International Bootcamp prepares students to emerge into workforce

International students learned how to elevate their presence in person and online for future employment purposes by creating resumes, elevator pitches and forming responses to difficult interview questions during the International Bootcamp on Nov. 20.

Six presentations were given throughout the day to help students prepare the proper clothing and answers to interview questions and what to do if they need a work visa. Four Kent State alumni participated as panelists to share their experiences with trying to find a job as an international student.

Krittika Grau is a graduate student who helped start the bootcamp four years ago with Career Exploration and Development.

“When it comes to international students, they have to take extra steps,” Grau said. “They have to make sure they’re cleared by immigration, they need to be able to convince an employer that they should take a chance on them because it costs money to hire an international student.”

Students from other countries must obtain sponsorship for a work visa after a certain point in time. This is an investment that can only be made by their employer. 

International students can be apprehensive to convince a job to invest in their visa because local citizens don’t require any sort of startup cost.

Grau encouraged students to market themselves to the employer and convince them investing in their visa will benefit the company as it allows for the international student to stay in the United States which provides the company a long-term employee, instead of putting money into turnover rates after employees leave every few years.

Some students may be getting ready for their first job hunt. Biomedical graduate student Nashrah Ahmad said learning about the interviewing process boosted her confidence when it comes to acing an interview.

“I learned so much here today and I felt like it went really well,” Ahmad said. “I feel more prepared now because I’m going to start looking for jobs next semester before I graduate in 2020.”

Doreen Yuan, a senior marketing and fashion merchandising major, has co-presented projects for the International Bootcamp for two years and uses this event to direct students who are having difficulty finding a job.

“International students have the ability to adapt to different languages and cultures, so we want to teach students how to highlight that as they search for jobs,” Yuan said. “In doing that, we want them to know we have their backs.”

Contact Sydney Ford at [email protected].