We have successfully held our first photo contest! Thank you to all of our students who submitted their wonderful images. This fall, we are going to have a “Best of the Summer” contest. The theme of this contest is “Spartan Spirit”. We are looking for photos of you and your friends having fun around campus, and want to see you showing your “Spartan Spirit” in your home country! It would be great to see photos of your hometown where you live, too. We don’t often get to see these types of photos and we would love to get to know our students even better.
Posted in Other postings, Student Perspectives | Tagged oiss photo contest | Leave a Comment »
Congratulations to the MSU class of 2013! Now that graduation is over, it’s easy to let things slip your mind. Here’s the sequel to the blog entry Graduation Checklist for International Students to help prepare you for departure.
If you plan to remain in the U.S. and seek employment, make sure you have applied for Optional Practical Training (OPT). http://oiss.isp.msu.edu/students/employ/ OISS stays open throughout the summer with their regular walk-in hours (except for Wednesdays). They are from 1-3 p.m. in Room 105 of the International Center.
Complete Destination Survey
- MSU requests that all graduating students take the Destination Survey in order to provide department career coordinators with access to data regarding career placement. Taking it will help supply MSU with statistics regarding how well students are obtaining employment. https://www.egr.msu.edu/destination/survey/
Leave a forwarding address with the campus mail center, alumni center, and a local post office.
- If you aren’t sure where you’ll be during or after the summer, have your mail forwarded to an address where you know your private information will be safe. The sooner these arrangements are made, the better.
Get contact information for your references
- It’s likely that you’ll need professional and academic references for multiple purposes once you graduate. Be sure to coordinate with the individuals that you’ve selected as your references before you leave so that you have their contact information, you have knowledge of their availability, and that they’re aware you may be providing their name and contact information.
Pay off any holds or fines (library,parking, etc.)
- Various holds and fines on your student account can keep you from officially graduating from MSU. Make sure to get these taken care of as soon as you can.
Request a few copies of your official transcript
- This will save you the trouble of having to worry about it later (when you may need it quickly!). Official transcripts are necessary for applying to academic programs as well as some jobs.
Call and cancel all of your accounts and subscriptions including:
- Cell phone
- Cable TV
- Car Insurance
Contact shipping or storage companies to ship/store your personal items
Make arrangements with your bank to close your account(s).
Dena Elian is an International Relations Senior at MSU’s James Madison College who will be graduating on Saturday. Currently, she is the Experiential Learning Intern at OISS, but will sadly be leaving once the semester ends. She is grateful for being given the incredible opportunity to be a part of the OISS this year.
Posted in Other postings | Tagged Account, Bank Account, Car Insurance, Cell Phone, Destination Survey, east lansing, Electric, graduation, graduation checklist, Internet, library, Magazines, mail, msu, Newspapers, Official Transcript, Professional References, Shipping, Subscription | Leave a Comment »
Asking “What are your plans after graduation?” may be the most frightening question that you can haunt a soon-to-be graduate with. For many, a response has already been formulated as they have secured the next step— often a job or graduate school. As for those who are scrambling to find paid work in a slowly mending economy – both in and outside the U.S. – it often seems as though the hunt for employment will never end. To help ease the process, here’s a list of tips and suggestions that are sure to bring you better luck.
Apply for Optional Practical Training (OPT) ASAP
- F-1 students are required by law to have OPT approval before working in the U.S. after graduation. Students are encouraged to apply for OPT 3 months before they graduate as it could take up to 90 days for them to be approved. OPT information and applications are available on our website: OPT INFO
- When is the latest you can apply? Your OPT application needs to be received by United States Citizenship and Immigration Services (USCIS) within 60 days of your program completion.
Have your most up-to-date resume and cover letter reviewed
- Writing a resume and cover letter shouldn’t be a difficult task—especially on MSU’s campus. There are numerous workshops, events, and advisors that are there to answer your questions and give suggestions so that you can be prepared with a resume and cover letter that meet employers’ standards. It’s extremely important that these documents are well written because they are an employer’s first impression of you and will likely determine whether or not you’ll be selected for an interview. If you aren’t sure how to get started, check out our blog entry entitled “How to Write a Resume”.
