As we wrote in an earlier blog, if you’re a student hoping to transition from OPT to O-1, we are finding it is important for you to document your accomplishments before you became a student. However, once you are on your OPT, you should try to make the most of it and try to accumulate as many achievements in your field as you can. We recommend the following: applying for grants or artist residencies; giving readings; participating in exhibitions; becoming a member of professional organizations in your field; making sure you are credited for your roles be it in theater programs, exhibition catalogs, album covers, book acknowledgements; teaching; lecturing; endorsements.
Be proactive about getting your name out and make sure you get your name on everything. Carefully document all your achievements during this time. Take photographs and keep a record of invoices and contracts.
Please do have a consultation with our attorney as early on in the process as you can as she can give you advice that’s more specific to your field.