F-1: Optional Practical Training (OPT)
OPT is a benefit of F-1 status that allows students to work off-campus in a field related to their area of study. OPT is most often used by Babson students following completion of their academic program.
There is a limit of 12 months of full-time OPT per degree level. OPT may be used before completion of studies (pre-completion), after completion of studies (post-completion) or a combination of both.
- Part-time OPT (up to 20 hours/week) is deducted at half of the full-time rate (two months of part-time OPT = one month of full time OPT) before completion of studies. After completion of studies, part-time OPT is counted at the full-time rate.
- Full-time OPT (more than 20 hours/week) can only be granted during official college breaks or after completion of studies.
The 24-month STEM OPT extension is available for certain eligible students. More details can be found at www.babson.edu/isssstemopt.
- You must currently be maintaining valid F-1 status and must have been enrolled full-time for at least one academic year before applying for OPT.
- You are only authorized to work within the dates specified on the EAD.
- Post-Completion OPT additional considerations:
- You must not have been authorized for more than 365 days of full-time CPT at your current degree level.
- If you depart the U.S. before your OPT application is filed and received by USCIS you become ineligible to apply.
- If you do not complete your academic program by the date originally specified, contact Glavin Office immediately; you may not be eligible to work with the EAD you received.
- In order to maintain F-1 status while on OPT, students must report their address and employment changes to ISSS and must not exceed 90 days of unemployment during the entire 12-month OPT period.
USCIS Application Processing Times can range from two to five months. Applications are processed in order they are received. There is no expediting the process.
Pre-completion OPT applications may be filed up to 90 days prior to the completion of one full academic year.
- Call the Glavin Office at 781-239-4565 to schedule an individual OPT workshop with an advisor. See the materials list in Step 2 below for the forms and documents required.
Post-completion OPT applications may be filed up to 90 days before the completion of studies, and up to 60 days after the completion of studies.
For post-completion OPT, you must attend an OPT workshop in your last semester, about three-four months prior to your anticipated employment start date, in order to learn about the application process and materials.
Spring 2020 OPT Workshops (May 2020 graduates):
NOTE: UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE, IN-PERSON OPT WORKSHOPS HAVE BEEN SUSPENDED - EMAIL ISSS@BABSON.EDU TO ARRANGE AN APPOINTMENT.
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All workshops will be held in Malloy 102.
|Date of Workshop||Time|
|Every Friday, beginning 02/07/2020||11:00-12:00pm|
*If you arrive late you will need to attend another session.
*The earliest date to submit an OPT application to USCIS is February 18, 2020.
Participants must arrive on time. The workshop will last about one hour in length. ISSS recommends bringing the documents listed in step 2 and your laptop. During the workshop an advisor will review all aspects of the OPT application process, materials and answer questions. Complete applications will be accepted at the end of the OPT Workshop or can be submitted at the Glavin Office Front Desk in Hollister 220 for 48-hour processing.
UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE, OPT APPLICATION SUBMISSIONS MUST BE SUBMITTED TO ISSS ELECTRONICALLY: http://babson.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_8kTEBfg7Qi6RByt.
An advisor will review your information and mail you the new Form I-20 with OPT recommendation. Any edits needed will be communicated to you. Then, you will mail everything to USCIS.
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Bring the following completed documents, along with the OPT Acknowledgement & Date Form you received at the OPT Workshop to the front desk of the Glavin Office (Hollister 220) during our normal business hours (8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m., Monday-Friday). You will then schedule a 15-minute appointment to pick up your application after the 48-hour processing time.
If you have questions prior to the submission of your application please go to Walk-In Advising hours to speak with an advisor, however, advisors will not review application materials prior to submission.
- Form I-765, Application For Employment Authorization (pdf)
- Download the blank form to your desktop and complete it using Adobe (not a web browser)
- Click here for a Post-Completion OPT - Sample I-765 (pdf)
- Form G-1145 - e-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance (pdf) (to receive an email and/or text message confirming that your OPT application has been accepted at a USCIS Lockbox facility)
- Form G-1450, Authorization for Credit Card Transactions (pdf) (optional; to pay the filing fee with a credit card instead of a personal/bank check or money order. This payment option is new and ISSS does not recommend it due to the risk of rejection if the information is not accurate.)
Additional documents to bring to the OPT Workshop/include in your application:
- Copy of all previously issued Form I-20s (pages 1 & 3); include Form I-20s issued by another U.S. school (if applicable)
- Copy of your most recent I-94 (arrival/departure record). Your I-94 travel history is not needed.
- Copy of F-1 visa (or approval notice for change of status to F-1)
- Copy of passport page(s) which shows your photo, full name, and passport expiration date
- Two properly-formatted USCIS photographs (write your name and SEVIS ID# lightly on the back of each photo). Do not use photos that had been used in the past.
- Bank check, personal check or money order made out to U.S. Department of Homeland Security for $410.00. Write your name and SEVIS ID# in the memo section. Do not write on the back of the check.
- Copy of any previously issued EAD (if you have been approved for OPT in the past)
- OPT Acknowledgement & Date Form (provided at the in-person workshop)
UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE, THERE WILL BE NO IN-PERSON APPOINTMENTS. SEE STEP TWO FOR THE OPT SUBMISSION PROCESS WHERE YOUR NEW FORM I-20 WITH OPT RECOMMENDATION WILL BE SENT TO YOU VIA MAIL.
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If your OPT materials submitted to ISSS are in order, a new Form I-20 with an OPT recommendation will be created.
You will meet with an advisor during a pre-scheduled 15-minute appointment (made at least one day in advance through the Glavin Office Front Desk) to pick up your new Form I-20 and OPT application.
The new Form I-20 should be used for future international travel; however, you should keep all Form I-20s that were previously issued for your personal records.
Your application must be received by USCIS within 30 days of the advisors OPT recommendation.
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