Maintaining Your Legal Status While on OPT Workshop Video
All students on Post-Completion OPT (including Cap Gap and STEM extension students) are still considered to be in F-1 status for the period authorized and during the 60-day grace period afterwards.
F-1 regulations require that the email in the SEVIS database must be kept active at all times. During your program, this email is your Stanford email. After you graduate, please make sure in Axess that the email checked as "preferred" and "primary" is one that you will check often. You will have access to Axess throughout your OPT and STEM OPT period.
F-1 regulations require all students on Post-Completion OPT, Post-Completion STEM OPT, and in Cap-Gap to maintain accurate U.S. physical and mailing addresses as well as a 10-digit phone number. Please update this information directly through the SEVP Portal. Students MUST update new address information within 10 days of changing to a new address as required by law.
F-1 regulations require all students who are on Post-Completion OPT or Cap-Gap OPT to report their employment information within 10 days of any employment changes. Please update this information directly through the SEVP Portal.
Employment changes take effect approximately 24 hours after you have submitted them in the SEVP Portal. Once your changes have been made, please request a re-issuance of your current I-20: I-20 Reprint Request
F-1 regulations require all students who are on STEM OPT to report any changes in employment or personal information to Bechtel International Center within 10 days of those changes. STEM OPT students may view their employment information through the SEVP Portal but all updates must go through Bechtel International Center.
- Use the calculator to determine the STEM OPT reporting due dates
- STEM Report Participation
- Complete a validation report at the 6- and 18-month points in the STEM OPT Extension period. This can be completed through Bechtel Connect using the STEM Report Participation request. No I-983 is needed.
- Complete a self-evaluation form at the 12- and 24-month points in the STEM OPT Extension period describing the training progress. This form must be signed by the employer and submitted through Bechtel Connect using the STEM Report Participation request. The self-evaluation will be subject to DHS review and will be a required part of the student’s immigration (SEVIS) record.
- Complete a new training plan (I-983) and submit the STEM Employer Update request to the Bechtel International Center within 10 days of starting any new employment.
- If you end your employment or change visa status, you must also submit a final evaluation through Bechtel Connect using the STEM Employer Update request.
- Inform employers that they need to email firstname.lastname@example.org within 5 business days if the student has been terminated from, or otherwise leaves employment prior to the end of the authorized period of OPT.
Students must also report if they are starting a new degree program after a period of Post-Completion Practical Training. This can be at Stanford or at another U.S. institution.
Students must also report to Bechtel within 10 days if they have changed visa status or departed the U.S. permanently before the end of their Practical Training. This report will result in completion of the F1 SEVIS record.
Failure to report employment in a timely manner could result in violation of F-1 status and jeopardize future entries and employment in the US.