Who Can Apply of OPT
A degree-seeking F-1 student who:
- Has been enrolled full-time for one full academic year
- Academic year = consecutive fall and spring semester enrollment
- Is maintaining valid F-1 status
- Is physically present in the U.S.
- Intends to pursue a practical training or employment opportunity directly related to their major field of study
- Has not been authorized for 365+ days of full-time Curricular Practical Training (CPT) at the same degree level
- Has not been authorized for 12 months of OPT at the same or higher degree level
No job offer is required to apply for OPT.
Types of OPT
There are three types of OPT:
- Pre-completion OPT – employment authorization to begin and end before you complete your degree program requirements
- Post-completion OPT – employment authorization to begin after you complete your degree program requirements
- STEM Extension OPT – 24 month extension for eligible Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) majors to begin after an authorized period of post-completion OPT.