Overview

 F-1 students studying at colleges, universities, conservatories, or seminaries may qualify for practical training, which allows them to engage in temporary employment to gain practical experience in their field of study.

 Eligibility

An F-1 student could be eligible for two kinds of Optional Practical Training:

1.   Pre-Completion OPT, prior to the completion of all coursework excluding thesis or dissertation credits:

  • You have been enrolled as a full-time student in valid F-1 status on the same SEVIS record for at least one academic year.
  • Your proposed experience (internship, work, practicum, etc.) is directly related to your major field of study.
  • You will not be working more than 20 hours per week while school is in session.

 

2.   Post-Completion OPT, after the completion of all necessary coursework excluding thesis or dissertation credits:

  • You have been lawfully enrolled as a full-time student in valid F-1 status on the same SEVIS record for at least one academic year.
  • Your proposed experience (internship, work, practicum, etc.) is directly related to your major field of study.
  • You will be working up to 40 hours per week.

 

To Apply
  1. If you are applying for post-completion OPT, make sure that you have officially registered for graduation or can demonstrate that you are enrolled in only thesis or dissertation hours. If you do not end up graduating as planned, you are still responsible for maintaining your status on OPT and finishing your coursework during your OPT validity period.
  2. Complete the OPT I-20 Request Form, found here
  3. Prepare the following documents and send copies of them in an email to ISSS@kent.edu:
     
    1. A copy of your passport biographical page
    2. A copy of your most recent U.S. visa
    3. An original check or money order, made out to "U.S. Department of Homeland Security" for $380
    4. A copy of your I-94 number printout, found here.
    5. Two recent 2" x 2" passport-style photos, taken within the last 30 days, with I-94 number written in pencil on the back
    6. The completed Form I-765, found here. Follow the OPT tutorial here for assistance completing this form.
    7. A copy of any previous EAD cards, if you have received one before
    8. A job offer letter, if you have already been offered a job

Note: You will receive an email when your new I-20 is ready to be picked up.

 

 

You may print off this guide here: OPT Guide