Applying for a Social Security Number and Card

Information for International Employees

Note: the information contained in this brochure pertains only to those individuals who will be employed by the University. If you are offered employment with an SDSU auxiliary (e.g. the SDSU Research Foundation, Associated Students, or Aztec Shops,), you must follow the procedures of that auxiliary’s Human Resources office. The information in this brochure is not universal to all Human Resources offices on campus

There are a series of steps that you must follow in order to obtain a social security number . Use the check list provided in this brochure to ensure that all paperwork is completed and properly submitted in a timely manner. This process is time sensitive. If the following steps are not completed , you may be asked to stop working temporarily or even resign their position.

  • Obtain the International Student Center (ISC) “On -Campus Work Verification Form” from the ISC. (Intended for student employees only)
  • Apply for an on -campus job and receive a job offer from employer. (Intended for student employees only)
  • Inform your employer that you need to apply for a Social Security number before beginning work and that you will need an offer letter in order to get started with the process.
  • The offer letter must include the following: employee name, expected dates of employment, pay rate, time base, classification, supervisor’s name and work phone number, and department. This letter must be on department letterhead. A statement of Terms and Conditions or a Student Employment Authorization Form will not substitute. 
  • The Center for Human Resources will e -mail you with pre -employment requirements. When you come in to begin the pre -employment process, be sure to bring all visa documentation, including your I -94 Arrival/Departure Record . The I -94 can be accessed online at
  • Once HR has verified your identity and employment eligibility, you will be authorized to begin work. However, your paperwork will be placed on hold until you bring in your social security card.
  • Present your offer letter to The Center for Human Resources Payroll Office in the Extended Studies Center, room 406 .
  • The Payroll Office will generate an e mployer’s letter for you . Approximate waiting time is 20 minutes.
  • Take the employer’s letter, your offer letter and visa documentation to the ISC to complete the “Social Security Verification Form”. (Intended for student employees only)
  • Within three days the ISC will generate a letter for you to take to the Social Security Administration office. (Intended for student employees only)
  • Bring your offer letter, employer’s letter, ISC letter and visa documents to the nearest Social Security Card Center ( to apply for your social security number.
  • Return to The Center for Human Resources with your new social security card (not receipt) to finalize the pre -employment. You will be provided information about making a tax appointment with payroll. A payroll technician will contact you within a few days to schedule your appointment.
  • Bring all visa documentation and your completed Foreign National Information Form which was provided to you when you completed the pre -employment process .
  • Once you r tax appointment is finished, you have completed all steps of the proces