As we have mentioned before, education is a means to an end and not an end unto itself. The primary purpose of education, at least for international students, is to launch a successful career. Whether you choose to further your education or start your career, the choice depends on your ambitions, goals, and interests. Regardless, you have to identify and evaluate your choices upon graduation carefully.
A vast majority of international students, after studying in America or Canada, make every effort to stay in North America permanently. The process of converting your legal status from being a student to a permanent resident (or legal immigrant) is straightforward, albeit bureaucratic and time-consuming. Many international students are able to set themselves up on the track of obtaining legal immigration upon graduation, but others have to devise legal ways to continue living in North America until such time as they can be on track for obtaining a permanent residency status.
For those international students who wish to return to the home country after graduation, you know your choices of further education and starting a career well. You would also have family, friends, and advisors in the home country who can assist you in your quest.
Should you wish to stay in North America after graduation, your choices are:
If you wish to continue your education, you have already gone through the process of applying for and obtaining admission and/or financial aid. Also, this book offers guidance on how one goes about doing this. On the other hand, if you wish to start a career and obtain permanent resident status, the remainder of this chapter offers your relevant information and guidance.