Social Security Card wih a brass key on top of it

A Social Security Number (SSN) is a unique, 9-digit number used for taxpayer identification, income reporting, and record-keeping purposes. Once issued, the number is valid for a lifetime. You should keep it safe and provide only as needed to US government agencies or credible financial institutions.

Who can apply

F-1 and J-1 students who are authorized for employment can apply for an SSN. More specifically:

When to apply

  • The application must be made before
    • your job at NYU starts, or
    • your off-campus work authorization expires
    • but certain exceptions are permissible due to COVID-19 restrictions
  • You may not apply earlier than 30 days before your work begin date. F-1 students applying for an SSN on Optional Practical Training apply at the same time as your OPT application with the government using the Form I-765.
  • Once you’ve submitted your application you should receive your SSN within 2-4 weeks. Students applying for an SSN with their OPT application should automatically receive your SSN within 2-4 weeks of your OPT application approval.

Note: SSN applications will not be accepted if there are fewer than fourteen days before the end of their work authorization. There may be an exception for students working on-campus. Please see more details below.

How to apply

If you work ON-CAMPUS

Update Your Record with Your SSN

For Student Employees including Employees covered by Local 2110 (including but not limited to Graduate Employee Adjuncts), once you receive your Social Security Number, you must update your record.

Please use this form from the Office of the Registrar to update your student record in NYU's Albert, Student Information System (SIS). Deliver the completed form and bring your SIGNED SSN card in person to the StudentLink Office at 383 Lafayette St, New York, NY 10003 or 5 MetroTech Center, Brooklyn, NY 11201.

Do not send your SSN over email.

If you work OFF-CAMPUS


If you need a number for TAX forms and don’t qualify for an SSN
If you are a spouse of an NYU student

Social Security Card Centers

Note: If you live in New Jersey or elsewhere, please use the Social Security Office Locator to find the center where you should apply.

Lost Your Social Security Card?

It’s important that you protect your SSN and guard yourself against identity theft. If you lost your SSN card you will need to reapply for a new one. You can only apply for a replacement card if you are authorized to work off-campus or have an on-campus job at NYU.

See more