I am student at SMU, Dallas from Fall 2010 with my H4 status.
I am planning to change my current H4 visa status to F-1 to be eligible for OPT in May 2012 when I complete my program.
There are some points here which I am little worried about and would like you seek answer from you.
Any F-1 student who has been continuously enrolled in full-time status for one full academic year (9 months) may apply for OPT.
It is highly recommended that a student mail the OPT application 120 days before the program completion date.
Does this mean that if I get F-1 approval by Fall 2011, I am eligible to apply for OPT before I complete my program in May 2012? I have to mail OPT application by Jan 2012 (120 days before) but at that time I may not have completed my 1 academic year being on F-1 as first requirement says. Is that OK?
Also, am I considered F-1 student as soon as I submit my F-1 status change application and get receipt for the same or I have to wait for approval? If yes, will I have to attend classes in Summer 2011 as F-1 student mandatorily?
Appreciate your help.