Moving to a new level of study provides eligibility for a new 12 months of practical training, see 8 CFR 214.2(f)(10). If the student leaves the US for more than a temporary absence (5 months) he would be available for a new year of OPT once he re-entered the US on a new F-1 visa for a new course of study. So, I believe you can yes.
I agree with my colleague.
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I, too, agree.
J Charles Ferrari Eng & Nishimura 213.622.2255 The statement above is general in nature and does not constitute legal advice, as not all the facts are known. You should retain an attorney to review all the facts specific to your case in order to receive advise specific to your case. The statement above does not create an attorney/client relationship. Answers on Avvo can only be general ones, as specific answers would require knowledge of all the facts. As such, they may or may not apply to the question.