- If you already have a resume and cover letter, you can make an appointment with any career advisor on campus so that they can give it a look and help you to make necessary corrections and suggestions. http://careernetwork.msu.edu/advising
Make an account on MySpartanCareer.com
- Myspartancareer.com is a highly useful job and internship posting website brought to you by MSU Career Services. It’s available exclusively to Spartans and allows you to search and apply for jobs and internships both on- and off-campus. Having a MySpartanCareer account also gives you access to information about career fairs and workshops among other useful resources. http://careernetwork.msu.edu/my-spartan-career
Intern somewhere you’d be interested in working
- Internships are some of the best ways for students to familiarize themselves with professional environments that they may be considering in their long-term career goals. In addition to providing you with practical hands-on experience, internships are key when it comes to professional networking. When seeking to fill open positions, companies and organizations often look to current and former interns—individuals that they’ve already worked with and can trust. Also, the expanded professional circle that you develop will allow you to get in touch with other professionals. Having and keeping in touch with these contacts will come in handy throughout your job search.
Take advantage of networking opportunities offered at MSU
- Career Fairs, workshops, and even events that welcome both current students and alumni are all perfect opportunities to network with individuals who have already begun their careers. It’s important to ask questions about how they got started in their career and what path they had to take in order to achieve the goals that they’ve accomplished today; networking should always be a learning experience. Students should also make the effort to build connections with faculty members such as advisers and professors.
Check companies’ and organizations’ websites for vacancy listings
- There are a number of popular job posting websites out there that are commonly used by college students and other career seekers. Keep in mind, though, how many other people are searching for jobs on the same sites as well as how many employers don’t post vacancies on them. By searching companies’ and organizations’ websites, you’re getting information directly from the source and possibly before other job seekers.
Schedule a “mock interview”
- Schedule an appointment with a career advisor to hold a “mock interview.” Interviews can be a nerve wracking experience and the only way to get comfortable with them is to practice. Rather than practicing through real interviews, take the opportunity to attend an interview that won’t count against you. This way, you’ve got nothing to lose. More importantly, career advisors can give you feedback on what you’re doing well and how you should improve—tips that may help you land a job in the long run.
- In many fields, a Bachelor’s degree may not be competitive enough to break into today’s demanding job market. If you want employers to be impressed with your resume, you may want to consider pursuing a graduate degree or certification. One helpful way to find a graduate program that you feel would be a good fit for your career aspirations is to find an advanced position that you would eventually like to work up to and take a look at what the education requirements and experience qualifications are.
*Picture found at empowernetwork.com
Dena Elian is an International Relations Senior at MSU’s James Madison College. Currently, she is the Experiential Learning Intern at OISS. Her campus activities include involvement with organizations that promote Middle Eastern politics and Human Rights. She accepted her first job offer while writing this blog post.
Posted in Career opportunities / Experiential Learning, Other postings | Tagged Bachelor's Degree, Career Advisor, Career Fairs, Career Workshops, Cover Letter, Economy, Graduate Certificate, Graduate Degree, Graduate School, graduation, How to Write a Resume, internships, Job Market, Job Search Engine, Job Vacancy, jobs, Mock Interview, msu, MSU Career Services, myspartancareer, Networking, OPT, resume, United States Citizenship and Immigration Services, USCIS | Leave a Comment »
“I found I could say things with color and shapes that I couldn’t say any other way – things I had no words for.” -Georgia O’Keeffe
On March 22nd, 2013, the 5th annual One World, Many Stories event took place at Red Cedar Elementary School bringing together over 200 students, families and community members. The event was highlighted by the fact that Grammy-award winner, Barbara Bailey Hutchison was present to sing and reveal the mural that she envisioned and produced alongside the 300 students of Red Cedar.
This year, the One World; Many Stories committee chose to highlight Alain Serres’ book, I Have the Right to Be a Child, focused on the concept of human rights, specifically those outlined in the United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child. The book was distributed to each student at Red Cedar and Ms. Hutchison spent a week at the school as an artist in residence to create a piece that signified the sentiment of the story. The piece used a grid system employed by one of America’s premier artists, Chuck Close, having every single student complete one of the 300 squares used to create a large mural. Her idea was themed off of the idea that, if we all work together we can create something wonderful.
Could there be a more perfect theme for Red Cedar?! They have created something wonderful…a supportive environment that fosters school and community connectedness. I have to say that that the words of Georgia O’Keefe rang with absolute truth as that mural was unveiled. There didn’t seem to be words that could describe the inspiring atmosphere that was present during its unveiling. Check out the excitement here: http://www.kaltura.com/index.php/kwidget/cache_st/1332181749/wid/_599132/uiconf_id/7796271/entry_id/1_rbfnxxhv
This mural will be on permanent display at the East Lansing Public Library…make sure to go check it out!
