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What International Students and Employers +Need to Know about Employment

 International students can bring a wealth of beneficial knowledge, skills, and global perspectives to any workplace. They will have studied abroad, have international experience, and may speak multiple languages. However, international students face some unique challenges when seeking employment due to visa regulations, and cultural differences, and there may still be some language barriers. For this reason, it is essential to understand the legal requirements and best practices for international student employment to ensure international student success. 

Here are a few things to know about international student employment:

·      Visa Status

A student's visa status determines their eligibility to work. For international students studying in the United States, there are two main types of visas: F-1 and J-1. F-1 access allows international students to work on campus, while a J-1 visa permits international students to work off campus with certain restrictions. Depending on their visa status, international students may only be allowed to work a certain number of hours each week, and specific rules may apply.

Working on campus can be somewhat limiting. Hence, international students need to know the regulations that apply to them to plan accordingly and look for the right employment. Since the regulations on international student employment change from time to time, international students should keep a tab on the latest updates.

·      The Process of Gaining Employment as an International Student is Tedious

The process of obtaining a visa, completing paperwork, and finding an employer willing to hire an international student can be daunting. International students often have limited access to the resources, support networks, and career services that are available to domestic students. This process is also time-consuming; in most cases, there are no guarantees that the international student will find employment. Patience is of the essence, as the process of finding employment can take months. On top of that, colleges have limited positions for international students, and the competition for these spots is often high.

What International Students and Employers +Need to Know about Employment

·      Cultural Differences 

International student employment can present cultural differences for both potential employers and students. Employers need to recognize these cultural differences and create an inclusive workplace environment. On the other hand, international students should also be aware of cultural differences such as dress codes, communication styles, and business etiquette to succeed.

·      Networking 

Networking is a crucial component of international student employment success. Students must take advantage of the resources available on campuses, such as career centers or international student organizations. Technology is also playing an increasingly important role in networking by providing tools to connect international students and employers. Fortunately, many agencies are now available for international students to connect with potential employers. With regards to helpful information, a platform such as Interstride could be pretty resourceful.

·      Language Barriers 

Language barriers can be a significant obstacle to international student employment success. Language proficiency can be critical for international students when applying for jobs and interviews. Employers may also require international students to have language proficiency to understand instructions or perform specific job duties. Again, technology can come in handy in such cases, as international students can take advantage of online language courses and other resources to improve their language proficiency.

·      Resume Tips 

Employers may have different expectations when reading resumes from international student employment than domestic applicants. For example, international students should include international experience or skills such as studying abroad, living overseas, international internships, or international volunteer experience. Furthermore, international students should list any language proficiency or international awards they have received.

·      Employment Regulations 

In addition to visa regulations, international student employment is subject to US labor and wage laws. Employers must ensure that international students are paid the same wages as domestic applicants and comply with other labor laws. Students need to understand the host country's legal requirements, and employers should familiarize themselves with local, state, and federal regulations governing international student employment. 

How to Overcome the Common Challenges and Get a Job When Studying Abroad?

Here are some tips that can help international students seeking employment:

Use the Available Resources and Work on Yourself

As an international student, you can still navigate international student employment successfully by using the resources available.  Understand the cultural differences, Understand the regulations that may apply. Finally, hone your language proficiency. With proper preparation, international students can find great professional opportunities abroad. 

Seek Guidance and Leverage Technology

Seek guidance from international student organizations and career centers to connect with global employers. It will help if you also took advantage of technology such as online job and networking platforms, which offers opportunities from hundreds of multinational companies.

Be Resilient and Up to Date on the Job Market Trends 

While the competition for jobs may be high, don't give up — there are plenty of opportunities for those who look and stay on top of the latest job market trends. With research, resilience, creativity, and hard work,  you can land the perfect position to help pay for your studies abroad and get a jump start on your career.

Once you get your first job, build relationships, stay organized, have a positive attitude and be open to new experiences. You will gain knowledge that will help you further down the road should you decide to stay abroad, or return home. Good luck!

Author's Bio

Solomon Njoroge is a freelance writer with broad experience writing about Technology, Health and Fitness, E-commerce, International Business, Education and Careers, and other niches for various websites and publications. He is passionate about researching and writing content that enlightens readers, especially on leveraging technology and succeeding in the international arena.

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