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Regulation Update

Government regulations change frequently. Check this website periodically for any updates that may pertain to your visa status. The office of multicultural and international student services will inform international students through additional venues about any regulation updates.

Nonimmigrant aliens previously required by NSEERS to submit to special registration procedures and depart from specified ports are relieved of these obligations.
Effective April 28, 2011, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), through a notice in the Federal Register (FR), eliminated the requirement that nationals from the following countries register in the National Security Entry-Exit Registration System (NSEERS): Afghanistan, Algeria, Bahrain, Bangladesh, Egypt, Eritrea, Indonesia, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, North Korea, Oman, Pakistan, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates, and Yemen.

Fee Schedule Adjustments to Go into Effect November 23, 2010

60-day Extension of Period to Apply for OPT (Spring 2008)
Immigration regulations have extended the period to submit OPT applications for graduating students. A student may now submit an application for OPT to the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) during the 60-day grace period after the official graduation date. Although this period has been extended, Hampshire highly recommends that graduating students apply for OPT at least 90 days before their official graduation date or the proposed first date of employment. This allows for possible lengthy processing times of OPT applications by USCIS.

Extension of Work Authorization to Avoid the "Cap-Gap"(Spring 2008)
F-1 students on OPT who are maintaining their status and have a receipt notice for an H-1B change of status application with a start date of October 1st will have F-1 status and work authorization extended until the change of status to H-1B takes effect. The extension of status and OPT will automatically be terminated if the H-1B petition is rejected, denied, or withdrawn. This extension will apply to all students on OPT, not just those with STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) majors. A receipt notice from USCIS for the H-1B petition should be sufficient to show your employer.

17-month OPT Extension for Eligible Students with STEM Degrees (Spring 2008)
Students may be eligible for a 17-month extension of OPT authorization if they meet the following requirements:
*Received a degree in a STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) field from a U.S. institution (a list of STEM majors is available at
*Are currently working on the initial 12-month period of OPT
*Are working for a U.S. company that is registered with E-Verify employment verification system
*Are working in a job directly related to their major fields of study
*Have not accrued more than 90 days of unemployment on OPT
*Have not previously received a 17-month extension after receiving a STEM degree

Eligible students may apply for the 17-month extension at any time during the initial 12-month OPT period. Students whose extension applications are received by USCIS before the expiration date of their current OPT will be able to continue employment for 180 days or until the final decision is made on the extension, whichever comes first. The extension will begin the day after the initial post-completion OPT expires and will last 17 months, regardless of when the extension is approved. For details on applying for the OPT extension, please see an immigration Aavisor at ISSS.

Additional Reporting/Status Requirements for Students on OPT (Spring 2008)
As of April 8, 2008, an accumulation of more than 90 days of unemployment during the initial 12-month period of OPT will now be considered a violation of a student's F-1 status. The maximum period of unemployment increases to 120 days for those students who have been approved for the 17-month OPT extension.

In addition, students using their 12 months of post-completion OPT will be required to report the following information to Hampshire’s international student advisor:
*Change in address 
*Interruptions in employment

Students who have been approved for a 17-month OPT extension will be required to report the following within 10 days of any change (at the above Web links):
*Legal name
*Employer name
*Employer address
*Loss of employment

Additionally, students will be required to confirm with Hampshire’siInternational student advisor that the above information is correct every six months starting from the date that the extension begins until the F-1 status ends, or they change educational levels or transfer to another school.



Contact Us

Office of Multicultural & International Student Services
Lebron-Wiggins-Pran Cultural Center
Hampshire College
893 West Street
Amherst, MA 01002
Fax 413.559.6668

© 2014 Hampshire College 893 West Street Amherst, MA 01002 . 413.549.4600