What is CPT and OPT???

MS/Phd/MBA/Pharmacy students in USA are allowed to have only on-campus employment(Working with in University Campus). But Optional Practical Training (OPT) and Curricular Practical Training (CPT) provide opportunities for qualified F-1 visa status students to gain off-campus(Working outside the campus) employment.
Curricular Practical Training (CPT)

CPT is off-campus employment in the form of an internship, co-op, or practicum. CPT is available to students who will continue to work towards their degree and are in legal F-1 student status for at least nine months before applying for CPT, who are admitted to a graduate program in full standing, and who are eligible to register (no holds).
YOU MUST HAVE AN JOB OFFER LETTER IN HAND to begin the CPT process.

Optional Practical Training (OPT) OPT is temporary employment that is directly related to a student's field of study. Students holding F-1 visas are eligible for a maximum of twelve months of OPT authorization for each level of study (BS, MS, PhD). Most students apply for OPT as they approach the end of their current degree program. Participating in OPT "after" completion of studies offers the opportunity to apply skills to "real world" situations. OPT work cannot begin until the student has obtained an Employment Authorization Document (EAD). Students should allow at least 120 days for the EAD to be processed. For this reason, students need to attend an OPT workshop and submit the necessary paperwork well in advance of their preferred OPT start date.

CPT vs OPT CURRICULAR PRACTICAL TRAINING VS OPTIONAL PRACTICAL TRAI NING CPT requires a job offer V S OPT does not require a job offer

CPT requires enrollment in a special classin w hich on-the-job training is required and for which course credit is received duri ng the quarter the employment takes place CPT issued for summer employmentwould req uire the student to pay summerfees for 3 unit minimum enrollment = $. (NOTE: if you receive d6 fullV time months of OPT prior togr S aduating. butfulltime OPT (over 20 hours a we ek) isdeducted at fulltime rate from the 12months o f OPT.$$$ OPT does not require you to e nroll inany class V S OPT does not require the student to pa y V $ for class registration. Both CPT and OPT do not allow the student to begin employment prior to completing the first academic year (unless required of the degree. ‡ . (NOTE: if youw ork 6 months of fulltime CPT you will not affect the 12 month s of OPT) ‡ Both CPT and OPT require that the proposed employment be related to the student¶s field of study.) CPT is authorized for a specific employerfor w ork related to student¶s field ofstudies CPT is issued by theICenter within 5-10working days CPT work permit is grantedon the I -20 (page 3) CPT may only be issued for work prior to graduation. you will have 6 mon ths leftupon graduation. or less)CPT is never accumu lated or deducted from OPT. an d based on CPT). but would requ S ire $340 USCIS processing fee OPT allows work w/ ANY emplo yer basedon student¶s field of stud ies V S OPT is issued by the USCIS within 90 days V S (after preliminary processing by ICenter) OPT work permit is called t he EAD(Employment Autho V rizationDocument) S OPT allows for employmen t bothprior to and after grad uation V S OPT issued parttime (20 hours or less) is deducted at halftime rate. and prior tocompletion of course units required fordegree CPT usually does not affect OPT as longas the CPT issued does not reach 12 fulltime months. Parttime (20 hours.

.‡ Both CPT and OPT require the student to have received the authorization t o work prior to beginning employment.

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