Graduate International Student Admissions & Services
Post-Completion Optional Practical Training (OPT) is authorized employment for up to 12 months that is done after the completion of a program of study. Students can apply up to 90 days before and up to 60 days after program completion.
Students are advised to apply for post-completion OPT before completing their final semester in order to avoid losing days of employment availability.
- Available for a cumulative maximum of 12 months per educational level, whether pre- or post-completion.
- USCIS processing of OPT applications is approximately 2-3 months.
- Employment must be full-time, that is, more than 20 hours per week.
- Employment must be directly related to the student's program of study.
- Employment begins and ends on the dates listed on the Employment Authorization Card.
- Limit of 90 days of unemployment.
- Reporting requirements
- A one-time 17-month extension of OPT may be available to students with certain STEM degrees.
- Full-time enrolled at least one full academic year (two long semesters)
- Currently in valid F-1 status
- Currently in final semester; or, have completed all coursework except for thesis/dissertation; or, within 60 days after program completion date
- Carefully review the information in the OPT Guide or attend an OPT workshop.
- Submit the following to Graduate International Student Admissions and Services (GISAS):
- A completed Post-Completion OPT I-20 Request Form
- Copy of a complete USCIS Form I-765. Refer to these instructions for completing the Form I-765 for standard OPT.
- If you have not yet applied for graduation, an email sent to email@example.com from your academic advisor confirming that you are expected to graduate upon successful completion of the current semester.
- Copies of any previously issued Employment Authorization Cards
- Within 3-5 business days the graduate international student advisor will issue your OPT Form I-20 and email you to schedule an OPT appointment.
- At your OPT appointment, you will receive your OPT Form I-20 and assemble your OPT application packet for mailing.
- You will mail your OPT application packet to USCIS. The USCIS I-765 application processing time is approximately 2-3 months.
- USCIS Form G-1145, E-Notification of Application/Petition Acceptance (optional)
- Two passport photos
- Check or money order for $380, made payable to Department of Homeland Security
- Original signed USCIS Form I-765
- Copy of OPT Form I-20, pages 1 and 3
- Copy of passport ID page showing picture and expiration date
- Copy of I-94, card or print out
- Copy of F-1 visa
- SEVIS CPT page (provided by the graduate international student advisor)
Mailing the Application Packet
According to the USCIS website, the application mailing address is determined by the address listed on the Form I-765.
Mail to the Dallas Lockbox if the address listed on your Form I-765 is to one of these states: Alabama, Arkansas, Connecticut, Delaware, District of Columbia, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New York, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Puerto Rico, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Oklahoma, Tennessee, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, US Virgin Islands, or West Virginia.
For US Postal Service (USPS) delilveries:
PO Box 660867
Dallas, TX 75266
For express mail and courier deliveries:
2501 S. State Hwy. 121 Business Suite 400
Lewisville, TX 75067
Mail to the Phoenix Lockbox if the address listed on your Form I-765 is to any other US state.
For US Postal Service (USPS) deliveries:
PO Box 21281
Phoenix, AZ 85036
For express mail and courier deliveries:
1820 E. Skyharbor Circle S, Suite 100
Phoenix, AZ 85034
- Report any changes to legal name and residential or mailing address within 10 days of the changes
- Report any changes to employer, employer address, and/or start and end date of employment within 10 days of the changes.
- Use the OPT Student Employment Report Form to report changes. Submit to firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Confirmation that your SEVIS record has been updated will be emailed within three business days of submission of your report.
The Department of Homeland Security has indicated that OPT students who do not fulfill reporting requirements may lose their F-1 status.
Please note that updating your address through your myUTTyler account does not update your address in the SEVIS system. To ensure your address is updated in SEVIS, notify the graduate international student advisor at email@example.com.