The top confidence tips for international students to help your employability


For many students, the jump from studying to employment can be a struggle due to the different skills that are needed at university compared to the working world. When searching for a graduate role ,being organised, expanding your skills and resilience are all important. However, building your confidence can be key to learning how to successfully promote yourself and to gain new skills that can help you find the perfect job.

Practice makes perfect

When it comes to interviews it’s all about being prepared and this, in turn, will make you feel more confident when met by an interview panel. Research the job thoroughly, and take the time to contact the company beforehand if appropriate. Will your interview be competency-based, a group interview or maybe at an assessment centre? Knowing the type of interview you’ll be facing will not only help you prepare appropriate answers but also make you feel more confident because you will have some idea of what’s expected from you. One of the best ways to try this is to find someone to ask you practice questions. This could be a friend or you can usually book a practice interview with your university’s careers team. That way you can run through possible questions and practice answering in a clear voice while keeping eye contact. Here, your confidence will come from being prepared.

Find your selling points

Could you list what your top selling points are? It can be hard sometimes to think of what you do well, but starting to do this will help you feel more assured when applying for jobs. Visit the careers team at your institution and they will be able to help you work out what your best skills are in order to use them for your job search. Is there something that you could build on to add to your CV? For example, as an international student, you may be bilingual which is a fantastic skill but how is this useful to employers? The role may call for language skills but if you think a bit outside the box you can turn this skill into more. Many universities have a language exchange café where students from around the world meet to improve language skills or learn about different cultures. By joining a club like this you can expand your cultural knowledge, learn new languages and practice networking. Knowing what you are good at will help you feel more confident when it comes to writing your resume or answering interview questions.

Try something new

Expanding your ability is another way to give yourself a confidence boost. Not only will you learn something new but there are usually multiple skills you’ll gain from each experience. A good way to learn while giving back to the community is by volunteering. Volunteering you can expand your interpersonal skills, teach you how to support others, practice language and fine tune your time management. Many organisations provide ad-hoc opportunities which would still leave you time to study. Networking is another great way to learn and share with others. Events that could be useful are careers fairs, industry or graduate meet-ups and university events. Networking can help you grow confidence in yourself and your abilities. You can not only share knowledge with social or professional contacts at these events, but also learn how to promote yourself. It can be difficult to know how to talk about your achievements but here you can learn how to do it in a social environment and use the experience at your next interview.

When looking for your graduate job, set realistic goals and when you’ve met them, you’ll get a boost that will help you feel like you can tackle anything! If you’re looking for industry-specific careers advice, the latest international news and global jobs, register with GradLink today for free access to our site.

By Jen Garmston Published: Apr 08,2019