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Moved to US and cannot find a decent job?

This is what happened to me so that it can be a lesson for someone else. I am originally from Russia, moved here at the age of 29 so I already had 2 college degrees from my home country. When I would submit resumes to different places, I would receive an answer: Sorry, you are overqualified for this position. In the US big organizations cannot pay you less than what your degree is regardless of the experience.

My very first job was with Google - Russian Ad Quality Rater from home, they post these jobs on google.com. I had a contract with them for 1 year, they valued my Russian language knowledge and my experience and level of education. You can always start there, if they have open positions with your language.

My second job was at H and R Block - they usually have tax courses in the Fall and if you are doing great there, they might hire you. That is what happened to me. BUT it is a temporary/seasonal job.

My third job was insurance, it's fairly easy to pass the insurance test - Home/Property/Life/Health and you can apply for a position in an insurance company, they have thousands of openings.

With all of these jobs I felt like I was highly underpaid for what I was bringing in as an employee, so I thought may be I need to get American education, an american degree and this could open doors to better organizations.

A BIG and VERY EXPENSIVE mistake!!!!

Once I got done with my Masters Degree in Management and applied for a management position (having management experience from Russia), they told me that now I was even MORE overqualified and they couldn't hire me.

BE CAREFUL!

I am glad that now I finally figured it out and there were 2 ways for me to start making money in US outside just having a job which I couldn't get (a decent paying one and not temporary) - to start my own business, which I tried but when I saw how much capital I needed I gave up. My second option is working great for me.

hi what was your second option?

Thank you guys for your interest. I chose the hardest way but it turned out to be the most rewarding one - helps me pay my student loans plus more lol. I became an independent sales representative, work for myself.

Congrats

I have almost similar problem. In 2007, I graduated with a 2 year US degree in Computer Network Design but could not get a job. I returned to college and graduated with another 4 year degree(Computer Information Technology) in 2011. After sending out over 500 resumes, I'm still looking for a job to this day. Based on my observation, hiring here is based not only on qualification but other factors  such as race, country of national origin and stereo type. You would definitely not have this hard time finding  a good job if you were born here. At least you got some job. I haven't worked with my degrees.

The fact is that there's a lot of jobs in this country but your chances of getting it easily depends on the factors I mentioned above. I have been making a living running a small limousine business of mine.

100% agree with you. Even though they try to be non-discriminating, they kind of are. It's sad because they are so many people who could contribute to the economy.

Yes they do! But they try to be "Politically Correct " about everything. They pretend like they don't. I forgot to add that a friend of mine who's also a foreigner got a Masters in Computer Science but could not find a job to this day. He got his degree more than half a decade ago. As at the moment he's studying for his PHD to increase his chances of finding a job. In my field there's a stereo type that the Indians are very good IT Geeks and so they face less discrimination in finding a job in my field. I happen not to be Indian and so I'm still searching.

So how long have you had your business?

Since 2013. By the way, are you still in the US? I have the impression that you left the US or am I wrong?

mrdrew :

Yes they do! But they try to be "Politically Correct " about everything. They pretend like they don't. I forgot to add that a friend of mine who's also a foreigner got a Masters in Computer Science but could not find a job to this day. He got his degree more than half a decade ago. As at the moment he's studying for his PHD to increase his chances of finding a job. In my field there's a stereo type that the Indians are very good IT Geeks and so they face less discrimination in finding a job in my field. I happen not to be Indian and so I'm still searching.

If your friend has a MSCS and can't find a job, either he isn't looking too hard, doesn't have recent experience in the field, or maybe has unreasonable expectations.  There's plenty of jobs available to be had.  Getting a PhD won't necessarily improve his chances, unless he wants to teach at a large university or get a funded research position, which he'll need to pay for that degree :)

Romaniac

How about hundreds of resume with not so high expectation?

I agree with Romaniac on this. I moved to the US in 1998 and worked for 6 different companies in the engineering fields ever since. I haven't faced any discrimination, the fact that I am foreign born and have a accent may even help (thinking of all these stories about US-born workers losing their jobs to foreign visas holders...) I don't even have a US diploma/degree (in these fields). Something else must be at play here.

Did you guys try head hunter agencies, applying to open positions on large companies websites and optimized your online networking/profiles (LinkedIn, Facebook, etc...)?

mrdrew :

How about hundreds of resume with not so high expectation?

"not so high expectation" is pretty subjective and vague, so who knows what that's supposed to mean exactly :)  After sending "hundreds" of resumes with no results, one might question the quality of the resume. It likely needs to be revised.  Again, maybe qualifications are lacking, the cover page/letter is not well written (or missing) or some other factor is at play that's turning employers off.

When I got my Masters in Computer Science way back when (I have a Ph.D now), I had plenty of choices available to me.  Teaching in high schools/community colleges, government jobs, and firms of various sizes nationwide.  Also, I had headhunters contacting me regularly with opportunities via LinkedIn and Monster.com.  The only way I could claim to not be able to find a job is if I wanted way too much money, was unwilling to travel, or unwilling to learn a particular aspect of the job.  Fortunately, that was never the case.  However, I would say that having a well written resume is essential, along with how you present yourself and communicate.  Sure, it does help to have contacts; knowing people in an industry certainly can open doors to special opportunities.  I do know that according to recent labor statistics, there is a significant shortage of qualified people in the computer science/IT fields.  So again, if one has the qualifications, the jobs are there.

No, I am still in US. I live in MO.

aratliff :

No, I am still in US. I live in MO.

