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H4, student and practical training?

H4, student and practical training?

Old Jul 31st 2002, 11:33 pm
  #1  
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Joined: May 2002
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Default H4, student and practical training?

Hi All,

I'm in the process of transfering my visa status from a derivative H visa to F1. I study on a graduate program, one year left- and want to take advantage of the practical training.
However the intl student advisor at my university says that I don't have to be on student visa to go to a proctical training upon graduation, i can stay on H derivative, study full time for 2 semesters and still go for the OPT...
Is he right or talking total nonsense?

Any help would be greatly appreciated!!
thanks
Ana
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Old Aug 2nd 2002, 10:20 pm
  #2  
Sylvia Ottemoel
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Default Re: H4, student and practical training?

akosmokus wrote:

    > I'm in the process of transfering my visa status from a derivative H visa to F1. I
    > study on a graduate program, one year left- and want to take advantage of the
    > practical training. However the intl student advisor at my university says that I
    > don't have to be on student visa to go to a proctical training upon graduation, i
    > can stay on H derivative, study full time for 2 semesters and still go for the
    > OPT... Is he right or talking total nonsense?

You are eligible for F-1 OPT under these conditions: (1) you are in F-1 status;
(2) you have completed an F-1 program, like an academic degree; (3) you "have
been lawfully enrolled on a full-time basis in a Service-approved college,
university, conservatory, or seminary for at least nine consecutive months."
That's from 8 CFR section
214.2(f)(10), available through http://www.ins.usdoj.gov/graphics/lawsregs/8cfr.htm.

The regulations do not require that you have held F-1 status for the full 9 months.
You could have completed part of those months in another legal status.

From what you have said, the international student adviser is wrong, and he will be
ruining the lives of people if he does not get informed.

However, you should know that you do not have to hold F-1 status until just before
graduation. Since it takes a few months from filing the I-765 to approval, you may
wish to hold F-1 status 3 or 4 months before graduation.

If you apply for a change of status from H-4 to F-1, you can't really control
how long it takes, and you might be taking a risk of not being in F-1 status
early enough.

You can always leave the U.S., obtain an F-1 visa stamp, and re-enter the U.S. in F-1
status immediately.
 

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