Curricular Practical Training (CPT)


The purpose of Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is to gain experience directly related to your major. CPT work authorization is required for all paid or non-paid, part or full-time employment/internships. CPT requires a recommendation from your academic advisor and enrollment in an appropriate course in your major. The internship requires you to work off-campus instead of attending weekly class meetings on-campus.


  • Full-time enrollment in F-1 visa status for a minimum of one academic year at Cal Poly or another college/university
  • Good academic standing: 2.0 or higher GPA for undergraduates / 3.0 or higher for graduate students
  • Making normal progress toward degree completion. CPT should not delay your end date on your I-20



CPT must be authorized by the International Center before you can legally begin employment or continue with another quarter of CPT employment. You are only authorized to work for the company named on your I-20 and only during the dates specified. Employment dates should be as close as possible to the quarter or summer session dates. CPT can be processed very quickly.

Note: 12 months or more of full-time CPT authorization during your degree program will make you ineligible for any of the 12 months of Optional Practical Training (OPT) for that degree. Part-time CPT does not impact eligibility for OPT. CPT is only allowed prior to graduation.