本帖最后由 tian16218408 于 2016-3-12 11:08 编辑 |
Following up on your petition on the opt stem regulation:
[size=13.3333px]A few months back, we sent an initial response to a petition you signed on the STEM Optional Practical Training (OPT) regulation. At the time, the rule in question was still in its proposal phase, to be commented on by the public and reviewed. But now, there's more to say.
[size=13.3333px]Today, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) published the final rule in the Federal Register to enhance the OPT program for international students in science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) fields. The enhancements to the OPT program will be effective on May 10, 2016. Here’s a quick look at what the final rule says:
[size=13.3333px]First off, all international students will remain eligible for an initial 12 months of OPT, regardless of their degree or field. However, under the new rule, STEM graduates will be able to extend their training period for an additional 24 months -- up from the existing 17-month extension!
[size=13.3333px]And, if the individual subsequently goes back to school and earns a second, more advanced STEM degree, he or she will be eligible to engage in a new period of practical training, including a second (and final) STEM OPT extension of 24 months.
[size=13.3333px]Additionally, the rule allows students who have recently completed non-STEM programs to get that 24-month extension if they previously earned a STEM degree from an accredited U.S. university. For example, an international student who earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering a few years ago and is just now completing an MBA program could be eligible for the full 36-month period of post-graduation on-the-job training, if such training is related to the STEM degree. Finally, the rule also bolsters protections for students and U.S. workers by creating safeguards to prevent student exploitation, among other reforms.
[size=13.3333px]These improvements and many others are focused on strengthening the educational experiences of international students studying in STEM fields in the United States by requiring stronger ties between their educational degrees and their practical training opportunities. You can read more details on the White House fact sheet, the DHS fact sheet, or the full rule text.
[size=13.3333px]The public spoke and DHS listened. The rule was open for public comment from October 19, 2015 to November 19, 2015, and DHS received 50,500 comments -- the most comments received in the Department’s history. Many of the comments were driven directly from the initial response we issued in October, and DHS considered all comments in preparing its final rule.
[size=13.3333px]In fact, most of the final rule's 300 hundred pages include a detailed discussion of how DHS responded to the public's comments -- agreeing with some, disagreeing with others -- which means your comments helped to improve the final rule in crucial ways.
[size=13.3333px]It also may be helpful for your community to know that starting today, the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) is launching a STEM OPT Help Hub on DHS’ Study in the States website to share resources for students, school officials, and employers. Among other things, these resources will help students find what they need to apply for STEM OPT extensions and continue their STEM education here in the United States.
[size=13.3333px]By strengthening the educational experiences of international students studying in STEM fields at U.S. universities, this rule constitutes an important step toward improving and modernizing our immigration system. And it keeps America competitive in the global economy. By helping immigrants get the best STEM education they can and fostering ongoing relationships with their universities, we can attract the most talented students, graduates, and entrepreneurs from around the world. And that’s good for all of us.
[size=13.3333px]Our universities train some of the world’s most talented students in STEM fields, but our broken immigration system often compels them to take their skills back to their home countries. We should welcome students from across the globe not only to study here, but to stay and contribute to our economy. That’s why President Obama continues to support Congressional action on commonsense immigration reform.
[size=13.3333px]You should feel proud that raising your voices helped to shape this rule, and we hope you’ll continue to participate on this platform.
[size=13.3333px]-- We the People Team