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5 Tips from a Career Coach: The International Student Job Search

Written by Erin Lee of the Career and Internship Center

We know that many of you are busy applying for summer internships or making post-graduation plans. The Career and Internship Center is here to help you navigate the job-search process. We’ve written a few tips below to help students both early in their studies and finishing their degrees.

  1. Gain Experience as Early as Possible:

    Take initiative in class projects, engage in RSOs, and/or secure an on-campus job to gain practical experience. In the U.S., employers don’t just care about your degree – they want to know how you’ve applied your knowledge.

  2. Understand How CPT and OPT work:

    It’s essential to know the logistics and timing of your work authorization (CPT and OPT) and be able to articulate them to potential employers. Start by watching instructional videos from ISS, then consult with an ISS advisor for further clarification.

  3. Pick Your Major with Career In Mind:

    Since CPT and OPT require your work to be related to your field of study, it’s crucial to align your major with your career goals. Research industries that are more receptive to international candidates, such as Business and Tech, to gauge your opportunities post-graduation. (source)

  4. Use Tools Optimized for International Students:

    While not all job search platforms cater to work authorization statuses, Handshake offers filters for “accepts OPT/CPT.” Additionally, Interstride provides a job search engine and expert-led webinars specifically for international students.

  5. Learn U.S. Job Search Best Practice:

    Familiarize yourself with U.S. job search norms, such as networking, resume optimization, and behavioral interviews.
    Seek guidance from a career coach at The Career & Internship Center for support at any stage of your career journey, through scheduled appointments or drop-in sessions.

Upcoming Events to Attend:

April 23
Top Mistakes by International Students

See Details

April 24
How to Use Interstride

See Details

April 25
Virtual Job & Internship Fair

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Highlighted Resources: