Broadening Horizons: Increased STEM OPT Eligibility for International Students in the United States
Good news for Indian students planning their higher studies in the United States! The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and the US Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) has announced the addition of the 8 new degrees to the list of postgraduate Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) OPT program. These new degrees are introduced to enhance the contribution of the students with F-1 status to fuel innovation, research, and support the economic growth in the US. Are you planning to study in the US? If YES, this article will help you understand why this news benefits you.
Highlights of Amendment and Benefits It Offers to Indian Students
Indian students planning to study in the US can now avail benefits of this policy amendment. Some of the major benefits of this amendment are listed below:
- The new list will extend the scope of the STEM OPT program to existing students and new students planning to pursue their majors in any field of study included in the new list.
- The students on an F-1 visa and pursuing master’s and doctoral degrees in the STEM subjects listed on the DHS website are eligible for a 24-month extension after completing their optical practical training (OPT).
- DHS regularly revises the policy manual guidelines from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS).
- The USCIS amends guidelines to encourage international students pursuing STEM programs to apply for lawful permanent H-1B status, as well as an employment-based green card.
- This new amendment would impact F-1 students seeking 24-month extension post-completion of OPT.
New fields added to STEM list
- Landscape Architecture
- Demography and Population Studies
- Composite Materials Technology/Technician
- Institutional Research
- Mechatronics, Robotics, and Automation Engineering Technology/Technician
- Linguistics and Computer Science
- Developmental and Adolescent Psychology
- Geospatial Intelligence
It is essential to stay informed about these changes, as they significantly enhance the opportunities for Indian students to pursue their higher studies and find employment in the US.
To learn more about this new development or to seek assistance on choosing the best STEM subject that meets your interest and resonates with your career aspiration, you can contact us at Collegepond. Our experts offer support and assistance throughout the entire process, right from the university selection to meeting the admissions criteria of public and private US universities. Book your FREE 1-1 counselling session now with our experts.