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Social Security Number

Social Security Number

A Social Security Number or “SSN” is a form of identification that is typically used by the U.S. government to connect with companies for tax purposes.

After you have been in the U.S. for 10 days and you have been offered a work opportunity. University policy requires that all students working on campus must apply for and receive a social security number. You must provide HR with your social security number in order to be registered in the University payroll system and receive wages.

No. But to learn more about getting a bank account in the U.S., click here.

No. But to learn more about getting a driver’s license in the US, click here.

Generally, no. At Santa Clara University, no. Most businesses and companies will additionally not allow you to start until you have an SSN.

Please visit for more information.


  1. Find a job
    1. Option 1: For all students, find a job on campus. Remember, University policy allows students to work a maximum of 19 hours per week while classes are in session. Visa regulations and University policy allow international students to work on campus full-time during vacations or during the summer. Student positions are listed here .
    2. Option 2: In addition to working on-campus, students who have been enrolled full-time for a minimum of three consecutive quarters or two semesters, you may request academic employment concurrent with your studies, “Curricular Practical Training (CPT)." 
  2. Request that your potential employer give you a job offer letter or “letter of intent to hire” and bring this to ISS.  The letter should include:
    1. Position title
    2. Department or office
    3. Name of employer
    4. Position description or description of some of your responsibilities
  3. ISS will create a “Request Letter” requesting for the US government to create your SSN. It can take up to a week for ISS to create this letter.
  4. When the letter is ready, you will be contacted by email to come in to pick it up.
  5. Go to the Social Security website and fill out a form ONLINE and print the form.
  6. It can take one to six weeks to get your social security card with your social security number on it. After you receive it, take the social security card to Human Resources so that they may record your number in keeping with legal requirements for employers. You may begin work and earn wages prior to receiving the card or number but must provide proof to HR of having applied for your SS card within one month of starting work.

Disclaimer: U.S. immigration regulations are complex and change frequently. While we strive to maintain a website that is both current and helpful, Santa Clara University is not responsible for students maintaining lawful immigration status; this is the responsibility of the student.  Links provided do not constitute endorsement by Santa Clara University.