Day 1 CPT Universities: Is Fully Online Study Possible?

For international students in the U.S., Day 1 CPT universities offer the opportunity to work while studying. However, the legitimacy of these universities and their on-site class requirements often come under scrutiny.

When applying for the H1B visa, immigration officers assess any potential visa rule violations during the applicant's stay in the U.S. For instance, if a student resides on the West Coast but attends a university on the East Coast with minimal on-site requirements, it can raise red flags. Such discrepancies can lead to a Request for Evidence (RFE) notice, questioning the student's genuine intent behind the F1 visa application.

To avoid complications, it's vital to select a Day 1 CPT university that mandates regular on-site classes, similar to traditional universities. Students should ensure consistent attendance and maintain evidence of their presence in classes. In case of missed sessions due to valid reasons, it's crucial to inform the Designated School Official (DSO) promptly. Negligence can lead to expulsion, resulting in the loss of F1 status.

We recognize that balancing work and academics can be challenging, and the on-site attendance requirement plays a pivotal role in determining which Day 1 CPT university students opt for. We've compiled a list detailing the on-site requirements of the top 15 Day 1 CPT universities. This will enable you to select a university that aligns with your preferences, be it more or fewer in-person sessions.

Top 15 Day 1 CPT Universities and Their On-Site Requirements

Location Day 1 CPT Universities On-Site Requirement On-Site / Year
Stockton, CA Humphrey University 1 / semester 3 / year
Westminster, MD McDaniel College 1 / semester 3 / year
Chicago, IL; Tampa, FL National Louis University 1 / semester 3 / year
Henniker, NH New England College 1 / semester 3 / year
Allen Park, MI; Phoenix, AZ Trine University 1 / semester 3 / year
Williamsburg, KY; Florence, KY University of the Cumberlands 1 / semester 3 / year
Irvine, CA; Miami, FL Westcliff University 1 / semester or 1 / Week 3 / year
Overland Park, KS; Brookfield, WI; Phoenix, AZ Ottawa University 2 / semester 6 / year
 Jersey City, NJ Saint Peter's University 2 / semester 6 / year
Alhambra, CA CiAM 1 / 1-2 month(s) 6-12 / year
Harrisburg, PA Harrisburg University 3 / semester 9 / year
Santa Clara, CA ITU 1 / month 12 / year
 New Rochelle, NY Monroe College 1 / month 12 / year
Palo Alto, CA; Costa Mesa, CA Sofia University 1 / month 12 / year
Louisville, KY Sullivan University 2 / semester 12 / year
 Dallas, TX DBU bi-weekly 24 / year

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Frequently Asked Questions

Have Question? We are here to help

What are the most affordable schools?

West Coast

  • Lowest annual tuition - Humphreys University ($9,333/yr)

  • The cheapest CS program will be - Trine University ($9,343/yr)

  • Lowest payment per semester- Sofia University ($2,730/yr)

East Coast

  • The cheapest program will be - New England College ($8,976/yr)

>>> More options for Cheap Day 1 CPT Universities


 

Working load and minimum credits in Day 1 CPT programs

Compared with full-time masters, day 1 CPT programs give you the flexibility to work and study at the same time. The working load is usually 2-4 hours per week and the minimum credits you have to take every semester is 6 credits.

Can I finish the Day 1 CPT Program within 1 year?

Many master's-level courses can be completed within 1 year if you arrange your courses correctly. You'll need to talk to your advisors to determine how to expedite the process. We'd like to remind you that, as an F1 student, you can only select 1 fully online course per semester. When adding additional courses to your curriculum, be mindful of this, as failure to comply may result in accusations of being out of status (OOS) from USCIS.

Is it important to have a STEM day 1 CPT degree?

Yes and No.

STEM is highly valued in the U.S., and it's a strong addition to your resume and provides you with 3 years of OPT after graduating from a STEM program. However, if this is your second master's and you've already used OPT from your first one, you can't use OPT from another master's program. The right enrollment window or location or tuition…might carry more weight in your decision-making at this point. Choosing the right program and Day 1 CPT university is a complex process, book a free consultation with our expert to make it easier.

Which Day 1 CPT universities you don't recommend?
  • Day 1 CPT universities with no accreditation
  • Day 1 CPT universities often lack strong post-enrollment support. Admission isn't the problem, but securing timely CPT approval can be. We only work with and recommend schools that prioritize students, not just revenue.

  • Depending on your personal situation, our experts may eliminate certain schools as preferred choices for you. Connect our consultants for personalized advice.

 

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