Once you come to US, we always find ways to support ourselves. We try not to ask parents for money either it is for fees or expenses. Typically students do two kinds of Jobs. One is legal and other is illegal on F1 visa. Let me explain you the differences.
On Campus Job:
As the name says, you work “On Campus ” part time. There is a cap of 20 hrs per week if you are a full time international student and working beyond 20 hrs is against the rule. You can only work more than 20 hrs in Summer when you are not taking any classes. You can work up to 40 hrs in summers.
So, what kind of On campus jobs do you get to do ?
Jobs like working in library shelving books, working in Computer Labs taking care of printers, terminals, etc. Working in cafeterias, receptionist in an office, Admin kind of stuff in several offices like international students office or academic affairs office. There are tons of jobs in a typical campus and you should be able to get one. Working on Campus is legal and allowed by immigration law. For some of these jobs you do get tuition waivers and it only depends on school and type of job. I will talk about Teaching assistantships and Research assistantships in other post, they are on campus employment with some additional benefits.
How much do you make in On-Campus Job :
You can get paid around 7 dollars. It depends on the state minimum and varies by state. So, you get to make on an average ( if you work 20 hrs ) per month 20 x 4 x 7 = $560
Off Campus Jobs :
Unlike above, you do not work on campus. You work outside of campus. Anything that is not affiliated with University is called Off campus Job. It is ILLEGAL to work off campus if you are on F1 Visa. But, many students do off campus job because they do not have a choice to support themselves.
What are the kinds of Off-campus jobs ?
Typically, working in a Gas station as cashier and doing other work ( this is what people talk about students back in India, saying he was cleaning floor and stuff filling petrol ) , working in a Motel as front desk person to handle customers ( just like lodge in India working at front desk ), working in different stores in Malls, Working at Desi restaurants ( Food is free, may people do this ) or anything like Mc Donald or Subways which are owned by Desis, Working in Desi stores, etc…
How much do you make Off Campus :
You can get paid anywhere from 5 to 10 dollars. It depends on the type of job, it is up to your boss to decide. But, most of the times Desi owners are good and they pay around 6 to 7 dollars at least. Some good students get carried away by the money they see in off campus and ruin their education. So, it has to be watched out carefully.
Working Off Campus is ILLEGAL and I DO NOT Recommend anyone to do that ! I have just posted this for your information based on my knowledge. Consequences of working off campus can be very bad., if you are found or caught working illegal, you can be potentially deported too. Be careful
Any questions, post a comment ! I will reply.