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Post-completion OPT

General information

Post Completion Optional Practical Training may be authorized for an F-1 student who has lawfully enrolled in an academic program on a full-time basis for one full academic year, after the completion of the degree or after completion of all course requirements for the degree (excluding thesis or equivalent). Post-Completion OPT is OPT authorized for employment after a student’s program end date on their Form I-20.

OPT application procedure

Step 1: complete the OPT I-20 request

To complete the OPT I-20 request, log into the ISSS portal and complete OPT request. 


Step 2: pick up OPT I-20 at OGE front desk 

You will receive an email when your OPT I-20 is ready for pick up. This process may take 7 - 10 business days. 

Please carefully read the pick up procedure below.

  1. Be prepared to show your CMU student ID to the front desk staff. OPT I-20s will not be given to friends or relatives.
  2. The front desk staff will give you your I-20. Please note the OPT I-20s are not in the baskets at the OGE.
  3. You will be asked to complete the OPT Recommendation I-20 Review Form to verify the information on your I-20 is accurate.
  4. You will sign and give the OPT Recommendation I-20 Review Form to the OGE front desk before leaving the OGE.

As a reminder, your OPT I-765 application must be received by USCIS within 30 days of the OPT Recommendation I-20 issuance. The date of issuance can be found on page 1 of the I-20 next to the DSO signature.

Step 3: complete the I-765 on USCIS's portal

To access the I-765 form, visit  USCIS's portal. 

Please note that the OPT application must be received by USCIS within 30 days of the OPT I-20 being issued (on page 1 of the I-20 by the Designated School Official's signature.

Once an application has been received by USCIS, it may take 90 or more days to complete processing. Premium processing is available for OPT applications and can be filed at any time for an additional fee. Students are not allowed to begin employment until they receive the EAD in the mail and the start date has been reached. Please allow sufficient time for processing.​​