Social Security Cards

A Social Security Number (SSN) can only be obtained by a student on an F-1 or J-1 visa if they have an offer of employment. As many companies also use the Social Security number for identification purposes, you may need to follow different procedures for obtaining services. For example:

  • Cell Phones: If you do not have a SSN, you will be eligible only for a prepaid phone with most companies.
  • Driver's License: Tell the Driver's License Bureau that you have never applied for a card, and they will be able to process your application for a license.
  • Housing: You should be able to obtain rental housing if you can show that you have sufficient funds to pay for your rent.
  • Telephone Service: The local company in Ashland is Verizon. They will refer you to a Customer Verification Center if you do not have an SSN number.
  • IRS Reporting: Once a year international students, regardless of whether they have been employed or not, have to file a report with the IRS. You may file this form without an SSN.

If you have an offer of employment, but do not yet have a Social Security number, please follow these steps:


1) After securing a job offer, please make an appointment with Amelia Coffy ( Not sure about looking for work? Please review our On-Campus Employment webpage.

2) At this appointment you will complete employment forms and be given a Social Security letter. The university form, and the Social Security letter, will need to be signed by your supervisor. Your supervisor will collect the university forms and return the Social Security letter to you.

3) You must apply for a Social Security card immediately.

  • ASHLAND: The Social Security Administration visits Ashland only once a month, on the first Thursday of the month, from 10:00 AM - 1:00 PM. They use the offices of the Ashland Council on Aging, 240 E. Third Street, in downtown Ashland.
  • MANSFIELD: Located at 1287 S. Trimble Road. Take Route 42 S (Claremont Avenue) to U.S. Route 30 W to the Trimble Road exit. Turn left onto Trimble Road and travel approximately 3.5 to 4 miles, counting 9 traffic lights. Look for the Social Security office on your left, located behind Value City and across from the Appleseed Shopping Center entrance.
  • OTHER LOCATIONS: Check online at

4) When you go for your appointment, take with you:

  • Your passport and I-94 card (which should be stapled in your passport or printed from online).
  • Your I-20 or DS-2019
  • The Social Security Job Offer letter, signed by both your supervisor and Amelia Coffy or Scott Parillo.

5) You should receive your card in the mail in approximately 2 weeks.

6) After you have received your social security number you should notify the registrar's office, your supervisor, and, if employed at Ashland University, the payroll clerk in the business office.


1) After securing a job offer, please have the supervisor complete the first half of the Social Security Letter (from ISS).

2) Have a university DSO sign the second half of the letter.

3) See steps #3 thru #6 above about applying for a Social Security Card.