Social Security Number Information
Individuals who have secured paid on-campus employment, PhD fellowships, or paid off-campus employment with OPT or CPT may be eligible for a Social Security Number (SSN).
All U.S. employers require employees to have an SSN. This unique nine digit identification number is issued by the U.S. government and is necessary for getting paid and paying taxes.
Once you obtain your SSN, you must guard it carefully. The SSN is a permanent ID number. Only share your SSN with individuals or organizations whom you believe are trustworthy and have a valid reason for needing your SSN.
We recommend that International Students apply for a SSN 12 days after their initial or most recent entry to the United States in their current status.
If you are seeking a letter of denial for the application of a Massachusetts Learner's Permit/Driver's License/State ID, please go to a Social Security Administration office with your immigration documents and request a denial letter. This can be used in lieu of a SSN for the process of applying for a Learner's Permit or Driver's License.
Obtaining an SSN
To apply for a SSN, please take the following documents:
For On-Campus Employment
International Student On-Campus Employment Form (for students with on-campus jobs, except Sodexo) OR
Fellowship award letter (PhD students only) OR
Job offer letter (for students, scholars, researchers) OR
J-1 sponsored student letter issued by visa sponsor
For Off-Campus Employment
CPT - CPT authorized I-20 (within 30 days of your start date) AND a Job/Internship offer letter (must be paid work)
OPT - EAD card AND OPT authorized I-20
For All Applicants
Valid passport and visa AND
Most recent I-20 (for F-1 visa holders) OR DS-2019 (for J-1/J-2 visa holders) AND
Print out of most recent electronic Form I-94
Waltham Social Security Office
135 Beaver St. Suite 120
Waltham, MA 02452
If your application is accepted, you will receive a receipt confirming that you have applied for a SSN and your SSN card will arrive in the mail within 2 weeks.