New Proposal Extends Employment Opportunities for F-1 Visa Holders

Man working in the business room

Some major news for our Chinese and Indian friends studying in the US on F-1 visas:

The Department of Homeland Security is seeking approval to allow students to work up to 6 years in the US on their student visas. Specifically, this proposal would increase the time frame for OPT (Optional Practical Training) authorization for students working in STEM (science, technology, engineering, mathematics) fields.

This hopeful news comes as a welcome response to stories of tighter caps on H-1B visas. Author Sujeet Rajan expresses concerns that student workers could be exploited for lower wages under these provisions but remains optimistic that this increased access is a positive development overall. Read his detailed thoughts on the subject here.