International Student and OPT

Dear World,

Do you know as an international student, with a F-1 visa, you have an option to work off-campus in the United States.

According to DU International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS):

Students in F-1 or J-1 immigration status must receive prior authorization from ISSS (or the program sponsor, if different, for J-1 students) or United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) prior to engaging in off-campus employment. The type of employment authorization you may receive will depend on the nature of the employment, your immigration status, and the relationship of the employment to your academic program.

TypeMax DurationPurpose
F-1 CPT *NoneRequired or integral internship prior to completion of studies
F-1 OPT *12 months per degree levelPractical training in field of study, generally following completion of studies
F-1 OPT Extension for STEM Majors17 additional months of OPT. May only be used onceExtension of OPT benefit for students who completed degrees in qualifying STEM fields.

* For more information on F-1 Curricular Practical Training (CPT) or F-1 Optional Practical Training (OPT), you can attend one of our F-1 Employment workshops which are held throughout the year.

In the video below, Rida, our international student from Pakistan, had an interview with Mohammed who successfully got a job with Oracle after graduation from the University of Denver. It is available with English, Chinese (Traditional), Chinese (Simplified) and Cantonese captions.

Let’s check out some of the tips that you may need to search for a job in the US!

Visit DU International Student & Scholar Services (ISSS) for more information on OPT and CPT eligibility, requirements and how to apply.


International Student

Author: Anh Chip Pham

Video producer: Rida Noor

Video Editor: Grace Sullivan

Learn more about other international student experiences at the University of Denver:

My On-Campus Job and Tips on How to get one

Colorado’s Job Market

Tips to be successful at the University of Denver

On-campus job at DU

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