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Graduation

Congratulations! You are getting ready to graduate! Here are some topics to help you prepare for graduation. 
 
Click on the appropriate link to find out how to apply for graduation.

Undergraduate Graduation Planning: Graduation planning is here.

Master’s Graduation Planning: Graduation planning is here.

Doctoral Graduation Planning: Graduation planning is here.

Ceremony Information: Find the information about the graduation ceremony here.

Inviting Family: If you are planning to invite family and need a letter from our office for their visa interviews please drop by Garland 138 during office hours.
International students who will be participating in the UWM Commencement Ceremony may order a graduation sash with their home country’s flag. Orders will be accepted for a limited time each semester through a sign up request, which will be available below. Students who have applied for graduation will receive an email with the sash order dates and instructions. Sashes will be presented to students at the International Student End of Year Celebration and Graduation Party. The party will be advertised through email. 

As you prepare for your last semester of enrollment before graduation you may be eligible for less than full time enrollment and you may apply for Optional Practical Training (OPT). 

Your advisor must authorize less than full-time enrollment for your final semester.



You can apply for Optional Practical Training (OPT) 90 days prior to graduation. Please attend an OPT information session.



If you realize that you will not be able to finish AND your I-20 program end date is coming up, you can submit a Request for Extension. You will also need to submit Proof of Funding for the duration of the extension.

If you have not already applied for Optional Practical Training (OPT) and you have not requested a transfer, you have three options after graduation.

Transfer your SEVIS record: You may continue your education at UWM or at another school. Your SEVIS record must be transferred within 60 days of graduation AND prior to leaving the US, whichever comes first. If you are planning to attend another university, you must submit the F-1 SEVIS Transfer Out form and your admission letter. Once UWM has completed the transfer out, you should contact your new school to discuss issuance of a new I-20.



Apply for OPT: You may still apply for OPT. While we suggest that you apply for OPT 90 days prior to graduation, you may be able to up to 60 days after graduation. The application packet must be received at USCIS before the 60th day after graduation AND prior to leaving the country.



Leave the US: You have 60 days to settle your affairs and leave the US. Your SEVIS Record may be completed as soon as you leave. Keep in mind that you will not be able to transfer your SEVIS record or apply for OPT after you leave the US.