A Social Security Number (SSN) is a 9-digit number issued to U.S. citizens, permanent residents and certain non-residents by the Social Security Administration (SSA). Its primary purpose is to track individuals for taxation purposes. It is not intended to be used for identification purposes and cannot be used as work authorization.
Per current legislation SSNs can only be issued to someone who:
Currently SSNs are only issued to non-residents who have an employment offer and are eligible for work authorization. Dependents in F-2 status are not eligible for an SSN since they are not permitted to work.
Please note that students do not need an SSN to register for classes at MIIS, get a driver’s license in California, open a bank account, obtain a cell phone, or rent a place to live.
The SSA provides more information on SSNs for international students.
Students and scholars who are not eligible for an SSN may be eligible for a Tax Identification Number (ITIN) to use for filing taxes during tax season reporting.
There are specific guidelines and procedures that international students must follow when applying for a Social Security Number from the Social Security Administration. Read below for more information on how the application process works.
For on-campus (work-study) positions:
For Curricular Practical Training (CPT)
For Optional Practical Training (OPT)
To apply for your SSN, you will need the following documents:
For on-campus and CPT employment, a student can apply for a SSN up to 30 days before your work start date. For OPT, a student must have their EAD card AND it must be the first day of your work authorization period.
To minimize any delays please bring originals of all documents. The SSA does not accept any photo copies of documents. ;A Social Security Number and card will be issued within two weeks of receiving certification from the Department of Homeland Security.
The closest Social Security Administration office to the Institute campus is located at:
928 E. Blanco Rd., Suite 155
Salinas, CA 93901
1-800-772-1213 or 1-877-600-2857