This article was prepared with the assistance of ABIL, the Alliance of Business Immigration Lawyers, of which Loan Huynh, Fredrikson Immigration Department Chair, is a member.
The Department of Homeland Security (DHS) has amended the DHS STEM Designated Degree Program List by adding eight qualifying fields of study and a corresponding Department of Education Classification of Instructional Programs (CIP) code for each. No CIP codes from the existing list are being removed.
The eight added fields and CIP codes are:
- Landscape Architecture (04.0601)
- Institutional Research (13.0608)
- Mechatronics, Robotics, and Automation Engineering Technology/Technician (15.0407)
- Composite Materials Technology/Technician (15.0617)
- Linguistics and Computer Science (30.4801)
- Developmental and Adolescent Psychology (42.2710)
- Geospatial Intelligence (43.0407)
- Demography and Population Studies (45.0501)
The list is used to determine whether a degree obtained by certain F-1 nonimmigrant students following the completion of a program of study qualifies as a science, technology, engineering or mathematics (STEM) degree as determined by DHS, as required for the F–1 student to be eligible to apply for a 24-month extension of post-completion optional practical training (OPT).
DHS noted that "[i]nterested parties, including members of the public, may nominate a CIP code for inclusion on, or removal from, the STEM list." Nominations may be submitted by email to the SEVP Response Center at SEVP@ice.dhs.gov, with the subject line "Attention: STEM CIP Code Nomination."