Tag Archives: resume

How to Get Your H-1B Visa Indirectly via the F-1 visa?

The H-1B visa is possibly the most controversial visa in the entire US Immigration system and certainly receives the most press coverage. We have tried to help all of you via our posts and answering your comments and emails by trying to provide resources so you can find a employer sponsor and get your H-1B visa.

We have looked at the past year’s Top 100 H-1B visa employers as well as more basic topics like like creating the best US resume format and preparing for US H-1B Job Interviews.

We will look at another avenue to consider to getting your H-1B visa which of tens of thousands purse each year to great success making it the most common and thus pre-cursor to get a H-1B visa.

There are actually two ways we will eventually discuss as you see below but for now we will look at the F-1 visa route

  1. via F-1 visa
  2. via J-1 visa

The F-1 Visa:
This visa is a full time student visa and used mostly by International students from all over the world to study at US college and universities for their undergraduate, masters/graduate and/or PHD programs. I will cover more on the F-1 visa in future posts including all its benefits and pitfalls, requirements as well as how to apply, etc.

It is very popular and historically has been the main way people from all over the world have been able to transfer from student to the H-1B visa. So in essence it is already used extensively as a stepping stone for Internationals to become full working professionals in the United States.

Of course this is not a cheap option, as outside of outstanding students and those in many PHD programs, chances are you will have to pay for your education in full. As you may be aware, college tuition fees in the US are not cheap.

Now it is very difficult for International students to get loans in the US, however Sallie Mae does have a program called Tuition Pay allowing to break up payments evenly over the months of a semester.

Well short of having a source of funds to be able to attend one of the prestigious universities in the US like the Ivy League Group including Harvard or Yale, you can attend state universities where the tuition is much lower (although still probably expensive by global standards).

The tuition at state universities is subsidized by the Government and is even lower for residents of that state (normally you have to live in a state for 1 year to qualify for this so after a year of study your fees may even go down depending on the regulations of that state and university regarding foreign students).

The fees are generally charged by the amount of credits each subjects gives you and of course you need a certain amount. Without going into too much detail about this in this post, you are looking at up to $5,000 per semester for undergraduates but this depends on a large amount of factors and could vary. Here is a link from Sallie Mae to help you estimate costs. Of course Masters programs can be more but is generally only half the length of a undergraduate degree (2 years vs. 4 years)

After all that what the F-1 visa does give you is the ability to do 4 things which greatly enhance your chances of finding an employer to sponsor your H-1B visa easily.

  1. CPT – Curricullum Practical Training which allows you to work for credits to your degree (don’t do more than 12 months as it makes you ineligible for OPT)
  2. OPT – Occupational Practical Training which is 1 year for undergraduates and now possibly up to 2 years for Masters or Higher Degree Holders to work at a US company. This is usually done by a student following graduation
  3. Network via University, Alumni and Above Work Training Programs – The contacts you meet will be invaluable probably for the rest of your life and you will have so much help, support and advantage compared to the average E3 visa hopeful
  4. Time – This may be the most important advantage as say you do a 4 year degree in the US or even transfer here for a part of your degree, you have so much time to do practical things like apply for jobs, build resumes and attend job interviews.


This is the almost the best option in your quest to obtain your H1B visa as it is the path most often used as a foreigner already has established contacts in the US and time to navigate the Immigration system and US job market within the US.


Creating a US Style Resume for Job Applications

I thought I would touch in a short note about resumes. As many sites that also charge for other free information I have shared in this blog also state as part of their service they will help with resumes as well to ensure it is in a US format which can be different from other International countries.

To be honest, in this global world, where labor is constantly travelling all over the place, differences between resumes (language aside) is becoming more and more homogenized the world over. So the advice I will share to help with your job applications to get your E3 Visa, H1B Visa or J1 Visa may be what you are already doing.

Additionally, the job sites I recommended like Monster.com and LinkedIn.com as well as others like Career Builder and Yahoo Hot Jobs all have extensive sections on this so it hardly a trade secret.

The truth is probably these days, that you have to go beyond your resume format to obtain a job offer and eventually get your E3 or H1B visa by really standing out from the pack. By this I mean it is the presentation, extra efforts, interview performance which is basically whole package you offer during all stages of the application process that will get you that job offer.

However the resume is an important pre-requisite so I will try and outline the major points of the US style resume in my opinion. Of course depending on the profession, some factors may vary but this will be the standard to cover most types of industries I believe.

Just in case you were wondering, my resume was very much in an Australian style and I actually had a sit down session over breakfast with a VP of a media company, who basically tore my whole things to shreds. Then he gave me section by section pointers to change it to a US Style Resume.

I can also confirm my initial response rate from prospective employers improved dramatically following this complete re-work.

General Points to Consider

  • Keep the length to 2 pages or less
  • Put it in the format of reverse chronological order (i.e. job experience then education then extra information)
  • Try and put all your contact details in the header area as not to waste space
  • Consider adding a business/personal objective of about 1-2 sentences just prior to work experience. Also if you do add this, try and tailor it to the position to which you are applying
  • You can also either in this initial section or in a cover letter state when you are available to work
  • In work experience put your most recent experience first by putting company name & location, job title, dates of service, the job description in bullet form (ensure this straight to the point like “managed $10 million marketing budget for clients across all channels”)
  • In education state the institution and all relevant qualification achieved as well as year of graduation. If mini description is required to explain qualification then add here as well
  • Consider putting the web address of institution if it is foreign to the US so they can research
  • In next part you can spend a little bit of space on additional skills, achievements/awards and personal interests however this is definitely not the focus of the resume so should be kept brief
  • The second last thing is to put reference check names and their relevant contact details. US companies have a tendency to check these during the job offer stage of the application process but of course that can vary.
  • The last party you can put a brief note on your Visa Status, I will paste below exactly what I put there for the E3 visa but of course you can substitute for H1B or any other visa as well.

As an Australian I am eligible for the E3 visa which is specifically for Australian professionals working for US employers. (This visa works similarly to the Canadian TN Visa and requires 1 form to be completed being the Labor Condition Application (LCA –US State Dept. Info)

I hope all this information has been of some help in your quest for an E3, J1 or H1B visa and that soon your plans and hard work applying for jobs in the US will get you many call backs, interviews and hopefully job offers to choose from!