Optional Practical Training

Optional Practical Training (OPT) is a possible benefit of F-1 student status. Optional Practical Training (OPT) may be available to F-1 students after completing one year of full-time enrollment at a U.S. college or university in the academic year immediately preceding OPT. Students may request up to one year of OPT per educational level (ex: one bachelors = one educational level, two master's degrees = one educational level).

Starting Fall 2016, OPT workshops are MANDATORY for all students applying for Post-Completion OPT. Students must attend either an in-person workshop, or complete an online session via eLearning if you have applied for graduation in the current semester.

Summer 2016 graduates

Application Dates:

Earliest date to request OPT I-20 from ISSO: May 10, 2016

USCIS must receive application on or before: Oct 9, 2016

OPT Start/End Dates:

Earliest OPT start date a student can request: Aug 11, 2016

Latest OPT start date a student can request:Oct 9, 2016

Fall 2016 graduates

Application Dates:

Earliest date to request OPT I-20 from ISSO: Sept. 16, 2016

USCIS must receive application on or before: Feb. 13, 2017

OPT Start/End Dates:

Earliest OPT start date a student can request: Dec. 16, 2016

Latest OPT start date a student can request:Feb. 13, 2017

OPT Resources

OPT Options