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Optional Practical Training

What is Post-Completion OPT?

Post-Completion Optional Practical Training (OPT) is temporary employment authorization issued by U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). The work students pursue while on Post-Completion OPT must be directly related to his/her/their major field of study. Post-Completion OPT may be used either 1) after the completion of a degree program or 2) after completion of all course requirements other than thesis, project or comprehensive final exam. Post-Completion OPT is generally issued for a duration of 12 months, but may be for less time if the student has previously applied and been granted Pre-Completion OPT. 

How do I apply for Post-Completion OPT?

  1. Review the Optional Practical Training (OPT) handout which is available at the CIE office or on our website
  2. Schedule an appointment with a CIE advisor once you have all the required documentation
  3. A CIE advisor will issue your an OPT request I-20 and prepare your OPT application.
  4. CIE will mail your application to USCIS via UPS. 
  5. Wait for EAD card to arrive before beginning any employment (paid or unpaid).
  6. Submit a copy of your EAD card and the required employer information once you receive your card and begin working and upon any changes.
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