Student Forms

Curricular Practical Training

While all music students are expected and encouraged to perform, CPT is applicable to International Students only, Curricular Practical Training is defined as an alternate work/study, internship, cooperative education, or any other type of required practicum that is academically-required at TCU and offered by sponsoring employers. CPT originates from an academic need for work, and as a result, it must be required of all students in a program. It may either be required specifically in a particular class or it may be a programmatic expectation to fulfill degree requirements. Implied in this is a system of evaluation by the academic department and a beginning and termination date for a particular employment.

Undergraduate students must be in F-1 status for at least 9 months before employment can be initiated. All students may not work full-time (over 20 hours including all assistantships and CPT employment) except during summer and winter vacation. CPT is a departmental privilege, and thus may be revoked for academic reasons at any time.

Typically in music, Curricular Practical Training students are expected to seek professional opportunities as a part of their coursework. Participation and progress in these endeavors must be approved and overseen by the supervising faculty member. Examples might include activities in teaching, participation in professional orchestras, chamber music performance, performance in church services, weddings, funerals, accompanying, etc. International students MUST file appropriate paper work BEFORE accepting professional gigs and services.

CPT Application Instructions

  1. Download the CPT Recommendation Form from the ISS website.
  2. Submit Section 1 of the CPT form to your academic advisor (applied studio teacher) for completion;
  3. Have your academically-approved employer complete Section 2 of the CPT form;
  4. Sign and submit form to ISS at least 7 days prior to employment start date;
  5. Do not begin work until this process is completed and you have signed and picked up your new, work-authorized I-20 from ISS.

Faculty Advisor Information

  1. The Recommendation Form includes one section that the advisor/professor must sign. This signature is an agreement that you approve the employment and will monitor the progress of the student.
  2. Employment is based upon academic requirements and the Code of Federal Regulations strictly prohibits CPT thatís sole purpose is to provide employment for F and J visa holders. Where applicable US students must be participating in work as well.
  3. Requirements can not be informal:
    • Employment based upon class requirements must indicate this in an official class document, such as a syllabus;
    • Employment based upon degree fulfillment must include suitable language in the departmental section of the University catalogue.
  4. Because employment is curricular, evaluation of student performance is mandatory. An academic agenda must drive the employment (and thus, completion of a class or degree is de facto completion of the employment).

Further information may be obtained by calling Liz Branch at (817) 257-7292, or email at