Panel helps international students find jobs

International students have to go through a different process to find employment after graduation, according to Ramanan Ganeshananthan, president of the International Student Council.

International students must jump through several hoops to find work in the United States. They have to navigate through immigration and visa laws and deal with a different system of employment than they may be used to.

“[For example], we don’t know whether the way we write rsums is the same as in our own countries,” Ganeshananthan said.

International students also face the unique challenges when dealing with employers.

“Not only do you have to compete with everybody else based on your merits on how well you’ve done, but you also have to convince the companies that…they can’t find somebody from the local job pool,” Ganeshananthan said.

Although employers don’t have to pay to have a students’ visa changed, “companies do have a lot of things to do in order to keep us here,” said Ana Marron, ISC vice president. “They have to prove to the government that, ‘Yes, we need them.'”

“There are so many rules and regulations for international students and it’s helpful to have someone to explain it to you,” he said.

To help guide the students through the process, the ISC has invited three panelists to discuss post-graduation options tonight at 7 p.m. in the Union Theatre.

Lorina Tester, non-resident alien employment coordinator for the U’s International Center, will explain immigration laws. Lisa Christensen, career services assistant director, will speak about job finding in the United States. Celeste Jorgensen, a human relations specialist for a pharmaceutical company, will provide an employer’s point of view.

Following the panelists’ presentations, the forum will open to questions from the audience.

“[The discussion] is trying to facilitate their lives. It’s not easy,” Marron said. “[We’re] just trying to help them, giving them some useful information and not to miss the deadline. You have to go back home if you do.”

For more information about the discussion or the ISC, visit their Web site at or call 581-8876.

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