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What Every International Student Needs to Know Before Studying for a Masters in the USA

Studying for a Masters in the USA is indeed a great opportunity, but it also comes with a lot of challenges, especially for international students. With the steep tuition fees, high living costs, and cultural shock, many students find it hard to navigate through the US education system. However, if you are well-equipped with the right information and strategies, you can make the most out of your degree program and even secure a job offer after graduation. In this blog post, we’ll share some of the key things that every international student should know before enrolling in a Masters program in the USA.



OPT (Optional Practical Training) – OPT is a program that allows international students to work in the USA for up to 12 months after completing their studies. The good news is that you can apply for OPT up to 90 days before your completion date and start working immediately after you graduate. However, there are some criteria you need to meet to qualify for OPT, such as being enrolled in an accredited program and having maintained a full-time status for at least nine months. OPT is a great way to gain practical experience in your field of study and network with potential employers. For STEM programas OPT can be extended to 36 months.



CPT (Curricular Practical Training) – CPT is a program that allows international students to work in the USA while still pursuing their academic program. The work must be related to the student’s major or field of study, and it must be part of their curriculum. Unlike OPT, CPT requires an employment offer before they can apply. CPT is a great way to gain relevant work experience, earn extra income, and enhance your resume.

Work permit from day one – Some Masters programs in the USA offer international students a work permit from day one of their studies. This opportunity is available to students who are pursuing STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics) courses and meet certain criteria. . A work permit from day one can provide international students with invaluable experience and a head start in their career.



STEM COURSE – STEM courses have gained increasing popularity among international students in recent years due to the high demand for professionals in STEM-related fields. Pursuing a Masters in a STEM field offers numerous benefits, including high job security, high earning potential, and opportunities for career growth. Additionally, international students who graduate from a STEM program are eligible for a 24-month extension of their OPT period, giving them more time to gain work experience and secure a job offer.




Studying for a Masters in the USA as an international student can be both challenging and rewarding. To succeed in your academic and career goals, it is crucial to be aware of the available tools and resources that can help you along the way. By leveraging programs like OPT and CPT and pursuing STEM courses, you can gain valuable work experience, enhance your skills, and increase your chances of securing a job offer after graduation. Remember to do your research, seek advice from academic advisors and career coaches, and stay focused on your goals. With hard work and perseverance, you can make the most out of your Masters in the USA journey.


For more information about OPT, CPT watch the videos: