Students all over the world face many challenges daily. First, they have to manage their private lives and become independent. Second, they have to succeed in their studies. Third, it is necessary to find a way to combine college activity and personal interests. Finally, a student has to find a job that fits personal preferences and allows developing career and increasing salary in the future.
What about international students? Besides the above-mentioned problems, they have to cope with other matters like:
- work permits
- residential permits
- possible cultural, religious and even language barriers
How to plan a career when the head is busy with other stuff? This article gives hints for successful career planning for international students stage by stage:
Stage #1. Investigation of the Environment
Naturally, it happens during the first year at college. Freshmen meet new people, discover opportunities, and try to find out what inspires them.
How to do that right?
- Find a career advisor (it can be either a person at a college or online assistant)
- Get acquainted with both other international students and American students and tutors
- Look for some organizations or clubs which might be helpful
- Interview seniors to learn more about the chosen faculty
Stage #2. Getting Practice
This stage relates to sophomores who are not newcomers and already understand what they want to achieve. Now it is time to think about qualitative CV and resume. The Internet is full of templates which one can study. There are sections like college activity and experience. So, a student should think of what to write there. The information is not to be fake because the employer can check it easily. That is why it is time to volunteer, consider an internship (if the visa allows to have it), gain a position on campus, participate in various career fairs and alike events, and, of course, go on cooperating with people and, perhaps, find a company which is interested in a student’s skills.
Stage #3. Experience
The next step is to get experienced. It means that a student has to show that he or she is an expert and is capable of competing with other representatives of the chosen profession. On this stage, a junior creates a career plan and continues networking with those who can be useful.
Sometimes it is rather hard to do everything alone. The best option is to turn to a career advisor to discuss problematic points. If international students have no time for preparing their homework assignments, they have a great opportunity to contact a custom writing site with a wide range of professional academic services.
An international student should also take care of visa issues. It is necessary to visit the Global Engagement Office to see the perspective which a visa can offer. It concerns the available internship and part-time of-college job a person can deal with.
Stage #4. Almost Finish
Now an individual is aware of many important things and knows how most things work. It is high time to compose a competitive application. It does not matter whether a person is going to take a post-graduate program or search for a job in a foreign country. The main thing is that the application is to be precise, logical, solid, and of high quality.
Having reached this stage, an international student might:
- Consult the career advisor to see that the application is as it must be
- Make sure that visa is still valid and allows to work in the chosen foreign country
- Research to know exactly that the decision is right and that this job/program meets a person’s goals
- Keep in touch with people who might be helpful (students, professors, tutors, representatives of the company)
Stage #5. The Final Choice
This step is for graduates who know their direction and are ready to start their way of career development. They have worked hard to become good students and receive positive feedback and recommendation letter.
Each college offers different programs. They could be short and long, demanding, and less strict. This is the final step, and a person should be patient enough not to give up everything. It is important to be success-oriented and be ready to cope with difficulties. Problems sharpen management skills and a tough person up.
What to do?
- Take part in various conferences and meetings
- Make sure that you know about all the possible opportunities for your career development
- Ask questions about everything that troubles you
- Practice a lot as a volunteer or at some part-time job connected with your destination
- Never give up
Books to Come in Handy
When someone desires to succeed in a concrete life area (i.e. career), he or she should conduct research. There are many books which might help to plan career and achieve goals. ‘What Colour Is Your Parachute?’, ‘Work Your Way Around the World’, ‘201 Best Questions to Ask on Your Interview’, ‘Resumes for Dummies’, and ‘What Should I Do with My Life?’ belong to TOP best sources a student can use when planning a career path.
This list contains books full of smart suggestions, piece of advice, and clever solutions. They help to get rid of hesitations and become firm in one’s decision. They encourage for adventures and provide useful information for all students, and including international ones.
There is also a special book ‘Power Ties: The International Student’s Guide to Finding a Job in the United States’ by Dan Beaudry. It says that a degree is not enough to get a job in the United States. To become successful one should create a solid plan and follow it in order to become disciplined and get the desired role.
For more career advice, check out the career section here on Broke & Chic!