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CPT Information

Curricular Practical Training (CPT) is a type of off-campus work permission available to F-1 international students who are currently studying in an academic program and want to gain experience in their fields of study.  Students have to be full-time for 1 academic year before being eligible to apply for CPT and the employment has to be an integral part of the degree program.  CPT is not available after a student completes a degree program. 

If an F-1 student uses 12 months or more of full-time CPT at the same degree level, the student forfeits Optional Practical Training eligibility. (Use of full-time CPT in a prior degree at the same level would be included in the 12 month calculation.) Accrual of part-time CPT should not negatively affect eligibility for OPT. While there are no limitations on part-time CPT, high CPT usage can cause DHS to subject records to increased scrutiny when applying for OPT, visa applications, or other DHS benefits like H1-B petitions.

CPT is academic and not intended to be used for regular on-going off-campus work. Students should be mindful to keep all records of CPT and the academic work related to CPT, and how that employment is integral to the degree program. Students will need to retain copies of all previous CPT I-20s when applying later for OPT.

Apply for CPT