Social Security office is located at: