As part of successfully locating a position, familiarize yourself with the challenges employers face in hiring international students and clearly communicate pertinent information about your work eligibility to a potential employer. It is helpful to understand that there are basically three types of companies.
The first type of company is one that may have a policy of not filing for H-1B or hiring international students on Optional Practical Training. These companies rarely make exceptions, except for candidates with skills that are difficult to find, as these companies can hire others who do not have visa restrictions. You may be able to position yourself with such a company if your skills and experience are in an area in which employers have difficulty finding appropriate candidates and if the employer does not have other constraints that would preclude them from being able to hire an international student, such as federal contracts or security clearance needs. Otherwise, you may want to focus your research upon identifying the other two types of companies.
The second type of company is one that has hired international students in the past and may be open to evaluating you for an employment opportunity if you possess the right skills for the position. Many of the companies in this category have their own attorney available on retainer to work with employment visa applications. Establishing yourself as the candidate of choice for the company is critical to obtaining an offer, and this type of company is more likely to hire an international student. As company needs frequently change, one national list does not exist that will help you to quickly identify these companies. However, you can utilize some of the resources below to identify companies who have hired international students in the past. Networking with other international students, faculty and others may help you to locate appropriate companies.
The third type of company is one that may not be as familiar with hiring international students. Some of these companies may not have previously hired international students. However, they may consider hiring a student who presents well in an interview, especially if the student is the right candidate for the position and can articulate their visa status and employment options in an organized, well thought-out, understandable manner.
Given the information above, it is critical that you understand your visa status and how it impacts potential employment, along with any pertinent immigration-related deadlines that would affect employment options. Make an appointment with the International Programs Office. Also, make an appointment with Career Services to learn how to position yourself for companies of interest.
Utilizing all of your resources and the strategies above will help you to maximize your success in the job search. Make an appointment with Career Services to develop an individualized job search plan and discuss your job search strategy.