Work Opportunities for International Students.

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OPTIONAL PRACTICAL TRAINING (OPT)

ELIGIBILITY

REPORTING

UNEMPLOYMENT PERIODS

GRACE PERIOD

TRAVEL ISSUES

Please visit the ICE website for guidance about travel while on the 12-month period of OPT.

EMPLOYMENT OPTIONS

TERMINATION

Reporting Employment Status to your ISA

NEW JOB

CHANGE TO A NEW JOB

SHORT-TERM (“GIG”) AND LESS THAN 10 DAYS BETWEEN

WORK FOR HIRE (START)

WORK FOR HIRE (ENDING 10+ DAYS BETWEEN)

10+ DAYS OF UNEMPLOYMENT

SELF-EMPLOYED BUSINESS OWNER (START)

SELF-EMPLOYED BUSINESS OWNER (END)

EXITING THE U.S. AND PRIOR TO THE END DATE

Applying for OPT

Application Procedure

  1. Complete either the F-1 Student Pre or F-1 Student Post Completion Optional Practical Training Recommendation Request form and submit to your International Student Advisor
  2. You will receive a signed Form I-20 from the International Student Advisor making the recommendation
  3. Gather required application materials:
    • Check or money order for $380 made payable to Department of Homeland Security
    • Completed Form I-765 (download form at www.uscis.gov)
    • Photocopies of new I-20 form provided to F-1 student by International Student Advisor at campus location
    • Photocopy of paper I-94 (front/back) or printout of electronic I-94 record
      • If have a passport admission stamp, visit www.cbp.gov/i94 to access and print out electronic I-94 record
    • Photocopy of passport and visa
    • Two recent passport-style photos on white background. The photos must be 2x2 inches; the images must be one inch from the hair to the chin and 1.25 inches from eye height to the bottom of the photo. Your name and I-94 number must be printed in pencil on the back of the photos. For reference, see photo examples
  4. File Form I-765 at one of the official Filing Addresses for Form I-765

APPLICATION GUIDELINES

  • An F-1 student can apply for 12 months of OPT at each education level, (i.e., an F-1 student may have 12 months of OPT at the bachelor’s level and another 12 months of OPT at the master's level)
  • Student will receive a new Form I-20 from the International Student Advisor at a campus location that shows recommendation for employment
  • An F-1 student must apply for work authorization by electronically filing a Form I-765, "Application for Employment Authorization," with U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) and paying a filing fee. USCIS will send F-1 student Form I-766, "Employment Authorization Document," (EAD) upon approving Form I-765
  • An F-1 student must wait to start work until after receiving the EAD

Application Timelines

AUTHORIZED EMPLOYMENT DATES

OPT Extension with STEM degree

Overview

ELIGIBILITY

APPLICATION PROCEDURE

  1. Complete the F-1 Student Optional Practical Training STEM Extension Recommendation Request Form and submit to your International Student Advisor
  2. You will receive a signed Form I-20 from the International Student Advisor making the recommendation
  3. Gather required application materials:
    • Check or money order for $380 made payable to: Department of Homeland Security
    • Completed Form I-765 (download Form at www.uscis.gov)
    • Photocopies of your new I-20 form provided by your International Student Advisor from a campus location
    • Photocopy of paper I-94 (front/back) or print out of electronic I-94 record
      • If you have a passport admission stamp, visit www.cbp.gov/i94 to access and print out electronic I-94 record
    • Photocopy of passport and visa
    • Two recent passport-style photos on white background. The photos must be 2x2 inches; the images must be 1 inch from the hair to the chin and 1.25 inches from eye height to the bottom of the photo. Your name and I-94 number must be printed in pencil on the back of the photos. For reference, see photo examples 
  4. File Form I-765 at one of the official Filing Addresses for Form I-765

APPLICATION GUIDELINES

APPLICATION TIMELINES

REPORTING

Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

Eligibility

APPLICATION GUIDELINES

REQUIREMENTS

COURSEWORK

ON-CAMPUS JOB OPPORTUNITIES FOR INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

ELIGIBILITY

REQUIREMENTS

FOR F-1 TRANSFERS