Currently, international students who maintain an F-1 status have the permission to participate in Optional Practical Training (OPT).

What is Optional Practical Training (OPT)?

OPT is a temporary employment agreement that allows a student to work with a US employer legally, as long as the nature of the work is directly related to the international student’s course of study. Students who have a valid F-1 student visa may be eligible to participate in an OPT program. To learn more about acquiring an F-1 student visa, please visit:
F-1 Visa and Status

Expansion of Optional Practical Training Program

After reviewing the current optional practical training (OPT) program for F-1 students, USCIS and ICE are expected to improve it. ICE is expected to propose regulations that help with expanding eligibility with degree programs for STEM OPT extensions and to also expand the time period STEM students would be eligible for the OPT program.
USCIS and ICE are also expected to “take steps to ensure that OPT employment is consistent with U.S. labor market protections to safeguard the interests of U.S. workers in related fields.”

New maximum work period.

The Immigration and Customs Enforcement agency is set to put out fresh regulations that govern the optional practical training program. These new regulations will give foreign graduates of universities and colleges in the United States the right to work, for a maximum period of 29 months, within their particular fields of study upon graduation.

More degree programs eligible for OPT.

Notably, Johnson requested that the number of degree programs which are eligible for the optional practical training program should be expanded, and for the duration of the OPT status to be increased for students undertaking engineering, science, mathematics and technology programs of study.

Changes in OPT Employment

It has been stated that the optional practical training program needs more robust ties to the institutions that grant degrees. Additionally, OPT employment must hold true to the labor market protections of the United States to ensure that that U.S. citizens who work in related fields of employment are not adversely impacted.

Are You Concerned About How Executive Orders On Immigration Can Impact Your Life?

If you feel recent Executive Oorders On Immigration will impact your legal status within the United States you need to speak with an experienced immigration attorney as soon as possible. Please contact us online or call our Vienna, Virgnia office directly at 703.991.7978 or our Rockville, Maryland office at 301.637.5392 to schedule your case consultation.

Yuvora Nong
Helping VA, MD & Washington D.C. clients with all of their immigration law legal needs since 1997.
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