Day 1 CPT provides an excellent chance for international students to obtain actual work experience in the United States while continuing their study. Students may make informed judgments and take advantage of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity if they grasp the legality, benefits, eligibility, risks, and application process of this program.
What exactly CPT is
The USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) provides international students the opportunity to study in the United States while also getting work permits for internships. This chance is open to them both throughout and after their academic journey. These internships provide students with significant practical work experience while also boosting their academic disciplines of study. For students studying on student visas in the United States, the USCIS offers two unique paths to job authorization: Curriculum Practical Training (CPT) and Optional Practical Training (OPT).
Under CPT international students can work while studying, where the permission is usually granted by their educational institution. This allows students to gain hands-on experience in their selected classes. OPT, on the other hand, provides post-graduation employment prospects that require USCIS authorization and permits students to engage in work related to their field of study.
What exactly Day 1 CPT is
“Day 1 CPT” or “Immediate CPT” is a provision in several master’s or doctorate programs in the United States. That allows international students to begin Curriculum Practical Training (CPT) immediately. This means that they can begin an internship or work immediately – typically from the first day of their program. This type of education is offered by institutions known as “Day 1 CPT Universities.” It is crucial to remember that this program is not offered in all universities and programs. If you want to take the benefits of Day 1 CPT program you should first thoroughly explore the concerned universities and their program policies, as eligibility for this program differs depending on these criteria. It is quite simple to find out whether the university or college that you have in mind provides this program by conducting an online research.
Is this program legal?
Day 1 CPT is entirely legal. This is why students with an F1 visa may participate in internships during their academic studies or after graduation, which is approved according to immigration requirements. This initiative aims to encourage students to gain job experience with the help of internships and they can also put their academic skills and knowledge to use. Individual institutions have the discretion to develop Day 1 CPT regulations, which include decisions on whether to allow off-campus CPT internships during the first year, as well as the option of full-time or part-time CPT internships. Each institution determines these policies on its own.
However, there are some prerequisites that the students need to bear in mind. To begin, students using CPT must maintain their full-time F1 student status and meet their universities’ attendance criteria. Enrolling in 6 to 9 credit hours of courses per semester (quarter) is usually the academic requirement for the graduate students, allowing them to keep up with their studies. Furthermore, the internship or labor that students do must be directly relevant to their topic of study. Finally, before they can legally begin working, students must submit a CPT application to their university and gain approval.
Which international students can benefit from this program?
Those whose OPT is close to expiration and H1-B visa has not been granted
If you have an OPT license which is about to expire and you are facing trouble in changing your status due to factors such as your employer’s unwillingness to sponsor an H-1B visa. The other reasons include loss of job, being unselected in the H-1B lottery, or unemployment during the grace period, or simply being unsure about what your next career move is going to be, then enrolling in a Day 1 CPT program is a very viable option. This permits you to keep your legitimate F1 status while learning new skills, continuing your internship/work, and applying for or processing your status change or job hunt within the USA.
H1-B visa holders who get laid off
If you are an H1B holder and have been laid off, Day 1 CPT is a feasible option, allowing them to maintain legal status in the United States by enrolling in an F1 student visa program. It provides a path for job advancement and skill development. The flexibility of these programs and practical emphasis can assist in minimizing job gaps and relieving financial constraints. It’s a strategic solution that corresponds with educational and career aspirations, allowing for repositioning in the US employment market.
F2 visa holders who want to study and get work experience in the country
Day 1 CPT allows F2 visa holders to study while also gaining practical experience. They can transition to an F1 student visa by enrolling in a Day 1 CPT program. This allows them to gain significant work experience directly relevant to their topic of study. Improving their employability and career prospects. It also corresponds with the idea of obtaining an American education while gaining practical work experience.
H 4 visa holders who don’t have an EAD card but want to start a career in the country
This program allows H4 holders to obtain work experience in their field in which they have studied, improving their employability and career prospects. The integration of Day 1 CPT with real-life work experiences makes it a smart choice for anyone looking to enter the United States job market. It does not just improve professional abilities but also broadens networking prospects, which may lead to future employment.
International professionals who want to work during their study curriculum
The day 1 CPT program benefits are an appealing alternative for international professionals. Who desire to work while studying in the United States. The practical focus of these programs ensures relevant work experience, which improves career possibilities. The adaptability of these programs allows for a healthy work-study balance, while networking opportunities open doors to future career advancement. Furthermore, the experience gained may improve eligibility for other employment-based visas, and working while studying can help to offset costs.
Eligibility and requirements of this program
- Status as a student: The student must be an international graduate enroll in a Master’s or Doctoral Degree program in the United States.
- Full-time Enrolment as a student: The student must be engage in a course of study full-time.
- Compliance with curriculum: The job obligation must be relevant to the academic curriculum of the students.
- Approval of CPT: Students should only begin internships or work after their CPT has been approve by the institution. And should adhere to the CPT start date listed on their I-20s.
Requirements of application for CPT
- Maintain a Good Academic Standing: Maintain a cumulative GPA of at least 3.0.
- Secure a Job Offer: A job offer is require while getting CPT authorization.
- Major Field of Study: Employment training is only permit in the student’s major field of study.
- Apply Before the Deadline: Most colleges have a CPT application deadline. Please try not to be late.
How to apply for this program?
- Before applying for jobs, students must have a work offer letter.
- Students must register for a CPT-required class, submit the CPT application by the school’s deadline, along with the offer letter and a CPT agreement between the school and the business (certain institutions may demand this).
- Wait for your college or university to approve the CPT application before receiving the new I-20. Students must wait until the CPT takes effect before beginning work.
- Pay attention to the renewal notification from school before the end of each semester. And apply for CPT renewal on time.
These are the details of application for availing. The Day 1 CPT benefits in the United States in a legal manner. You can attain good work experience which can kick-start your career in this country.