9 Universities
Professional Success Starts with Shorelight
Speak to a Shorelight advisor about how our career offerings get you closer to your professional goals.
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Career Preparation

The foundation for a successful career starts at university – and especially when you prepare early. From day one on campus, you can find professional development activities that build skills and pathways that serve your unique ambitions. Whether it’s attending a career fair, going on a career trek, enrolling in experiential learning courses, or pursuing an internship, there are so many ways to become career-ready while still in school. With Shorelight Career Services, our expert counselors give you the tools and know-how to set yourself up for professional success after graduation, with employers both abroad and back home.

Set yourself up for success with Career Premium

Stand out to future employers by joining Career Premium. This 16-week program provides training for certifications in high-demand skills, connects you with professionals in lucrative fields, and sets up virtual internships that boost your resume.

Check out our latest video to learn more:

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International students at US universities on OPT in the 2021-22 academic year
of interns converted to full-time employment in 2022
Average salary per hour for interns in the US
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An international student at University of the Pacific installs solar panels against a bright sky

With our co-ops and senior projects, [students] are prepared for corporate culture.

Elizabeth Orwin, DeanUniversity of the Pacific School of Engineering and Computer Science

My advisor has been my go-to resource at UIC. He always shared valuable insights and helped me along the way.

AditIntern at Amex and Ernst & Young, University of Illinois Chicago finance major

On the Fairfield StartUp visit to Silicon Valley, students asked thoughtful questions of ... company founders, startup coaches, professional investors, and even C-level executives.

Chris Huntley, PhDFairfield StartUp program director, Fairfield University
Students greet each other
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Career Preparation FAQs

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    What Is OPT and CPT?

    Optional Practical Training (OPT) and Curricular Practical Training (CPT) are programs that enable international students to gain hands-on work experience while studying in the US. OPT relates to one’s program of study and can take place during enrollment (pre-completion) or after graduation (post-completion). CPT is an alternative to internships, work-study, or similar programs, offered by a sponsoring employer that has a partnership with one’s university. Each has specific visa criteria and predetermined time duration, among other requirements. Get all the details on the Shorelight guide to OPT and CPT

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    What Is STEM OPT Extension?

    If you are an international student in the US who has earned a DHS-approved degree in a Science, Engineering, Technology, or Math (STEM) field, you can request an extension of 24 months for your Optional Practical Training (OPT). Get more details on the Shorelight guide to OPT

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    What Is Experiential Learning?

    Experiential learning, also known as hands-on learning or learning by doing, is a common practice in university curricula, especially in the US. Experiential learning activities can include workshops, community service, internships, real-life simulations, group projects, and more. Get more details on the Shorelight guide to experiential learning.

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    How Can I Get an Internship During My Studies?

    There are many ways to obtain an internship while you’re enrolled at university. You may find internships through Shorelight Career Services, your school’s career center, online job boards, alumni network, or even your professors and peers. Before investigating internship opportunities, speak with your Designated School Official (DSO) and/or your Shorelight counselor to be aware of and comply with all visa requirements. For more information, read the Shorelight guide to internships for international students.

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    What Other Work Experience Can I Gain During My Studies?

    Beyond internships, international students may be able to pursue campus jobs, research opportunities, volunteer activities, student club participation and/or leadership, and more. Shorelight Career Services is a good place to start for inspiration and brainstorming, with dedicated counseling to determine what’s possible. You can also speak with your campus teams for specific opportunities available, as well as your Designated School Official (DSO) for visa eligibility requirements.