Like every place in the world,there are things you have to put in place to ensure your success. America provides a bounty of goodies but these goodies don’t come free,cheap or easy.
5 main things you need for a successful stay in America:
1) A driver’s license
For most things you will be asked to produce a form of identification (I.D). You can take your passport everywhere you go. However,if you are nervous like me about loosing your passport,then a driver’s license should be on your list. You do not necessarily need to have a car to get a driver’s license.
2) Social Security Number (SSN)
For most F1 students, we don’t really understand the SSN because things are done differently in our home country. Nonetheless, setting some money aside to get an SSN when you get your first job will be tremendously beneficial to you in the future. Always remember you need an SSN to work.
3) A job
Of course you need your SSN to even start your first job. Unless you are doing a CPT also known as co-op training, while in school,you can not have a paid job off campus on F1 visa. So, the smart thing to do will be to look for jobs on campus, summer positions with your professor or a CPT. Just make sure you keep some income coming in. If you have a side hustle like hair,makeup, personal trainer by all means use it! Get some $$.
4) Good friends
Surround yourself with people who are not trying to break the law or do anything illegal. Surround yourself with people who have goals and challenge you to be better. You can only be as good as the company you keep. Remember there is no “fast” way to success. Don’t be deceived. There is always a price to pay for trying to be “fast” Deportation is one, jail time is another.
5) Never give up attitude
America is a great place to live and offers so many opportunities, but it’s also one of the most frustrating places to live for F1 students. See more from my last post (Every F-1 student’s nightmare).You need faith and resilience because doors will close in your face, you might face despair once or twice. You will always have to pick yourself up and try again. You have to keep trying and keep pushing. Choose to believe again, to hope again, to dream again. Somehow things will start lining up in your favor. But it doesn’t come without a fight.