Recruiting International Students

A significant percentage of Jenkins MBA students are international. These highly-skilled students provide global experience and insights that are beneficial to solving complex business problems, and make these candidates an asset to their respective firms.

At the Poole College of Management Career Center, we’re here to help with any questions you might have about recruiting our international MBAs.

Hiring International MBAs

Summer Internship

International students in F-1 or J-1 visa status can work in the U.S. as summer interns without sponsorship from a company. This process requires no costs from the  employer, and little paperwork is involved. Please follow these steps:

  • Send an offer letter on company letterhead to the NC State MBA student. It should state employment dates, hours, location, and job specifications.
  • Submit the student’s work application with the letter of employment.

Full-time Employment

Most international students in F-1 or J-1 status accept short-term employment for up to 12 months. During this time, there are no costs to the employer.

International students may qualify for an H-1B visa. This allows them to work in the U.S. for up to six years.

  • The employer must submit the visa petition and pay filing fees.
  • Processing times for H-1B visas vary. “Premium Processing” is an option if the position and employee qualify. For timely processing, this option is strongly recommended.
  • Most employers work with a lawyer to help with H-1B visa or permanent residency petitions.

The U.S. Citizenship and Immigration website ( is a useful tool for the most timely information and regulations.

Spotlight on Gaurav Chhabra

International Success at Apple

When Gaurav Chhabra, originally from New Delhi, India, began in his role as a global supply manager at Apple’s offices in Cupertino, California, he launched a career path that he set for himself when entering the Jenkins MBA program at the NC State University Jenkins Graduate School of Management.

With eight years’ experience as an electronics engineer, Chhabra said he entered the MBA program because “I wanted to broaden my horizons and get to know the business side of things. In the next few years I see myself growing as a business professional, but still using my technical knowledge.”

He explains his perspective on the difference between thinking like an engineer and thinking like a manager.

“The Jenkins MBA really helped me take that leap from thinking like an engineer to thinking like a manager. The two-year full time program made me think critically about business problems and how to go about solving them,” he said.

He credits the Jenkins MBA curriculum for providing both the theoretical and experiential learning – on top of his prior engineering experience – that enabled him to stand out when meeting with recruiters and prepared him for his role at Apple.


What does F-1 status mean?
An F-1 visa is a student visa, under which an international student can complete a summer internship. When an international student’s F-1 visa expires at graduation, he or she is eligible for Optional Practical Training. Students hired for Practical Training are not required to change their immigration status in the 12 months following graduation.

Is it more costly to hire an international student?
International students may work a summer internship and for 12 months following graduation without sponsorship at no additional cost to the employer. Over this period, international employees can help employers streamline the process of applying for an H-1B visa. On average, the cost of an H-1B visa is less than half of the average MBA signing bonus.

Does a student need to have work authorization when I hire them?
No, a student does not need to have work authorization upon accepting an offer. However, they must have work authorization upon starting a job. Students apply for work authorization in coordination with NCSU-OIS.

How long does it take for a student to receive work authorization?
It typically takes 3 months to receive work authorization after initializing paperwork. Students start the process on their own in late February or early March before graduation. There are no costs and little paperwork involved for the employer in this process.

Can I employ international students after their student work authorization expires?
You can continue to employ international students by applying for and receiving H-1B status with USCIS. Students can also continue to work under the TN and E-3 categories, which do not require USCIS approval.

When should I apply for an employee’s H1B Visa?
H-1B status is offered once a year in April. Employers must work with employees to submit paperwork by this date. Further information can be found on the USCIS website.

Do I have to prove that international students are not taking jobs from qualified Americans?
Employers are not required to prove that citizens from another country did not take jobs from qualified Americans under the H-1B visa.