Most students who come to the US wonder how international students can find a job in the US, as they come in educational visa that comes with many restrictions. United States has always been the big ‘Land of Opportunities and Dreams,’ for many people around the world. Especially, the saying is true for students who land in this country to pursue higher studies and eventually career. International students have been successful in obtaining lucrative career opportunities in America. However, such job seekers do have to face more challenges compared to what the native students face.
Just like there are restrictions on how international students can study in the US, there are restrictions on how international students can find a job in the United States. Proper work authorization and suitable job for which the employer is prepared to sponsor the candidate are the necessities. International students on F-1 visa need to convert to OPT (Optional Practical Training) before they could join a company. It is essential that the job search is initiated at least six months prior to when the student must have a job. Although, many universities arrange for campus job fairs and interviews, the international students find their own employment.
Students have to groom themselves for their prospective employers. International students are not allowed to pursue just any career. It is essential that they find a job that uses the students’ course of study and experience as the foundation. They need to form good networks of professional and personal acquaintances. They should keenly look out for suitable job opportunities.
All the universities and colleges will have Career Development and Placement Departments. They will be able to guide the students on how international students can find a job in the country. The professional consultants in these departments will help the student with the following:
The International Students Department will be helpful with details regarding the paperwork and formalities. These services are offered to the students at no extra cost by the universities. The English Language Department courses (paid) can come in handy to those who need to polish their English Language skills for employment in the US.
Other than the visa and work authorizations, there are no other restrictions on how international students can find a job in the US. They need to have good grades, prepare to market themselves well, try to gain experience while studying through projects, volunteering activities and internships and be part of professional activities and organizations. These will help them in having the extra edge.