Data Science STEM OPT Designated Program: US F1 Visas

A STEM OPT eligible 30-credit MS in Data Science degree program.

A STEM-OPT Data Science Master's Degree from a Top-Ranked US University

What is Optional Practical Training (OPT) for F-1 Students?

UConn’s Master’s of Data Science degree is a science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) Designated Degree Program and is categorized by the National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES) within Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) Code 30.71 .

  • The optional practical training (OPT) for F-1 students provides the opportunity to gain temporary employment within the US, both during and after a student’s study within programs deemed as science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) related.
  • This designation allows for graduates of UConn’s MS in Data Science to apply for up to a 24-month STEM optional practical training (OPT) extension on an F1 visa. There are a number of STEM OPT opportunities concerning employment.

Connecting the World’s Future Data Scientists Directly with Industry Leaders

By becoming a part of the University of Connecticut’s Master’s in Data Science program, you’re joining one of the most cutting-edge data science graduate programs in the United States.

In this 11-month, full-time, in-person master’s degree program, you will gain the skills industry leaders say are needed by all successful data scientists working today in the U.S. and across the globe.

As you progress through the master’s program, you’ll develop advanced knowledge and proficiency in key areas of data science through real hands-on learning that can be applied in several professional roles.

You will participate in a team-based capstone project that incorporates material from all of your courses and introduces you to your potential future employer.

Benefits of UConn’s Data Science Master’s Program for International Students

  • You can complete the program in less than one year (11 months)
  • You get to work closely with peers in a cohort experience that optimizes group learning
  • You develop skills that industry-leading companies are seeking
  • You get direct access to companies who want to hire you
  • You will be eligible for F-1 and J-1 visa sponsorship, and Optional Practice Training (OPT)

Launch Your Data Science Career in the US

Talented individuals worldwide have long sought to be educated and employed in the United States. Global talent has spurred the development of new industries, jobs, and opportunities for Americans of all backgrounds, particularly in the STEM fields.

Students from all over the world recognize the employment opportunities a STEM education can provide due to the shortage of STEM professionals in the labor market.

According to the US Department of Labor's Bureau of Labor Statistics, STEM fields have the highest wages and fastest growth of any profession this century.
Data science is currently one of the most popular and in-demand fields in the United States. With more and more organizations realizing the power of big data, the demand for data scientists is also increasing.
Some examples of professional roles that are in dire need of filling include:

  • Data scientist
  • Data engineer
  • Data architect
  • Information technology specialist
  • Statistician
  • Business intelligence analyst
  • Data analyst
  • Data analytics manager
  • Chief information officer
  • Big data engineer

And these are just a few of the many positions that leading organizations seek in the US and abroad.

The Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that career opportunities in data science have grown by 650% since 2012. The sector is expected to create another 11.5 million jobs in the next decade.

Qualify for Optional Practical Training (OPT) for F-1 Students

UConn’s Master of Data Science degree is a science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) Designated Degree Program and is categorized by the National Center for Educational Statistics (NCES) within Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) Code 30.71.

If you are an international student who wishes to extend your US visa after graduation, you must have a STEM-designated title.

This program is eligible for the STEM OPT extension that affords certain F-1 graduate students an opportunity to apply for a 24-month extension of their post-completion optional practical training (OPT).

In addition to a 12-month Optional Practice Training (OPT) period, STEM-designated master's students may apply for a 24-month STEM extension. After graduating from UConn’s data science master's program, you can work in the United States without an H1-B visa for up to three years.


Learn More About OPT Visas, Job Requirements, and Visa Status

To learn more about the requirements for optional practical training (OPT) for F-1 students please visit the US Citizenship and Immigration Services website.