10 Work and Study Jobs for International Students that are Easy to Get

Being an international student is an exciting adventure, but let’s be honest, it can also be expensive. Earning some income while you conquer your studies can be a game-changer. But where do you even begin the search for a job that fits your busy schedule and student visa restrictions? Fear not!


In this guide, we will look at 10 work and study jobs are generally easy for international students to get, allowing you to balance textbooks and paychecks like a pro.

10 Work and Study Jobs for International Students that are Easy to Get

Balancing studies with a part-time job can be a rewarding experience for international students. It provides financial support, valuable work experience, and a chance to integrate into the local culture. Here are 10 work and study jobs that are generally easy for international students to get:

On-Campus Opportunities:

1. Work-Study Programs (Average Salary: Minimum Wage – $15/hour): Many universities offer work-study programs that match students with on-campus jobs with flexible hours. Look for openings in libraries (typically $10-$12/hour), administrative offices ($12-$15/hour), student centers ($10-$13/hour), or cafeterias (minimum wage – $12/hour). These positions often prioritize student schedules and provide valuable work experience within the university environment.

2. Teaching Assistant/Tutor (Average Salary: $15-$20/hour): If you excel in a particular subject, consider becoming a teaching assistant (TA) or tutor. This allows you to utilize your knowledge while helping fellow students. Universities often have dedicated tutoring centers that hire student tutors, with pay ranging from $15-$20/hour depending on experience and subject area.

3. Research Assistant (Average Salary: $12-$18/hour): Professors often require research assistants for their ongoing projects. This can be a fantastic opportunity to gain valuable research experience relevant to your field of study, potentially leading to future research collaborations. Research assistant positions typically pay $12-$18/hour depending on the complexity of the project and your qualifications.

4. Student Ambassador (Average Salary: $10-$15/hour, sometimes volunteer): Universities often recruit international students as ambassadors to represent their institution at events or to new incoming students. This is a fantastic way to develop communication and interpersonal skills while promoting your university. Student ambassador positions can be paid or volunteer, with paid positions typically offering $10-$15/hour.

Off-Campus Opportunities:

5. Customer Service Representative (Average Salary: $10-$15/hour): Customer service positions are known for their flexible scheduling and opportunities to develop communication and problem-solving skills. Many call centers specifically hire multilingual representatives, with pay ranging from $10-$15/hour depending on experience and the company.

6. Retail Sales Associate (Average Salary: Minimum Wage – $12/hour): Retail stores often have flexible hours and are open to hiring international students with strong interpersonal skills. This allows you to develop salesmanship and customer service experience, typically earning minimum wage to $12/hour depending on the company and location.

7. Hospitality Industry (Average Salary: Minimum Wage – $15/hour + Tips): Restaurants, cafes, and hotels frequently require staff for various roles, from cashiers and servers (minimum wage – $15/hour + tips) to food runners and housekeepers (minimum wage – $12/hour). These positions often offer flexible hours and can be a great way to practice language skills in a fast-paced environment.

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8. Data Entry/Administrative Assistant (Average Salary: $12-$15/hour): Data entry and administrative assistant positions typically require strong computer skills and an eye for detail. These roles can be a good fit for students with a keen organizational mind, offering pay in the range of $12-$15/hour depending on experience and the complexity of the tasks.

Additional Options:

9. Freelance Work (Writing, Translation) (Variable Earnings): If you have strong writing or translation skills in your native language, you can find freelance work online. This offers maximum flexibility but requires excellent self-management skills. Earnings from freelance work can vary greatly depending on your skills, experience, and the platform you use.

10. Volunteering: Consider volunteering for a cause you care about. While not a paid position, volunteering allows you to gain valuable experience, develop new skills, and build your network while giving back to the community.

Even with “easy to get” jobs, put your best foot forward during the application process. By highlighting your skills and showcasing your eagerness to learn, you’ll increase your chances of landing a job that complements your studies and enriches your overall experience abroad.

Beyond the Basics: Maximizing Your your Options in Work and Study Jobs as International Students

While these ten jobs offer a solid foundation for international students seeking income alongside studies, there’s more to consider to maximize your work-study experience. Here are some additional tips:

  • Leverage Your Skills and Background: Don’t just apply for generic positions. Highlight your unique strengths in your resume and cover letter. For instance, if you’re an international business student with multilingual fluency, target customer service roles that cater to international clientele.
  • Network on Campus: Professors, career counselors, and student organization leaders can be valuable resources. Let them know you’re seeking work and explore opportunities within their networks.
  • Consider Internships: Many companies offer internship programs that provide valuable work experience directly related to your field of study. These positions might be unpaid or offer a stipend, but the experience on your resume can be invaluable.
  • Upskill and Reskill: Take advantage of free or low-cost workshops and online courses offered by your university or online platforms. Learning new skills like social media marketing or data analysis can make you a more attractive candidate.
  • Focus on Building Relationships: A positive attitude and strong work ethic can go a long way in building rapport with colleagues and supervisors. This can lead to recommendations, references, and potentially even future job opportunities within the company.

The work and study experience is not just about earning money. It’s about building a well-rounded skillset, gaining exposure to professional environments, and potentially discovering your career path. So, approach your job search strategically, make the most of every opportunity, and turn that part-time hustle into a springboard for your future success!

