Blog for Postdocs / Phds, National Interest Waiver, Extraordinary Ability

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F1 OPT with PhD in math working for a postdoc in a different department


I’m currently a PhD student in Math and I’m on F1 status. I’ve received a postdoc offer at another university and I’m planning to request an F1 OPT.

My problem is, the OPT requires my job to be ‘directly related’ to my major field of study. My major as listed in the I-20 is ‘Mathematics, General’, but my postdoc position will be in a group in a department of Chemical Engineering.

My specific duties are all related to my dissertation (deriving mathematical models, building computational algorithms). The problem is that the department name (Chemical Engineering) does not seem very related to my major as Mathematics.

Is it safe to work as a postdoc in the new department with F1 OPT?

Thank you very much for your time. I really appreciate your help.



3 Responses to F1 OPT with PhD in math working for a postdoc in a different department

    • Tigran Kalaydzhyan says:

      This should not be a problem. It is advised, however, that you obtain a signed letter from your future employer or your supervisor stating how your degree is related to the future work. You can provide this letter in case some questions arise in the process of obtaining the visa.

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