Optional Practical Training (OPT)

OPT is a 12-month opportunity for F-1 Students to get work experience in the field they are studying.  There are two types of OPT: Pre-Completion OPT and Post-Completion OPT.  Employment authorization is granted by the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).  Application processing time for USCIS takes 45-90 days.  The application fee is $410.



  • Maintained lawful F-1 status
  • Has been lawfully enrolled on a full-time basis for one academic year
  • Employment is directly related to student’s major


Pre-Completion OPT 

This type of OPT is done while students are still pursuing their undergraduate degree at Marymount.  Students can work part-time (20 hours or less) during required semesters or full-time (20 hours or more) during school vacation periods.  Students can apply for OPT 90 days before requested start date.  It is not required for students to have a job when applying for pre-completion OPT, but it is highly recommended.  The amount of time used during pre-completion OPT takes away from the 12-month post-completion OPT.

Post-Completion OPT

This type of OPT is done after completing all degree requirements and students have officially graduated from Marymount Manhattan College.  While doing post-completion OPT, students must work full-time (20 hours or more). Students can apply for post-completion OPT 90 days before their program end date or 60 days after their program end date.  Students do not need a job to apply for post-completion OPT.  Students must complete their OPT 14 months after their program end date.


Here are some Frequently Asked Questions regarding Post-Completion OPT.  Please review and reach out to the International Student Services Coordinator with any questions.

How to apply?

If a student is interested in doing Pre-Completion or Post-Completion OPT, please review the OPT procedures and application and speak to the International Student Services Coordinator.


Maintaining Status while on OPT

  • Work only in your major field of study and within the dates that you have been authorized on your Employment Authorization Document (EAD).
  • Update your OPT Student Portal with the following information regarding jobs during OPT. The must be done every time there is a change/interruption in employment and within 10 days of the change.
    • Employer’s name
    • Employer’s address
    • Start date
    • End date
    • Job title
    • Job description
    • Amount of hours per week
    • Paid or unpaid (specific salary is not required)
  • Do not exceed more than 90 days of unemployment.
  • Update your OPT Student Portal of a change in address within 10 days of moving.
  • Obtain a travel signature from the International Student Services Coordinator every six months.