OPT Application

OPT Application Process

These are the steps you need to take to successfully apply for OPT:

Pre- and Post-Completion OPT:

  1. Complete the mandatory "Optional Practical Training for F-1 Students" Canvas course (request to be added here) and submit your Last Quarter Statement Form (signed by your academic advisor) via email (for Post-OPT only). The Canvas course must be completed before requesting an OPT appointment. 
  2. Email your immigration advisor or isc@seattleu.edu to set up a virtual Zoom appointment for practical training. Please allow an hour for the appointment. Note: Same day appointments are not available.
  3. Fill out the OPT Request Form and email this to your immigration advisor at least 24 hours before your appointment. 
  4. Fill out pages 1-7 on Form I-765 to the best of your abilities, and email to your immigration advisor at least 24 hours before your appointment. This gives your immigration advisor time to carefully review your information, catch any errors, and then e-mail you back the corrections. You will also review this completed form together during the appointment. Some tips for filling out the I-765:
    • The form is a PDF fillable form, so we recommend typing in your answers to avoid USCIS misreading the form.
    • Print and sign in BLACK ink on page 4.
    • Part 1: Check box 1.a for "initial permission to accept employment" if you are applying for initial OPT.
    • Part 2, item 5.a.: We recommend typing in your current, local mailing address instead of shipping your documents to the ISC at this time. Be sure you are registered as a resident at this address, or your EAD card could have a failed delivery. Also, do not move from this address before you complete the application as the post office will not forward USCIS mail.
    • Part 2, item 13.a: If you already have a Social Security card, provide your SSN in item 13.b and skip sections 14 through 17.b on the I-765 form. If you need a social security card, fill out items 14 through 17.b.
    • Part 2, item 27: If you are applying for initial Post-Completion OPT, please write "c 3 B".
      • If you are applying for initial OPT, leave parts 28.a. through 28.c. blank.
    • For more instructions on how to fill out the I-765, see the official instructions from the USCIS website.
  5. From your home, you will need to prepare a packet of supporting documentation for your application. You will need to include (in this order):
  • Envelope or ziploc bag with two passport-size photos (put your full name and I-94 number on the back) and check/money order/cashier’s check of $410 paid to the order of the Department of Homeland Security. 
  • Fully completed original Form I-765, signed in black ink.
  • Form I-20 Requesting OPT (endorsement on page 2). Your immigration advisor will email this to you after your appointment. Please make sure you print the scanned document in color and sign above your name on page 1.
  • Printout of I-94 number available here. Click “Get Most Recent I-94”
  • Copy of F-1 Visa stamp 
  • Copy of Information page of your valid passport 
  • Copies of Form I-20s previously issued to you. Remember, you may not need all of them: check your F-1 Visa stamp and if it lists “Seattle University” then you may not need older I-20s unless you have had prior OPT or CPT under the same SEVIS ID number.
  • If you have had prior OPT, make sure you include a copy of the front and back of your prior Employment Authorization Document (EAD) along with the Form I-20 with the endorsement.

**For additional filing tips, visit USCIS's website for more information!


 STEM OPT Extension Process:

  1. Email your immigration advisor or isc@seattleu.edu to set up a virtual Zoom appointment for practical training. Please allow an hour for the appointment. Note: Same day appointments are not available.
  2. Fill out the OPT Request Form and email this to your immigration advisor at least 24 hours before your appointment.
  3. Fill out the Form I-983 (Training Plan) with your supervisor and email this to your immigration advisor at least 24 hours before your appointment. Do not fill out page 5 (you will complete that after 1 year).
  4. Fill out pages 1-7 on Form I-765 and email to your immigration advisor at least 24 hours before your appointment. This gives your immigration advisor time to carefully review your information, catch any errors, and then e-mail you back the corrections. Some tips for filling out the I-765 when filing for a STEM Extension:
    1. The form is a PDF fillable form, so we recommend typing in your answers to avoid USCIS misreading the form.
    2. Sign in BLACK ink on page 4.
    3. For item 27., enter "c 3 C". You must also have your employer's name as listed in E-Verify, and list your employer's E-Verify number. 
    4. Part 1: Check box 1.c for an extension of your current STEM OPT.
    5. Part 2, item 5.a.: We recommend typing in your current, local mailing address instead of shipping your documents to the ISC at this time. Be sure you are registered as a resident at this address, or your EAD card could have a failed delivery.
    6. Part 2, item 13.a: If you already have a Social Security card, provide your SSN in item 13.b and skip sections 14 through 17.b on the I-765 form. If you need a social security card, fill out items 14 through 17.b.
    7. Part 2, item 27: If you are applying for an extension of your current STEM OPT, please write "c 3 C".
      1. Be sure to fill out items 28.a. through 28.c. You MUST have your employer's E-Verify information to complete this part.
    8. For more instructions on how to fill out the I-765, see the official instructions from the USCIS website.
  5. From your home, you will need to prepare a packet of supporting documentation for your application. You will need to include (in this order):
  • Envelope or ziploc bag with two passport-size photos (put your full name and I-94 number on the back) and check/money order/cashier’s check of $410 paid to the order of the Department of Homeland Security. You may also pay by credit card if you want to use the form G-1145 but this is not encouraged.
  • Fully completed original Form I-765, signed in black ink.
  • Form I-20 Requesting OPT (endorsement on page 2). Your immigration advisor will email this to you after your appointment. Please make sure you print the scanned document in color and sign above your name on page 1.
  • Printout of I-94 number available here. Click “Get Most Recent I-94”
  • Copy of F-1 Visa stamp 
  • Copy of Information page of your valid passport 
  • Copies of Form I-20s previously issued to you.
  • Copy of the front and back of your prior Employment Authorization Document (EAD) along with the Form I-20 with the endorsement.
  • Copy of official transcript
  • Copy of official STEM degree