This whole project could not have been without the help of our partners! A BIG thank you to, East Lansing Public Library, Target, MSU Family Resource Center, MSU Residence Education and Housing Services, and MSU Center for Language Teaching Advancement. An even BIGGER thank you to Red Cedar Elementary staff and parent council.
One World, Many Stories is a community-based program for young children of all cultures. This initiative promotes family reading practices with interactive events that expose children to a variety of cultures and ideas. Selected books from the past five years the event has run highlight the importance of community participation, global citizenship and intercultural understanding.
Nicole Namy is an International Sponsored Student Advisor. Nicole has been an advisor with OISS for the past 5 years and looks forward to continued programming that works to create and inspire community.
Posted in Community outreach, Other postings, Programs and events | Tagged Alain Serres, Barbara Bailey Hutchinson, Books, Chuck Close, Community participation, east lansing public library, Georgia O'Keefe, Global Citizenship, Grammy, I Have the Right to Be a Child, Intercultural Understanding, msu center for language teaching advancement, msu family resource center, MSU Residential Education and Housing Service, Mural, OISS, one world many stories, Reading, red cedar elementary, Target, United Nations Convention on the Rights of the Child | Leave a Comment »
The snow is melting, spring is almost here, and before you know it, it’ll be graduation day—if only it were as simple as walking across a stage. For all you seniors preparing to leave college and move on to the next step, you know how stressful it is to think of all the things you have to get done before May. To help ease the process, here’s a list of what you must complete as soon as possible in order to best prepare yourself for graduation.
1. Apply for graduation
2. Schedule an appointment with your academic advisor to make sure you will have all requirements fulfilled to graduate.
- It is important to check and double check that you’ve taken all the necessary steps to complete your degree. If you have classes left to take during the summer, be sure to register for them. Remember, you can still participate in May’s commencement ceremonies despite taking classes this summer.
3. Apply for Optional Practical Training (OPT).
- For F-1 visa holders, you may be eligible for OPT. This is 1 year of U.S. work authorization.
- It can take up to 90 days for the OPT application to be processed by USCIS, and graduation is less than 60 days away. If you haven’t begun filling out the forms, please do so right away. The application can be found on the OISS website. If you have questions or concerns regarding OPT, we have resources online as well as scheduled seminars and webinars that can help clarify them. Our next OPT webinar will be Monday March 18 from 3:30-4:30 p.m. and our next in-person OPT session will be April 9th from 3:30-4:30 p.m. in room 303 of the International Center.
- Be sure to check our website, Facebook, and Twitter regularly for the dates. http://oiss.isp.msu.edu/documents/students/opt.pdf
4. Order your cap and gown.
5. Get a visitor’s visa for family members who are planning to attend your commencement ceremony.
- The Office of Registrar offers letters that assist in the process of a family member obtaining a visitor’s visa in order to attend your commencement. Students interested in receiving a letter should go to the Office of Registrar, room 150 of the Administration Building, anytime between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. Mon-Fri with a photo ID. You can also email the office at firstname.lastname@example.org from your MSU email. Students should be prepared to provide the full name and relationship of he or she who is applying for the visitor’s visa. For more information, you can also view our form: Inviting Parents and Relatives to the U.S.
6. Figure out what you’ll be doing with your belongings.
- It’s likely that you’ve accumulated a large quantity of possessions in your four years at MSU. For that reason, the time to start looking for a new home for your couch, coffee table, and car is now. You have a variety of options; you can sell your items, give them away, or take them with you to your next destination. Whatever you decide to do with you accumulation of goods, do it soon so you can avoid having to deal with it later.
- The Lending Center makes used household items available to international students and scholars living in University Apartments (Spartan Village and Cherry Lane). If you have items that you are unsure what to do with, they may be able to take them off your hands so another international student or scholar can use them.
*Image taken from msutoday.msu.edu
Dena Elian is an International Relations Senior at MSU’s James Madison College. Currently, she is the Experiential Learning Intern at OISS. Her campus activities include involvement with organizations that promote Middle Eastern politics and Arab Culture. If you’d like to be featured in a Student Spotlight entry, please email her at email@example.com.
Posted in Other postings | Tagged Bachelor's Degree, cap and gown, ceremony, college, commencement, facebook, graduation, graduation checklist, graduation requirements, Lending Center, msu, Office of Registrar, OPT, seniors, snow, spartans, spring, summer, twitter, visa, webinar | Leave a Comment »