Optional Practical Training (OPT) is a benefit of F-1 non-immigrant student status that permits up to 12 months of off-campus employment, typically after graduation, for the purpose of gaining independent practical experience that is related to your major field of study. Types of OPT:
1. Post-Completion OPT provides for up to one year of practical training authorization after completion of studies. Most Albion students choose to apply for post-completion OPT in their graduating semester. Click here for CIE's OPT Request Form, Instructions, and Information Sheet
2. 24 Month STEM OPT Extension allows students who have received a degree and OPT related to specific STEM degrees to apply for a 24-month STEM OPT extension after completion of post-completion OPT. Click here for CIE's STEM_OPT_Guide and here for CIE's STEM-OPT Request Form.
3. Pre-completion OPT is available on a part-time basis while a student is working on their degree. Pre-completion OPT allows work during school sessions (20 hours per week or less) or on a full-time basis during school breaks (over 20 hours per week). Part-time OPT will be deducted from the 12 months of available OPT at one-half the full-time rate. Important Note: CPT is often a better option for international students than pre-completion OPT.
Students can apply up to 90 days before and up to 60 days after program completion. USCIS adjudicates the OPT application, and the process takes several months- apply early, and no later than the completion date of the final semester. In addition, the Form I-765 must be received by USCIS no later than 30 days after CIE submits your OPT recommendation to SEVIS.
|Earliest date to request OPT I-20 from CIE||February 3, 2020|
|USCIS must receive application on or before||June 30, 2020|
|Earliest date to request as "start date"||May 2, 2020|
|Latest date to request as "start date"||June 30, 2020|
Students on OPT whose employment information is not complete, or reflects more than 90 days of unemployment, will have their SEVIS record automatically terminated.
All F-1 Students on OPT – Within 10 days of the start of your period of OPT work authorization and within 10 days of any subsequent change, you are required to report the following:
All Students with an OPT STEM Extension – You are required to report all the above, plus the following:
Updates to the following information will result in CIE issuing an updated I-20: