International students in certain science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) fields will face new rules and regulations starting May 10th as part of the STEM Optional Practical Training (OPT) extension benefit. The Department of Homeland Security’s current policy allows a visa extension of 17 months after graduation. The new regulation increases the extension to 24 months, and adds a training plan and salary requirements, among other changes.
The new rule has the potential to impact over 700 students on F-1 visas through NC State, along with the faculty, staff and departments who intend to hire STEM graduates in their labs and offices. The Office of International Services is working in partnership with Human Resources’ International Employment Office to ensure a smooth implementation of the new rule.
Over 100 NC State students and recent graduates attended a live webinar on April 26th to learn about the regulations and engage in a question and answer session with Office of International Services staff. NC State faculty, staff or students can log-in to view the recorded webinar.
Another session is planned in the near future specifically for faculty and staff from a hiring perspective, but in the meantime please review information on properly completing a training plan. Additional information is available at the OIS website.