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International Student Services

Optional Practical Training (OPT)

» Optional Practical Training (OPT)

Optional Practical Training (OPT) is a benefit that permits students on an F-1 visa to gain work experience in the United States in their field of study after they have completed their degree program. OPT is not a visa; rather, it is an employment benefit for F-1 students who completed their degree program at Chapman and who meet the eligibility criteria. 

Post-Completion OPT grants students 12 months of work authorization.

F-1 students must first obtain a recommendation for OPT from ISS to apply for OPT through the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS). ISS will provide a new OPT form I-20 for the application submission with USCIS. 

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OPT Application Process


International Student Services provides general guidance. Any advice provided to you by the ISS should not be construed as legal advice.

Additionally, due to the fluid nature of governmental interpretation, government agencies such as USCIS/ICE/CBP may change their interpretation of immigration laws/regulations and eligibility requirements for benefits at any time. We will do our best to provide the most current guidance.

Each case is fact-specific and it is advised that you contact an experienced immigration attorney if you have questions regarding your situation.