While getting admission to a great course in a good college is one challenge, there is another hoop you need to jump through once you move to the U.S.- securing an internship.
When you go to the U.S. on an F1 visa, you're bound by certain restrictions when it comes to your internship. As a student on an F1 Visa, you can work for only 20 hours a week when college is in session. If you want to work off-campus, you need to take permission from the college authorities.
So, how do you go about securing an internship in the U.S. as a student from India? Here are some things that can stand you in good stead:
a) Figure out what you seek from your internship
An internship gives you practical experience. It helps to narrow down on something you're interested in and then apply for it. This saves you time and effort as your search will be more focused. Take stock of your interests, what you're good at, and what you want to learn. And then start applying.
b) Make a resume that stands out
A resume isn't just a laundry list of what you've done till now. Employers receive thousands, and yours will get lost in the deluge if it doesn't stand out. While there is no single approach to making a resume that stands out, you can do some research online and come up with your ideas. If you aim to stand out, you need to do something out of the ordinary.
c) Write an engaging cover letter
A cover letter is different from your resume. This is more personalized to the role you are seeking. It would help if you wrote about why you want the role and how your abilities are a good match for it. Here are some things to keep in mind:
i) If you've done any projects or part-time jobs related to the job you're applying for, mention that.
ii) Don't just write about what you can bring to the table, also write about what you want to learn. There is a lot for you to explore and learn as a student, so make sure you factor this in.
How do you go about finding an internship?
One of the easiest ways to do this is to speak to people in your college. You'll have seniors who have traversed the same path as you, and they are some of the best sources of information and contacts. You can sign up to be a part of more groups and activities in college where you can meet people. Here are some other ways to go about looking for an internship:
Linkedin: This is one of the most popular sites for you to look for internships. It might require you to write messages to a few people before you get a response - but that's part of the deal.
P.S. - We're organizing a special webinar to help you find the internship of your choice in the U.S. You can sign-up for it here.