Job search advice for your international students who want to work in the U.S. after graduation.October 19, 2011 at 12:19 pm | Posted in Intern Support | 2 Comments
Tags: H1B Sponsorship, H1B Visa, international students
By Jessica Noonan
Many of the international students who travel to the U.S. for continuing education hope to remain in the States after graduation to gain professional experience with an American company. Each year these students conduct their job searches as domestic students do: identifying desired positions and companies, crafting resumes and cover letters, attending career fairs, and hopefully networking. Because international students have the added challenge of requiring H1B visa sponsorship, they need to conduct a strategic job search that begins early, involves a lot of research and even more networking.
Here are some tips for helping your international students as they work to secure U.S. employment and the H1B:
- Pursue Internships. For international students with no relevant work experience, internships can play an important role in securing employment and H1B sponsorship. Offering professional experience and resume building opportunities, internships also help International students to experience American business techniques and business culture, internships provide opportunities for students to practice their English and help students to build a professional network. (**Students must check with their on-campus international student office, to learn about their eligibility to participate in an internship).
- Network! All job seekers encounter the challenge that nearly 80% of all jobs in the U.S. are part of the hidden job market. International students have the added challenge, that of these “hidden” positions, only a small portion hire International students. To gain access, International students should utilize Alumni networks and talk with classmates and colleagues who have been successful in their job search approaches. LinkedIn.com can be very helpful to students in identifying professionals for informational interviews.
- Identify Companies who’ve sponsored H1B visas in the past. This applies to both internships and after graduation jobs. In addition to information received through networking, students can tap into resources such as: http://www.immihelp.com/h1b-sponsoring-companies-database/. This free resource allows students to search for employers who’ve submitted H1B petitions by location, employer and/or job title. Students should also check out their on-campus job search sites and look through the lists of Career Fair participants (career centers will usually include this information when available).
- Become an H1B Expert. Students should be prepared to answer employers’ questions about the process. When the employer hears a student talk about the process confidently, it can increase their confidence in hiring the student, and undergoing the H1B process.