Optional Practical Training
What is it?
Eligible F-1 students may engage in optional practical training for a total of 12 months:
You don't need a job offer in order to apply for OPT, but you must apply for OPT before you complete your studies. One can apply as early as possible within the last semester of studies.
How do I apply?
To apply for OPT, please contact your International Student Advisor for an appointment if you have questions after you have read the information on this website and have completed all the forms to the best of your ability. While your International Student Advisor can recommend OPT permission, it is the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Service(USCIS) that must approve the OPT. The Advisor will verify that you are in lawful F-1 status and then make a notation on your "SEVIS" I-20.
Students must file Form I-765, Application for Employment Authorization Document (EAD), with USCIS. This is an on-line process. Forms and more detailed information can be answered at USCIS - I-765 Application. If approved, USCIS will issue an EAD to the student. The filing fee for an I-765 is $380.00.