Please use the quote button so everyone can follow whose comment you are answering, or PM for side chat that is off topic  :thanks:

At certain point you will find a company which is owned from immigrant and will open a door for you. Also all sales positions will hire you to sale to people from your community. It is not easy, I know it very well!!!

Example: my son came from England with "cable installation" experience and some SISCO or how they call it certificate, Microsoft certificates. When was in England, I suggested that he should go and teach in Bulgarian language school at the embassy and create more connections. (his education from Bulgaria is preschool teacher-Bachelors) He did it. The results were perfect.

He came sponsored (green card) from me here, in Illinois, and I suggested same again. At first he didn't want, but staying at home was a lot more difficult, and he accepted finally. A company for alarm systems' installations also hired him (Polish owners).

For the New Year's Eve we went to a big party with people I know, and most of them professionals. So he met them, and few people from Bulgarian school, and few friends: all they recommended him to IT tech support company owned from a Bulgarian men.

Finally he found his way. I was happy, he was happy. He obtained few certificates there and worked 3 years total.

Now is working for a firm servicing varieties of clients in downtown Chicago, suburbs, and overseas.  The owner is from another closer to Bulgaria country.

I also had the idea for him to study, but he said, that certificates will do what he needs. End was right.

I see a quality my son also has: he can get  the max from an interview, and even more. If you don't have this in yourself, use an agency or independent recruiter.

I studied and spend 55k for a second degree. It helps me alot in my business, but didn't improve my opportunities to be hired. So, I use it in my business.

I am writing this story, because it is an example of the way this life is going. I hope it will be helpful. Giving to society (in general) always will give you a lot more back.

It's sad that you get all these qualifications e.g. Masters or PhDs but cannot get a decent well paid job. When I was desperate for a move to start a new life somewhere, I looked at job sites online like Indeed and research which place is hiring for my kind of profession. I also check out the type of visa available whilst waiting for my priority date to be current (Immigrant) Found several hospitals that are doing H1 visas for nurses then called each hospital's HR and inquired if they are currently hiring foreign nurses. Out of 16 hospitals I called, 2 have a positive response so I applied. Got my panel interview in June via Skype from the comforts of my bed😁 and got the job. By September, I had my visa interview with the US embassy in London and by November, I was in US celebrating thanksgiving with family and start a new chapter in my life. So persevere, be patient, hard work and never give up attitude will give you that opportunity to succeed.

romaniac :
aratliff :

No, I am still in US. I live in MO.

Please use the quote button so everyone can follow whose comment you are answering, or PM for side chat that is off topic  :thanks:

Thank you

The USA has many jobs to fill, but more of them are low-paying.  I had a wonderful 25 year career that paid well, but over 5 years ago, most companies were getting rid of their educated, higher paid and most experienced employees.  We were replaced by 20+ year olds with no degrees, no experience, and they were thrilled to be paid half of what we had been paid.  Management worked hard to figure out how to save money by having young inexperienced people working the desks.  We were all claim representatives for insurance companies or handling claims for large corporations, as employees of Third Party Administrators (TPA).  I handled all litigation.

Race and origin has nothing to do with it because it's all about money.  I am a blue eyed blonde who was born in the USA and some of my ancestors came over on the Mayflower.  Until the economy tanked, I was doing well.  Now I think I'm doing great if I find a job for $15 an hour.  This country values degrees in science, engineering, and specific IT jobs.  Resumes, cover letters, personal presentation, speech and writing with correct English wording, spelling and grammar are very important.  The USA is very over-populated so there are not enough jobs for everyone.  Only 1% of the people have money while most of us are in financial trouble of varying degrees.  Based on politics, the economy and crime, many of us are considering moving to other countries, so we have no idea why people want to move here FROM other countries!  Many are going back to their own countries if they will be safe there.

loool  , you are totally right

i'm going to study PhD in pharmacy this upcoming fall and i wasn't considering scholarships and financial aids cause i thought i'll be able to find a job easily and i'll be rich in an instant...  but thanks god there are people like you who share their stories and guide others ,,, because of that i applied and got a scholarship , this way, even if its a mistake, it won't cost me much .. thanks for sharing your story!

Thanks for this post. It's very enlightening.

Happy to see you're doing well.
I don't know what fields you had studied before moving to US but one thing I'm certan of is here, I'm American but prefer Rio de Janeiro,  in Northern California where Google, Ebay, and so many high tech companies have driven much of our State and National economies for so  long yet other parts of the country struggle I would recommend identifying where your area of expertise is most needed and live in such locations.
I'm from San Jose, largest city in Nor-Cal and center of silicon valley, and can say with confidence a tech degree will get you in the door and after the experience, will open more doors.
Management is always sought by companies as well and another aspect of this area is men to women ratio.
Many more men than women reside here and I've overheard on a few occasions my city referred to by young ladies as Man Jose.
If your experience at Google was positive you may want to reach out to them for full time, non contracted, career if you find yourself needing to change yet again.

And MrDrew? To begin in your chosen field you only need to be near Santa Clara county or in this area for a few years then perhaps work toward a position in a company that pays the wages here but allows you to work remotely.

My 11 years in Brasil owning my own business allowed me to meet great numbers of non Brazilians wanting what I had and all some needed was for me to explain how they, with technology, could continue current jobs but work online.

Of course all circumstances are difderent but an associate in Rio, an American, had a saying I'll never forget though quite simple;
If you want to catch fish then camp by the river!

I caught many.

Good luck all.

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