So You Want To Work In New York?

It’s said by many that New York is one of those cities, that when you’re in it, you feel like you’re at the center of the universe. You rarely feel like you’re missing out. All that noise. A multitude of people. And all that opportunity.

Over the next few weeks I will be writing a number of article’s explaining the steps graduates or indeed young professionals can take on finding professional employment in New York. Whether it is to acquire high level industry experience or just to get your foot in the door and kick start your career in the US.

The following upcoming article topics will provide relevant advice on how to make that dream a reality:

Nearly all Irish people know of someone who has taken advantage of the J1 visa whilst in their 20s or at least know of its sheer existence, but what is not as commonly known, is that there are different types of J1 visas for different purposes.

For professional career experience, the two main categories for the J1 are the J1 Intern/Graduate visa and the J1 Trainee visa. There are other categories and types depending on your length of stay, industry and experience level which you can read further at this link.

For the purpose of these articles, however, we will be explaining the process of the two visa categories mentioned above and how gaining relevant business and career experience in your chosen occupational field in the US, can open all sorts of doors.

To give you some insight into what lies ahead, take a look at a few lines some other J1s have wrote:

Ciara O’Donnell
Age: 32
From: Donegal, Ireland
Visa: J1 Graduate Visa
Industry: Interior Design (Internship)

”Initially the process to find a suitable internship was quite difficult to fulfil the requirements of the Visa. I took initiative and started networking and approaching companies directly, even if they weren’t publicly hiring and eventually landed a great internship with a well-respected firm within the industry.

It made me learn how cut throat the real world is and if you don’t push yourself no one else will. Overall I gained lasting experience and confidence to start the process of opening my own business.”

Stephen Mulvey 
Age: 23
From: Kildare, Ireland
Visa: J1 Graduate Visa
Industry: Private Equity (Angel Investing)

”Articulating in even a semi original way the greatness of New York City life is quite a task. Look, it’s New York, ok? Its legend is secure. My testimony is superfluous. It’s already in several decades’ worth of adoring books, songs and movies. It’s in the eight million other stories jammed into five pulsing boroughs of unbelievable diversity and character.

My employers are proving to be fantastic mentors. They encourage me to keep track of and really think about what I’m learning as I go. I’ve also made lots of connections through my work and networking that could be quite important in the future.”

It is important to remember that although the bright lights and skyscrapers may be enticing. New York may not be for everyone. It’s one thing visiting New York and another thing living here. So my advice as a starting point, is to make sure you really, really want it, as the journey on finding work and acquiring a visa can be long and frustrating.

That said there are ways and means, organizations and people to help you. Some people get lucky and some people have to grind for it but just buckle and down and stay motivated! We’ll help you as best we can!

*My next series of J1 advice articles will be released soon. So keep a look out by joining Digital Irish social media platforms.*

About the author:

James Cumiskey is Business Development Manager for KEMP Technologies based in their New York headquarters. Coming from Ireland, he has been through the J1 process before and found his employment through networking and interviewing on the ground here in the city. Find him on Twitter or LinkedIn.


Join Our Community

Get always up to date information from the #digitalirish community, delivered straight to your inbox.