To All Students,
If you will be meeting degree requirements at the end of this semester, you may be eligible to apply for Optional Practical Training. Detailed information on how to apply is available online at http://www.temple.edu/ois/opt.htm.
Below is some general information regarding the application process for OPT:
The Application for Employment Authorization (Form I-765) based on Optional Practical Training must be sent to and processed by the United States Citizenship Immigration Service (USCIS). The application must be received by the USCIS Service Center and entered into their database no later than 60 days after you meet degree requirements.
That is, if you do not apply for OPT within 60 days of meeting degree requirements, you are no longer eligible to apply for Optional Practical Training.
A few additional points:
a) DO NOT CONFUSE GRADUATION WITH MEETING DEGREE REQUIREMENTS! A doctoral student meets degree requirements when s/he defends her/his dissertation even though that student may not attend the graduation ceremony. An undergraduate student may meet degree requirements at the end of December but decide to attend the May graduation ceremony. The OPT application has to be submitted within 60 days of meeting degree requirements, not graduation!
b) In order to be eligible for OPT, you have to be in valid F-1 status. This means that you must have been a full-time student every fall and every spring semester. If you withdrew from a class during a fall or spring semester and were in part-time status, but did not apply for and receive authorization to withdraw from a course, you should contact the OIS via e-mail ([log in to unmask]) immediately. For example, if you are an undergraduate student and you were registered for 18 credits and withdrew from one 3-credit course, you still have 15 credits and were full-time. However, if you are an undergraduate student, were registered for 12 credits, and then withdrew from one 3 credit course without applying for a reduced course load, you were not maintaining your status.
c) You are advised to attend one of the OPT sessions listed on the OPT application materials (found at http://www.temple.edu/ois/opt.htm). You should bring your OPT application with you. This includes the Academic Advisor's form signed by your academic advisor. Your academic advisor is the person who helps you register for classes (undergraduate students) or your thesis/dissertation advisor. Staff in the Office of International services are not academic advisors.
If you have already applied for employment authorization based on OPT for your current degree program, you may disregard this message.
If you have any questions regarding this information, you may visit or call our office (203B 1700 N Broad Street) during our regularly scheduled walk-in hours (Monday, Wednesday & Friday; 9:00 a.m. - 11:00 a.m. and 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.). You may also register for the sessions by replying to this message.
Office of International Services
203B 1700 N Broad Street
Philadelphia PA 19122
E-mail [log in to unmask]