F-1: Student Visa
The university, after accepting a student, will send an I
After being admitted to the
If any of the requirements are not followed and permission for an
exception has not been granted, the student will be considered "out
of status" and in violation of visa obligations.
There are certain benefits of being "in status": employment,
program extension, transfer, CPT, and OPT. None of these are possible when
not in status.
F-1 Change of Level, Transfer
The student must also present both I-20s to the new institution within 15
days of beginning classes.
Change of Level: If the student wants to change level (i.e. Bachelor's
degree to Master's degree) while remaining at UW-Stout, a new I-20 with
the new educational program noted is necessary after the student has been
If changing universities, the same process as transferring should be
In order to return to the
All F-1 students, if in status and following the weekly hour limits, are
eligible to have "non federal" work study jobs on campus. Before
working on campus, students must have a social security card, which can be
obtained at the Social Security Office at 715 S. Barstow,
Student jobs are advertised on the bulletin boards outside the Financial
Aid Office, Bowman 210; it is also possible the various departments have
F-1 Curricular and Optional
CPT may be part-time, twenty hours or less, or full-time. If the student
accumulates twelve months of full-time CPT, post-completion PT will not be
possible. Part-time CPT has no limit and does not effect eligibility for
It will be necessary to show that the employment is required for studies.
Also necessary is a written job offer.
Optional Practical Training
(OPT): OPT is available to F-1 students who have
been enrolled on a full-time basis for at least nine months and is
intended to provide temporary employment in the field of study for the
purpose of gaining practical experience. There is a limit of 12 months for
OPT, with part-time OPT counted as part of actual time employed (ie. 6
months of part time OPT will permit only 9 additional months of full time
It is necessary to have a job offer before applying if: the OPT is during
summer vacation and the student intends to register for the following
semester, school is in session and the OPT does not exceed 20 hours per
week, and after completion of course requirements except for a thesis
(when part of course requirements). A job offer is not necessary to apply
for OPT after completion of the course.
It is very important to apply for OPT two to three months before the
intended starting date as the INS sometimes takes considerable time
processing the application. The application may be submitted up to 60 days
after completion of program of study.
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