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Eirik Kolstaad

MA in Communication


I came to Hawaii in Fall 2008 as a graduate student. I decided to study communication in its broad aspect as it’s such a multifaceted field that studying the bigger picture of communication would give me much more fundamental knowledge and tools necessary for my career in media-related fields. In the new work force we need to be able to multitask.


Employment Opportunities

As an international student, working outside of your home country may pose unique opportunities and challenges. This section is dedicated to assisting you in navigating through the sometimes confusing world of employment where the rules, the culture, and the expectations in the work environment can be quite different from what you are accustomed.

Your visa status determines if you can work in the U.S. and in what types of situations. International students generally hold either an F-1 or J-1 visa.  For students with other visa types, contact International Student Services for more details about the specifics of your employment authorization.

Employment Type F-1 Student J-1 Student
On- Campus Yes Yes
Off- Campus


Academic Training


On-Campus Employment

Eligible Students: Degree-Seeking Students
Students in F-1 status are allowed to work on-campus without seeking approval from a DSO, as long as they are registered full-time for the current semester (except over summer and winter breaks). The student must be in good academic standing (minimum 2.0 GPA for undergrads, 3.0 GPA for graduates) in order to be eligible for employment on-campus.

Students are allowed to work up to 20 hours per week during the fall and spring semesters, and employment can be full-time over summer and winter breaks. Please note that anything over 20 hours is considered full-time. Full-time on-campus employment is dependent upon availability at Hawai‛i Pacific University.

Students can go to the Career Services Center to find the current listings of on-campus positions available, access the on-line job bulletin or go to the individual departments. It is recommended that students have a résumé and be prepared to complete a Hawai‘i Pacific University application form. For assistance with writing résumés, students can make an appointment to see a Career Counselor at the Career Services Center.

Students who are changing programs or institutions may work on-campus during the interim period between programs/schools if they were eligible for employment prior to the change and have been issued an I-20 for the new program/school.

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Off-Campus Employment

Eligible students: Degree-Seeking Students
Students are ONLY allowed to work off-campus if they have been authorized by the International Student Services. There are different requirements that the student must meet before being eligible for the different types of work authorization. Students who work more than the allowable number of hours or without proper authorization face potential deportation. Students wishing to seek work authorization will need to clear any holds (financial, medical, library) on their accounts before their appointment with an International Student Advisor. Holds on their account will result in a delay until the hold is cleared


Curricular Practical Training is employment authorization granted to currently enrolled F-1 students by a DSO, allowing students to work off-campus in positions which give them practical training in their major field of study. More about CPT...

Economic Hardship

This type of employment authorization is only available to students who demonstrate and prove that they have encountered UNFORESEEN circumstances, making employment necessary to avoid severe economic hardship. Find out if you are eligible...


Optional Practical Training (OPT) is defined by the United States Citizenship & Immigration Service (USCIS) to be employment which is directly related to an academic degree that is obtained. Students who have maintained their F-1 status for one full academic year, are in good academic standing, and have studied full-time, are eligible to apply for 12 months of OPT. However, F-1 students who have 12 months or more of full-time curricular practical training (CPT) in the current degree program are not eligible for OPT for the current degree program. More about OPT...

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OPT extension

This is a 17 month extension of OPT for F-1 students with a STEM degree. Find out here if you are eligible...

Academic Training

Your J-1 Program Sponsor and Responsible Officer

To receive academic training authorization, you must apply to your J-1 Responsible or Alternate Responsible Officer (RO/ARO), who represents your J-1 sponsor and issues your Form DS-2019. The RO/ARO must evaluate the proposed employment to determine whether it can be authorized. If HPU is your J-1 sponsor, your RO/ARO is one of the international student advisors at the International Center. If your program is sponsored by another institution, the International Center can help direct you to the RO/ARO at your institution. Learn more about academic training...

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