The Essentials of Job Searching for International Students

The job search process can be time consuming and present many challenges for international students. Having a quality resume, developing interview skills, building a network, and utilizing online resources are just some of the elements to conducting an effective job search. Career Services is committed to helping international students. International students should always consult with International Student Services before conducting a job search. Having an understanding of one’s immigration status and how it impacts employment is a critical component to being successful throughout this process.

Understanding Your Status

  • F-1 refers to individuals engaging in a full course of academic study in an accredited educational program. Students may be eligible for employment on or off-campus with certain restrictions.
  • J-1 refers to individuals participating in the Exchange Visitor Program. J-1 visitors may be eligible for employment on or off-campus with certain restrictions.
  • H-4 refers to spouses and children of H-1 workers. H-4 dependents are not eligible for any type of employment, on or off-campus.

Online Resources

Creating a Dialogue with Employers

Hi, my name is [your name]. I am an international student and I am very passionate about the field of [career field]. I know that through my research you are well respected with your company and in the field. I was wondering if I could have two minutes of your time? I do not want to talk with you about Curricular Practical Training, Optional Practical Training or the H1-B hiring process but I would like to ask you…

  1. How did you begin your career path?
  2. What skill sets should I begin to develop as an international student?
  3. How can I gain a better understanding of your organizational culture and the products and services you deliver?
  4. Does your company have any international partners?
  5. Is there another professional within your organization that could give me advice from the prospective of an international student?
  6. What advice would you have for me as an international student?
  7. May I call you again to gain additional advice about my career path?

Close strong by saying: "Thank you for taking the time to speak with me today. The advice you have given me is extremely helpful and I am going to put it into practice."

Congratulations, by talking with just one person you have successfully begun to build your network. Now, remember to follow up with this person in a few weeks.