How to Apply for Work and Study Jobs for International Students

Now that you’re armed with a solid list of work-study options, let’s delve into the nitty-gritty of landing that perfect job:

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Understanding Your Eligibility:

  • Visa Restrictions: The first step is familiarizing yourself with the visa regulations in your host country regarding student work permits and working hours. International student offices at your university can be a great resource for this information.
  • On-Campus vs. Off-Campus: On-campus jobs are generally easier to secure as they often require minimal documentation compared to off-campus positions.

Crafting Your Application Arsenal:

  • Resume and Cover Letter: Tailor your resume and cover letter to each specific job application. Highlight relevant skills and experiences, emphasizing transferable skills gained through your academic background or volunteer work.
  • Proofread Meticulously: Typos and grammatical errors can be a red flag for employers. Proofread your application materials thoroughly before submitting them.

Targeting Your Search:

  • University Career Center: Most universities have career centers that offer resume writing workshops, interview preparation guidance, and job boards specifically for students, including international students. Utilize these resources to your advantage.
  • Online Job Boards: Explore online job boards like Indeed, Glassdoor, or company-specific career pages. Filter your search for positions that mention “flexible hours” or “student-friendly.”
  • Networking Magic: Don’t underestimate the power of networking. Attend campus events, connect with professors and classmates, and let your network know you’re looking for work. You might be surprised where a friendly conversation can lead.

The Interview Stage:

  • Research the Company: Before your interview, do your research on the company and the specific position you’re applying for. This demonstrates genuine interest and initiative.
  • Prepare Answers and Questions: Prepare for common interview questions like “Tell me about yourself” or “Why are you interested in this position?” Also, have questions prepared for the interviewer to show your curiosity and engagement.
  • Dress Professionally: First impressions matter! Dress professionally for your interview, even if the workplace itself has a casual dress code.

Additional Tips:

  • Be Patient and Persistent: Finding the perfect job might take some time. Don’t get discouraged if you don’t land the first position you apply for. Keep applying, refine your approach, and learn from each interview experience.
  • Embrace Cultural Differences: As an international student, you bring a unique perspective to the workplace. Embrace cultural differences and be open to learning from your colleagues.

By following these steps and showcasing your enthusiasm, skills, and cultural background, you’ll be well on your way to securing a rewarding work-study experience that complements your studies and propels you towards your future goals.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Let’s delve into some of the most common questions people ask:

Q: How many hours can I work as an international student?

A: This depends on your visa type and whether it’s a semester or break. Full-time work (over 40 hours/week) is typically not allowed during the academic semester for F-1 visa holders, but there are often no restrictions during breaks. Check with your international student office for details.

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Q: I don’t have perfect English, can I still find a work-study job?

A: Absolutely! Many jobs value multilingual skills. Customer service positions for international clientele or freelance translation work are great options. Focus on highlighting your communication skills and willingness to learn in your applications.

Q: How can I find work-study opportunities?

A: Utilize your university’s resources! Career centers offer job boards, interview prep, and resume writing workshops specifically for international students. Online job boards and company career pages can also be fruitful, filtering for “student-friendly” positions.

Q: What are some tips for excelling in a work-study job?

A: Be a reliable and dedicated employee. Show initiative, ask questions, and build positive relationships with colleagues. This can lead to recommendations and potentially future job opportunities within the company.

Q: Should I focus on just making money, or gaining experience?

A: Ideally, both! While income is important, your work-study experience can be valuable beyond the paycheck. Look for opportunities that allow you to develop new skills relevant to your field of study or future career aspirations.

Q: What if I don’t qualify for a work permit yet, are there other options?

A: Absolutely! Here are a few alternatives to explore:

  • Curricular Practical Training (CPT): This allows F-1 visa students to gain practical experience directly related to their field of study through internships. Speak with your academic advisor about CPT opportunities within your program.
  • Optional Practical Training (OPT): This program allows F-1 visa students to work full-time (20 hours or more per week) after graduation for up to 12 months (or 24 months in STEM fields).
  • Volunteer Work: Volunteering is a fantastic way to gain valuable experience, develop new skills, and build your network while giving back to the community. Look for volunteer opportunities at non-profit organizations or university departments aligned with your interests.
Q: Is it okay to negotiate my salary for a work-study job?

A: It depends on the position and company culture. For on-campus jobs, the pay might be predetermined. However, for off-campus positions, especially freelance work, negotiation can be appropriate. Research average salary ranges for similar jobs in your area beforehand to strengthen your position during negotiation.

Q: Can work-study experience help me after graduation?

A: Absolutely! Including your work-study experience on your resume demonstrates professionalism, transferable skills, and a strong work ethic. The connections you build during your work-study experience can also be valuable resources when searching for future employment opportunities.

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The work and study jobs that are generally easy to get can be a game-changer for international students. By leveraging the tips and resources provided, you can find a rewarding job that complements your studies, boosts your resume, and opens doors for future success. Remember, with a proactive approach, a touch of cultural awareness, and a commitment to excellence, you can turn your work and study experience into a springboard for a thriving career path.


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