The University of Texas at Austin MSF program is incredibly popular and growing over the years. The program is a target for anyone wanting to work in Texas and obviously a nationally respected institution. All of this has helped increase demand and interest in the Masters in Finance program they offer, both domestically and internationally.
As interest in the program continues to grow the University has made the wise decision to pursue STEM certification. Over the last couple of years I have seen this increase with a number of schools seeking and achieving their certification. What this does is allow students (internationals) who come to the US to student to stay a total of 3 years on their OPT (I believe studying at a STEM program gives you a 17 month OPT extension – total of 3 years). This is a game changer for international students as it has become increasingly difficult to get sponsored from employers.
For domestic students, this isn’t very important, but for an international student comparing programs, this is night and day. I think this a smart move by the University of Texas and one that will make them competitive with the other programs that have it and the program of choice when comparing the school against one that is non-STEM certified.
As of July 10th, it has been confirmed that the UT Austin MSF program is now officially STEM certified. I would imagine that applicants for this upcoming class will be part of this and able to extend their OPT status as a result. As more and more programs gain this huge positive for international applicants, the schools who do not have this will become increasingly uncompetitive.
More to follow.
Here is a link to the University of Texas at Austin Masters in Finance Program