When looking for a potential employer, keep in mind that you have three things to sell: bilingual abilities, cultural background and professional experience. Your reception will be the most positive if you focus on companies who will utilize all three. Thus, it is best to concentrate on companies who have ties (offices, plants, subsidiaries) in your country of origin. These companies will often have an interest in you to work for them in this country, or to return to your native land after some training in the US.
It is less likely for a company with no ties to your country to hire you unless you have work experience in their industry. To sponsor you for permanent residence, the company usually must prove that there are no other qualified or willing US workers (citizen/permanent resident). Not all companies are willing to go through the paperwork unless there is a good chance of success. If you are seeking a position with one of these companies, be prepared to show how you are experienced and better qualified than a US citizen/permanent resident.
Because it will be more difficult for you to secure a position, we suggest that you begin your search earlier than most!
Sometimes companies give conflicting statements of policy to international students. This often occurs when the management personnel are not fully aware of the INS policies and their company’s policies. Networking is even more important to you than to a US citizen/permanent resident. Networking is simply making personal, written, or telephone contacts with relatives, friends and alumni in the US and back home who may be helpful to you in your search.
One of the most valuable sources here in the US is your embassy. Often foreign embassies maintain lists of contacts for employment. Call them!
We suggest that you form a supportive group/cooperative with other international students so that you can remain motivated and share ideas.
Communication skills are vital. How well do you speak and write English? If you have any doubt, ask someone you trust for an honest opinion. Consider taking additional English language course.
Check out the International Careers Consortium , a great site for international student information!