F-1 Optional Practical Training
PRE-COMPLETION OPT - INSTRUCTIONS
How to Apply
OPT Application Timeline – Apply Early! It can take immigration up to 90 days to process your application.
Students may file a Form I-765 for pre-completion OPT up to 90 days before being enrolled for one full academic year, provided that the
period of employment will not start prior to the completion of the full academic year.
If you are beyond the first year of study, we recommend you submit your application no earlier than 120 days prior to the start date you
request for your OPT.
Dates of OPT Authorization
The OPT card is approved for a specific beginning and end date. You must identify those dates on the OPT Request Form. For OPT after completion
of studies or graduation, the beginning date can be no later than 60 days after the date you complete your studies. If you have questions about
your OPT dates, please discuss this with an OISS adviser.
Schedule an OPT appointment at OISS
OPT must be recommended by OISS before submitting the application to USCIS. Your first step is to schedule an appointment with our office –
email firstname.lastname@example.org or stop by the office to sign up. Time slots will be available Tuesday through Friday, from January 20 to April 3,
2009. Appointments will be scheduled in small group format, with time for individual questions. The session will last no longer than one hour.
Your OPT applications will be reviewed for completeness and accepted for processing at the close of the session.
Submit your application materials, as listed below, (minus the check and photos) to the OISS adviser at the end of your OPT appointment.
The OPT Request Form, to be downloaded from OISS website at http://www.oiss.yale.edu/visa/preOPT_requestform.pdf, which is to be
signed by your dean, department chairperson, or academic adviser.
The completed form I-765, to be downloaded from USCIS website at http://www.uscis.gov/files/form/I-765_form.pdf, questions 1-16 only
o Check the box: “permission to accept employment”
o Question 3: Make certain that the address you put in item #3 will be valid for the next 90 to 120 days as that is where your receipt
and employment card will be sent). Mail from USCIS will not be forwarded by the US Postal Service.
o Question 10: Number from your I-94 card (little white card stapled in your passport) 11 digit number
o Question 16: Eligibility code (c) (3) (A)
o Question 17: Leave blank
o Make sure your certification signature is in blue ink and does not touch any text or lines
A copy of your I-94 form (both sides) and a copy of the visa and identification pages from your passport (ID pages include your photo, passport
expiration date, and passport #)
Copies of all previous I-20s front and back. Pre SEVIS I-20 pages 3 and 4, Post SEVIS I-20s pages 1 and 3.
Two recent photographs per the attached instructions from USCIS http://www.oiss.yale.edu/visa/photoguide.pdf. Write your name and SEVIS
number in pencil on the back of the photos. Do not cut to size or staple.
A check for $340 payable to US Department of Homeland Security
OISS OPT Recommendation I-20
OISS will review your application and submit a recommendation for OPT by updating your record in SEVIS. The SEVIS system will produce a new
I-20, a copy of which you will submit with your application for optional practical training. You will receive an email within three business days
notifying you that your OPT I-20 is ready for pick up. You will include a copy of this new I-20 with the rest of your OPT application materials.
Mailing Your Application to USCIS
You must send your application and documentation to the USCIS Service Center that processes applications from the state listed in the
address section of your I-765. Those with addresses in CT, DE, ME, MD, MA, NH, NJ, NY, PA, PR, RI, VT, VA, US Virgin Islands, WV and DC will
send their application to USCIS Service Center, 75 Lower Welden Street, St. Albans, VT 05479-0001. Those with addresses in other states can
go to http://www.uscis.gov/files/form/I-765_instructions.pdf, for the I-765 instructions on where to mail their applications
Make sure to send your application via certified mail with a return receipt or tracking number.
Keep a copy of all application materials for your records.
Office of International Students and Scholars - Yale University
421 Temple Street, New Haven, CT 06511 ☼ Phone: 203.432.2305 ☼ Fax: 203.432.7166 ☼ email@example.com