If you are a new immigrant and planning to work here in America. It will take a few months to find a job that you want. In between job applications and interviews, you can volunteer your time to any non-profit organizations to at least give you an idea on how the work setting is here in America.

Volunteering will also help you in job hunting because it might open doors to you. Some organizations will even agree to be used as a reference for companies that you are applying for. But you will have to volunteer a significant amount of time in the organization. Most require 50 hours of volunteer activities before they can give you a letter of reference. Plus you can add your volunteer experience in your resume.

Where Can I Volunteer?

Check your area for any non-profit organizations that requires volunteers:

  • Hospitals
  • Libraries
  • Museums or History Centers
  • Animal Shelters
  • Habitat for Humanity
  • You can also sign up on Volunteer Match to find organizations who are looking for volunteers in your area.

What Do I Need to Become a Volunteer?

You only need a valid ID to volunteer. Most of these non-profit organizations require background check before you can start. Sometimes, they will ask you if you have a reliable mode of transportation to go to their office, especially in areas that does not have reliable public transportation.

Job Hunting

Job hunting is hard wherever you go. It takes patience and perseverance to find the right job for you. It will also be helpful if you know exactly what you want to do.

Credential Evaluation

If the position you want to apply for requires a high school diploma or college degree, you need to have your credentials evaluated by a recommended evaluator here in the USA. Some companies have their preferred evaluators. But most companies choose any of the evaluators that are members of NACES (National Association of Credential Evaluation Services):

Some members are:
Educational Credential Evaluators, Inc.
World Education Services

Update Resume

Make sure you have an updated resume. Do not indicate age, race or picture on your resume. Make it concise. One or two pages of resume is ideal.

Here in Visa Harmony, we can help you format your resume so it will be more ideal to use here in USA. Please send us an e-mail for more information: resume@visaharmony.com

Create Your Profile

You can start signing up on some job hunting websites. There will be some websites that will be available for you locally but you can start with these sites:

Job Interview

Even when you have done a lot of job interviews in your life, it never seems to get any easier. You have to sell yourself, your skills and you have to stay cheerful and bubbly throughout the interview.

Here are some job interview tips to help you prepare yourself:

Practice Makes Perfect

Here in America, the interview is a lot different than in the Philippines. Here they ask more situational-type questions. You need to think of specific examples of different situations that happened to you. You need to make sure you highlight your skills and show that you have great work ethics.

Some examples of interview questions are listed here.

Introduction is also important in starting the interview. Practice the things that you want to say when you are asked to introduce yourself. Keep it short and sweet. A full minute is enough for introduction.

Do Your Research

Learn about the company, its industry and the position you are applying for. This can also help you prepare questions to ask later in the interview.

Dress the Part

Make sure your interview outfit is neat and appropriate for the type of company you are interviewing with.

Be Punctual

Plan to be at the interview location at least 15 minutes before the interview so you have time to look for the specific office and to calm down before the interview.

Stay Composed

Try to stay relaxed during the interview and make sure you are communicating well with the interviewer. If you get nervous at some point, you can pause for a little bit before proceeding.

Be Yourself

Answer each question as honestly as possible.

Listen Carefully and Ask Questions

If you did not understand a question, you can ask the interviewer to repeat it so you can answer it correctly. Also, be sure to prepare a few questions to ask the interviewer to show that you are really interested in the job.


Make sure you send a Thank You Note to your interviewer for taking the time to interview you. You can also follow-up in a week or two if you still have not heard anything from them.