As a non-immigrant on an F –1 student visa, in the United States, you may have the option to engage in practical training during your program or after it ends. Practical training can provide valuable work experience by sharpening and adding to the skills you are learning at SUNY New Paltz. There are two types of practical training opportunities available for F-1 students: curricular practical training (CPT) and optional practical training (OPT). Both CPT, and OPT are a benefit of maintaining your F-1 status. While on CPT or OPT, students are still in F-1student status, and the International Student Services Office continues to provide F-1 student status support while completing their practical training opportunity.
Curricular Practical Training
Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is employment authorization for an off-campus opportunity, which may or may not be required for a student’s program of study.
It is very common for student at SUNY New Paltz to complete CPT in their final year of study.
In order to qualify for CPT, students must be:
Optional Practical Training
Optional Practical Training (OPT) is 12 months of authorized off-campus employment directly related to their major field of study that can be used during their studies or after completion of their degree.
It is most common for student at SUNY New Paltz to complete OPT after completion of their degree/program of study.
In order to qualify for OPT, students must:
24 Month STEM OPT Extension
Students who graduate in certain Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) majors might be eligible to extend their 12-month Optional Practical Training period for an additional 24 months.
Students must submit an application for STEM extension to USCIS, and it must be received by USCIS before the current Post-Completion OPT expires.
In order to qualify for the 24-month STEM OPT extension, an F-1 student participating in an initial period of post-completion OPT must:
Employment Workshops (CPT and OPT)
International Student Program offers a number of employment
based workshops ever semester. Any F-1 international students
interested in the applying for Practical Training
opportunity must attend a workshop.
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SUNY New Paltz International Student Alumni Testimonials
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