5 Strategies to Find Your First International Job or Internship

Posted on Jun 19, 2015 | 12 comments

5 Strategies to Find Your First International Job or Internship

Applying for your first job or internship can be a stressful and overwhelming experience, especially when focusing your search on an international position. To help you in the process, we have gathered a few tips and tricks to jumpstart your job search and make it more effective!


  1. Step Back & Reflect

    Concretize your expectations and what your ideal position is and use that vision to drive your job search. Here are 3 questions to help you outline your goals:

    • What are your goals? Think of this as a checklist. What are your must-have requirements? Are you looking in a certain field? Do you want to stay long-term or short-term?
    • What are your strengths and value-added? Start by writing down all the things you excel at or enjoy doing. Then, edit it down to compose a list of your professional strengths and skills.
    • What are your weaknesses? Be sure to address any weaknesses you might have. It’s important to be aware of the areas you struggle in so you don’t dive into a situation that you might not be fit for. In addition to that, most interviewers will ask for some sort of self-assessment of your strengths and weaknesses. The key is being able to recognize your weaknesses and relay them to the interviewer in a way that demonstrates your self-awareness and assures them that it will not impact the quality of your work.
  2. Research & Brainstorm Your Global Career Options

    If you have access to Passport Career, there are several
    sections in each the Country & City Portfolios that will help you research your destination options. After selecting a destination, be sure to read through the Job Search Overview, the Top Employers to Target, and the Internships sections to locate key employment/internship opportunities in your chosen destination to assure that your chosen destination has opportunities that lend to your career goals. If you don’t have access to Passport Career, do research employment trends and needs in your desired destination. Next, begin looking at global business-related websites and network with professionals who work or previously worked abroad.

  3. Draft a Country-Specific Résumé/CV

    Creating a résumé/CV tailored to the customs in your desired country is crucial in your global job search. Every country has its own style of résumé/CV. Although the term résumé is used in North America, CV (curriculum vitae) is use in most countries outside of North America. Passport Career members will find detailed instructions and samples of country-specific résumés/CVs for over 80 countries in the Country & City Portfolios. If you do not have access to Passport Career, you will need to identify the general format and style for your country of interest and develop it according to their expectations. Some countries, such as Germany, expect a photo to be included in a CV, and some countries even expect you to include your birthdate, marital status, and a variety of other personal information. Remember: all experience is valuable and worth mentioning.

  4. Identify International Jobs & Internships

    Once you have completed the first three steps, start looking for specific positions and internships in your destination of interest. Reach out to industry leaders or mentors for jobs or internships referrals in your field. Passport Career provides a comprehensive International Job/Internship Portal, which is updated daily with more than 1,000,000 opportunities in 203 countries. You will also find country-specific and city-specific job boards that are recommended by global career experts. These are located in each of the Country & City Portfolios and will provide you access to millions of additional opportunities around the world. Additionally, our webinars, held weekly, provide professional strategies and guidance to narrow global career search.

  5. It’s Time to Apply for International Jobs & Internships!

    Once you have identified a job or internship that you wish to apply for, make sure you gear your résumé/CV towards the location and the field the job is in. Look up “hot” words in your field and do your best to include them in your résumé/CV. These will not only stand out to recruiters but will also help your résumé/CV perform better in an automated company database. Remember to do the same for your cover letter and use your goals, strengths, and weaknesses as an outline, while also strategically adding in “hot” words. Be sure to articulate your motivation for applying to the position or internship as well as what you will bring to the table—your value-added! Don’t forget to spell check your résumé/CV, application, and cover letter before you send it. Always be sure to get another person to review it for clarity, spelling, and appropriateness (for the country, culture and position).


Passport Career provides detailed career and cultural information and extensive resources for finding a job, internship, or alternative career opportunity in over 80 countries.  If your organization, company, embassy, university/college, library or other institution would like access to our country portfolios (15,000+ pages of expert content for 80+ countries and 250+ cities) to share with your employees, their spouses/partners, students and others experiencing a national or international career transition, please contact us regarding a free, live online demo and details on how to obtain a license to access Passport Career.

Good luck with your transition!

Katelyn Bellus, Research and Private Website Content Manager


  1. Saved as a favoritebookmarked!!, I really likeI likeI love your blogyour siteyour web siteyour website!

  2. Yes! Finally someone writes about shopping

  3. I’m impressed, I must say. Rarely do I encounter a blog that’s
    both educative and entertaining, and let me tell you, you have
    hit the nail on the head. The issue is an issue that not enough people are speaking intelligently about.
    I’m very happy I came across this in my search for something regarding this.

  4. Hi, after reading this amazing post i am as well delighted to share
    my know-how here with mates.

  5. I’ll right away snatch your rss as I can’t in finding your e-mail subscription link or newsletter
    service. Do you’ve any? Please allow me know so that I may
    just subscribe. Thanks.

    • Email subscription can be done on the sidebar of any page under “Subscribe to our Global Career Blog”, and a newsletter subscription can be found at the bottom of any page in the footer. Thanks for checking us out! – Kayla Neal

  6. There’s certainly a lot to learn about this subject.
    I really like all of the points you made.

  7. Hi! This is my first visit to your blog! We are a team of volunteers and starting a new initiative in a community in the same
    niche. Your blog provided us valuable information to work on. You have done a extraordinary job!

    • Thanks for the positive feedback! – Kayla

  8. I have to thank you for the efforts you have put in writing this website.
    I really hope to check out the same high-grade blog posts by you later on as well.
    In fact, your creative writing abilities has inspired me to get
    my own website now 😉

  9. Hi Katelyn,
    Please how do I access jobs/internship opportunities on passport career.com?
    Thank you

    • Hi there Maurice,

      To access our job/internship portal, you have to login to Passport Career’s private site. You can obtain a username and password from your company, university, or organization. Currently, we do not offer our services to individual job seekers. If you are interested in having us contact your organization/educational institution about providing Passport Career access for your use, please email us at info@passportcareer.com. In the meantime, subscribe to our Global Career Blog on the sidebar for new posts. Our best wishes to you on your global job search!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Share This

Share This

Share this post with your friends!