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Post-Completion OPT

Post-Completion OPT is defined as employment which is directly related to your major area of study after completion of studies. You do not need to have a job offer to apply for Post-Completion OPT.

Before you apply for Post-Completion OPT, you must attend an OPT Workshop held by OIA or review the OPT Guides:

OPT Checklists:

Am I eligible to apply?

A student is eligible for OPT if you have been full-time for one academic year at Pratt, you have not used all of the practical training available to you in your current level of study and you have not been authorized for 12 months or more of full-time CPT (Study in the States).

What you need to apply

  1. Review the Optional Practical Training (OPT) Guide at the link above and consider attending a workshop.
  2.  Email everything on the OPT I-20 Checklist below to OIA and receive your OPT I-20.
  3. Once you receive your OPT I-20 from OIA, you must complete Form I-765 and prepare a paper OPT I-765 application to mail to USCIS (Form I-765, plus fee, pictures, and additional required documentation on the OPT I-765 application checklist) within 15 days. This application is time-sensitive after you receive your OPT I-20 from OIA, and your care and accuracy in submission is crucial.
  4. Mail your application to USCIS.
    1. Use the OPT Guide above for guidance.
    2. Double-check the mailing address. The address depends on whether you are using Express Mail service or USPS and which state you are sending the application from. Remove all staples and paperclip all application materials together with one paperclip.
    3. Please note any errors on your OPT application may result in denial of your OPT by USCIS, and unfortunately there is no recourse for denial.

Note: You can get your OPT I-20 and get I-765 Assistance the same day or a different day. OPT applications must be mailed within 15 days of getting the OPT I-20.

OPT I-20 Checklist

Email items # 1–6 to receive your OPT I-20 from OIA.

  1. Copy of your unexpired passport picture page
    1. It must be valid six months into the future. If is expiring within six months, renew it before coming to OIA
  2. Most Recent I-94 Record
    1. Download and print your most recent I-94 record online. Please print this before coming to OIA.
    2. Note: If you have a paper I-94 card and there is no I-94 record on-line, make a copy of the card.
  3. Student Information Sheet
    1. The OPT beginning date must fall within 60 days of the last day of class. (Ex. If the last day of class is May 12, 2020 then May 13, 2020 can be the first beginning date for OPT and you can begin any time until July 11, 2020.) 
  4. Completion of Studies Form
    1. Signed by your Academic Advisor
    2. Your Academic Advisor must circle which semester you are completing and make any comments if there are any. 
  5. Maintaining F-1 status while on Post-completion OPT form
    1. Initial each line and sign the bottom. 
  6. Degree Audit – you can get it from MyPratt > Academic Tools
    1. Check to make sure it is “clean.” Your degree audit must have no outstanding classes remaining on it, and all prior grades must be inputted, before you can receive your OPT recommendation.
    2. If you have concerns about your degree audit status, please consult with your academic advisor and the Registrar prior to coming to OIA.

OPT I-765 Application Checklist

Once you receive your OPT I-20 from OIA, you are ready to mail your I-765 Application to USCIS. 
The following items must be mailed with your OPT I-20 to USCIS.

Assemble the application in the following order:
Form G-1145 

  • Type this, do not hand-write.
  • Put this on top of your whole application.
  • You will then get notifications via text and email.

personal check or money order for $410; make payable to:

  • U.S. Department of Homeland Security.  Sign it. Date it.
  • In the memo line write “OPT and your SEVIS number.”
  • If you get a money order, sometimes there is information you need to write in.
  • If the money order is from the USPS, tear off the receipt for your records.

Two passport style photos on a white/light background

  • Write name and SEVIS ID on back.
  • Photos must meet criteria.
  • See examples in OPT Guide above.

OPT Cover Letter 

  • Please fill out and sign at the bottom.

Form I-765

You are responsible for filling out your I-765 correctly. Please make use of the I-765 Application guide above.

  • It should be typed and printed out single-sided
  • Note: page 2, item 27 code:  C 3 B
  • Sign it inside the box. (If your signature goes beyond the borders of the box, please “white out” and sign it again.)

Copies of all I-20s from every school you’ve attended in the U.S.

  • I-20’s from high school, ESL program, other U.S. institutions, etc.
  • Include copies of page 1 and 2 of each I-20.
  • It is not necessary to include copies of the Instructions page. (page 3)
  • Put the OPT I-20 first, then put in order from most recent to oldest.
  • If you are missing any, please insert a letter of explanation. See example in the OPT Guide.
  • Make sure they all have your signature at the bottom of p. 1

Copy of your unexpired passport picture page with expiration date

  • It must be valid six months into the future. If it is expiring within six months, renew it before coming to OIA

Copy of most recent F-1 entry visa (even if it has expired)

Print-out of most recent I-94 Record

  • Download your most recent I-94 record online.
  • “Get Most Recent I-94” If you have a paper card and there is no I-94 record online, make a copy. 

Copy of previous OPT card, if applicable

  • Make copies or take photos of the entire application
  • Remove all staples and secure with one paperclip
  • Remember single-sided copies are best

Mailing address: (> Foreign Students)

What happens after I apply?

It usually takes 3-4 months to process requests for OPT. After you receive your Employment Authorization Document (or EAD Card), you must provide OIA with a copy of the front and back of the document via email at While on Post-Completion OPT, you are required to report any change in legal name, change in address, and change/interruption of employment to OIA via email. See the “OPT Reporting” link in the left menu for guidance on what you will need to report to us.