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Work and Study in the United States: Optional Practical Training (OPT) Program

Work and Study in the United States: Optional Practical Training (OPT) Program

For most international students, studying in the United States is always associated with expenses, not income. But the Optional Practical Training (OPT) will change that perspective.
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Author:  Jarya Kotyleng

 

For most international students, studying in the United States is always associated with expenses, not income. But the Optional Practical Training (OPT) will change that perspective.

What is OPT and Who is Eligible?


Optional Practical Training (OPT) enables international graduates to gain vital work experience and enhance their skills while working in the United States. Indeed, if there had been no OPT options, most international students would have had no choice but to leave the United States upon graduation.

The OPT is primarily undertaken by most graduates upon completion of their program. Indeed, the goal of the OPT is to allow the international graduate to stay an additional year after the end of his studies in order to find a job and gain as much practical experience as possible during that year. In our previous article we covered Curricular Practical Training (CPT) which should not be confused with Optional Practical Training (OPT).

Although they appear to be similar, OPT should not be confused with CPT. As a reminder, Like the OPT, the CPT allows you to work in the USA for up to 12 months, but generally during your studies. The good news is that as an international student, you may be able to take both CPT and OPT, which will allow you to maximize your opportunities for work experience in the United States!

Who Can Apply for an OPT Visa?

 

Anyone with an F-1 visa and studying a college program at a university in the United States for at least 1 year can apply for the OPT. You don’t need to already have a job offer to apply for the OPT, which is an advantage over other temporary work permits in the United States, like the H-1B visa which requires an employer. sponsor.

 

To apply for the OPT, you primarily need an Employment Authorization Document (EAD) from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Service (USCIS) before you start working. Best of all, the Hospitality Academy International Student Services helps HA students apply for both EAD, OPT, and CPT.

Does my OPT job have to be related to your field of study?


One important thing to note is that OPT jobs must be related to the candidate’s field of study (your major, or diploma). Indeed, as a temporary work permit, the OPT allows you to deepen your knowledge on the subject you have studied and thus acquire skills and experience in jobs relevant to your university studies. For example, if you are studying for a degree in hotel management, you can use your OPT to work for a hotel or restaurant, but not to work in an advertising agency.

We are aware that the process of applying for and obtaining a work permit while studying can seem a bit hectic, but there is no need to worry. At Hospitality Academy we have a whole department that provides visa support, OPT and CPT application support so you don’t get overwhelmed.


Do you want to work and study in the United States? Admissions to Hospitality Academy are still open! We offer you a fast registration process, visa application assistance and placement assistance for a paid job in the USA.


Can’t wait? Apply here, now! 

 

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