F-1 students who are currently working pursuant to a 17-month STEM OPT extension may apply to add seven months to their STEM OPT period provided they file Form I-765 Application for Employment Authorization on or before August 8, 2016. We recommend that any student working pursuant to a 17-month STEM OPT extension contact their international student advisor to secure an updated I-20, Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status.
STEM OPT refers to science, technology, engineering, and mathematics optional practical training.
The additional seven month extension is granted to F-1 students who:
Are currently participating in STEM OPT based on a 17-month extension;
Request the additional seven-month period by filing a new Form I-765 between May 10, 2016 and August 8, 2016, and within 60 days of the date the designated school official enters the recommendation for the 24-month OPT extension into SEVIS record; and
Have at least 150 days of valid employment authorization remaining on the 17 month STEM OPT period on the date the I-765 is filed with USCIS.
F-1 students will need to provide the USCIS with:
Form I-765 and application fee;
Form I-20, Certificate of Eligibility for Nonimmigrant Student Status, endorsed by the Designated School Official on or after May 6, 2016; and
Copy of the STEM Degree.