How do Foreign Students Work in China Legally

How Work-Study Allows International Students to Legally Work in China Schedule and Compensation

To begin, the new document maintains the duration and salary regulations established in the Measures for the Administration of Work-Study in Institutions of Higher Learning, which state, "In principle, the time for students to participate in Work-Study shall not exceed 8 hours per week and 40 hours per month," and adds, "During the winter and summer vacations, the time for students to participate in Work-Study shall not exceed 16 hours per week." Whether it's an on-campus job or a work-study position in the community, the compensation foreign and Chinese students get is still on par with one another and does not go below the local minimum wage or living wage.

Information Regarding Federal Work-Study Programs Available on College and University Campuses

Eventually, overseas students may be allowed to apply for the same on-campus work-study opportunities that are now only available to Chinese students. However, work-study opportunities at the university that have an international focus and are tailored to foreign students may become available. On-campus work-study programs are often less complicated, more accessible, more uniform, and safer than their off-campus counterparts, although they may pay less.

A Note on Off-Campus Work-Study

These rules establish minimum standards that must be met before overseas students may participate in work-study programs that take place in the community. Freshmen are not eligible to engage in off-campus work-study activities since the policy specifies that only overseas students who have attended the present institution continuously for more than a year are eligible to do so. Additionally, the measures stated that only international students with "the remaining valid residence time of more than six months" can participate in off-campus work-study, effectively barring many international students holding short-term study visas/residence permits from taking advantage of off-campus work-study opportunities. In addition, the work-study program's reach must be restricted to the school's immediate neighborhood and the districts in which the school is situated.

It's important to note that these policies do not limit or direct where students may find off-campus work-study jobs, what sorts of employers can provide them, what sectors they must work in, what credentials their employers need, etc. Can overseas students participate in off-campus work-study activities such as language teaching? Do you hire overseas students to perform or even DJ at your bar? The local governments and institutions are required to provide implementation guidelines of the work-study management measures for foreign students, which should provide answers to these particular issues.

Study Advice

Reminder that fines, incarceration, and even deportation remain a possibility if your work-study activities go beyond the time and scope specified by law. Therefore, while participating in work-study activities, let's do it legally.

It will take some time for provincial education administrative departments and colleges and universities to formulate detailed work-study implementation rules for international students, especially to further regulate the conduct of off-campus work-study activities, even though these measures will have been promulgated by the end of 2021. Let's not rush this. After all, they've taken the first steps toward making it lawful for overseas students to have part-time work. If you want to study in China, I think you'll find it much simpler to do so in the future.

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