I consider this internship the first real working experience I have gained in the United States. While I worked as a campus ambassador for a small tech start-up last year, I was the only one working for that company on campus. This time I actually worked in a team with other co-employees. It felt for the first time that I was actually part of a working community. What I noticed, however, was that I was the only international student out of that group, and for the first time, I realized first hand how that always posed a struggle. First, getting the proper work authorization in order to start working was a hassle. I had to apply for a new addition to my student visa, I had to declare a major, and I had to apply for a social security number. All of these were huge processes in themselves and it took me weeks to manage to get all of these requirements in. As a result, I had to start later with my position, much later than the rest of my team. Additionally, when I received my first paycheck I had to open up my first bank account in the US, since I had only used my foreign credit card in the past. Ultimately, I realized that being international posed many personal challenges when working in the US.
- Blog 2: Acclimating to Your Position
- Blog 4: Overcoming Obstacles