Social Security Number

The Social Security Number (SSN) will be issued by the Social Security Administration (SSA). Students who wish to work on campus will need a Social Security Number.  

  • F-1 students are not eligible for an SSN without an employment offer. Students are required to submit a job offer letter when applying for an SSN letter from ISS. The student or department (please check your department HR procedures) must submit a request through and attach a valid job offer letter for on-campus employment. Please see the “Documents to Submit for SSN Application” section below for more details on what needs to be included in the job offer letter. An ISS advisor will review the content of the letter, and endorse the job offer letter if it meets the Social Security Administration’s standards. An email will be sent to the F-1 students when their letter is ready for pick-up from the ISS office.
  • J-1 students are eligible to apply for an SSN with or without an employment offer. If you will need the Social Security Number to work on campus, J-1 students will need proper authorization to work on campus from ISS. In order to request for a social security letter and proper work authorization from ISS, submit a request through and attach a valid job offer letter for on-campus employment, if applicable. ISS will provide you with a letter endorsed by ISS for the Social Security Administration and the proper work authorization letter.
  • Current sponsored students are strongly advised to contact your sponsor to ensure that your work does not violate the conditions of your sponsorship. Failure to obtain the consent of your sponsor about your employment may impact your funding. Texas A&M University will notify your sponsor that you have requested and received authorization to work.
After you have received the proper work authorization document from ISS, you will need to complete an SSN application form and take all of the documents listed below to your local Social Security Administration (SSA) office:
  • SSN Application completed using blue or black ink: The SSN Application Form and Instructions are available online.
  • Original I-20 (F-1) or DS-2019 (J-1) and a photocopy,
  • Original I-94 card and a photocopy,
  • Original passport and a photocopy of the picture page, the page showing the expiration date, and your U.S. visa stamp,
  • Employment offer letter issued by the hiring department, on the hiring department’s letterhead AND endorsed by an ISS Advisor. To comply with the Social Security Office rules, the following must be included in the job offer letter on the hiring department’s letterhead:
    • Student name (as it is listed on the student’s passport)
    • Department
    • Position/Title
    • Start Date ((No more than 30 days in the future at the time of application)
    • Number of Hours per week
    • Rate of pay
    • Contact information for employer and supervisor
    • Employment identification number (EIN) (if possible) (This number can be requested from the payroll office of the hiring department.)
Departments may request a sample Social Security Letter form from the office of ISS by sending an email to  
In order to be issued a social security card, your data must appear in a database the SSA office uses to verify your legal non-immigrant status.
  • It generally takes 12-15 days after the Port of Entry date stamped on your I-20 or DS-2019 for the Port of Entry officials to enter your information in the database. Because of this, the SSA Office encourages you not to submit your SSN application until you have been in the U.S. at least 12-15 days.
  • If you choose to submit your application early and your data is not yet in the database, your application will then be forwarded to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) for further review which usually adds an additional 2-6 weeks to the normal processing of your social security application.
  • If you apply for the SSN 12-15 days after arriving in the U.S., it will take approximately 6 weeks for the social security card to arrive at the mailing address on the SSN application form. Going to the SSA Office to check on the status of the application will not help, since once it is submitted, the process is not in the hands of local officials. Therefore, please DO NOT inquire about the status of an application before the end of 6 weeks.
The address you use on your SSN application is very important. An incomplete or wrong address, or one sent to a friend's house will prevent the U.S. Postal Service from delivering your social security card and it will send it back to the SSA.
DO NOT use the term "c/o" as part of the address. ISS advises students to apply for an SSN only after they get a permanent address.
The office hours: 
  • Monday, Tuesday, Thursday and Friday: 9:00am – 4:00pm
  • Wednesday: 9:00am – 12:00pm
  • Saturday and Sunday: CLOSED
Contact Information:
Toll Free: 1 (866) 568-9428
TTY: 1 (800) 325-0778
Location: 2120 West Briargate Drive,Bryan,TX 77802