F-1 STEM OPT Application Forms

Below please find the documents and forms needed to apply for F-1 STEM OPT. These resources are intended for use by Harvard F-1 students only.

If you have questions on the STEM application process, the quickest way to receive help is to use HIO Daily Virtual Drop-in Hours or Special STEM OPT Virtual Drop-in Hours.  

Documents to Submit to the HIO (Step 1):

HIO STEM OPT Request Form

This online form allows students to apply for the HIO STEM OPT Recommendation prior to submitting the STEM OPT application to USCIS.

STEM OPT Credit Card Payment (Touchnet)

For students applying for STEM OPT who would like to pay the $300 payment to Harvard University online via credit card.

STEM OPT I-983 Instructions

Instructions to complete the I-983 for the STEM OPT application to the HIO.

Instructions for STEM OPT Submission to USCIS (Step 2):

As a reminder, students applying for STEM OPT must be physically present in the U.S. to file their STEM OPT applications with USCIS.

USCIS STEM OPT Application Checklist

A checklist of all documents needed to submit to USCIS to apply for F-1 STEM OPT.

USCIS e-Filing STEM OPT Instructions

Guide to help students navigate the I-765 STEM OPT Application via the USCIS e-Filing system.

After Submitting your STEM OPT Application to USCIS

Instructions on maintaining your F-1 status while on STEM OPT.

STEM OPT Reporting Resource and Worksheet

A resource to assist with the STEM OPT reporting requirements. 

The HIO provides general guidance on your OPT/STEM OPT application based on information obtained from reliable sources and reflecting our years of experience in working with students. We make every attempt to ensure that we provide you with the most up to date information available. Any advice provided to you by our office (as well as the information in this packet) does not constitute legal advice, however. The OPT/STEM OPT application is a personal application for which you are responsible; the application preparation and USCIS case decision will vary depending on the facts at issue in your particular case. The HIO does its best to provide you with the most current guidance, but please be mindful that USCIS may change its interpretation of these policies, procedures, regulations, and eligibility requirements at any time. The HIO is not responsible for any errors or omissions, or for the results obtained from USCIS.