Some foreign students will be allowed to work in the United States on their student visas for as long as three years after graduating thanks to the new federal rule. This rule only applies to students studying science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM), requires them to attend accredited universities in order get the visa extension. Those who attend unaccredited schools can only stay in the U.S. for one year.
The passage of the Obama administration rule, which grants a 24-month work extension to international STEM students, is a boost both for foreign students and for the American universities that have been increasingly trying to recruit them.
The vast majority of foreign students pay full tuition, without relying on institutional scholarships or even federal student loans. They came to the United States in droves in 2015, growing at the fastest rate in 35 years. Most, especially those studying science and technology, came from China and India.
The work period is called “optional practical training,” or OPT, and it also gives students time to apply for a competitive H1-B visa. Previously, even students at schools that had not received a stamp of approval from the Education Department’s accrediting agencies could take advantage of the rule — a loophole that to the proliferation of unaccredited.
This policy will help the students to find better accredited college and ultimately improve the quality of education. This will also help the foreign employer to pick skilled Knowledge Workers.