College Graduates Experience New Cultures and Earn Money by Working Abroad

3 minutes

work & travel participants in New Zealand

Image courtesy of InterExchange.

InterExchange Working Abroad Provides Guidance and Support to Make Transition Abroad Smooth

Recent college graduates who are looking for an international alternative to the traditional work route are increasingly taking advantage of Work & Travel programs that take them to other countries. Work & Travel programs have grown in prominence for U.S. citizens as post-graduate work opportunities have shifted.

“I chose to apply for this program because I had just graduated college, and felt an intense desire to travel. I knew I wanted to see the world, but also realized I would need to make money … I am so happy about my decision,” said InterExchange Working Abroad participant AnnMarie.

InterExchange, a U.S. Department of State-designated exchange visitor program sponsor and nonprofit organization with more than 40 years of experience managing cross-cultural programs, has been helping Americans find Work & Travel programs that enhance their experience and career opportunities in Australia, Canada and New Zealand since 2007.

“Our Work & Travel programs make the world more accessible to recent graduates in ways that they can afford,” said InterExchange Working Abroad Program Manager, James Bridge. “International experience is increasingly important for young people as they develop their careers, but most people need to earn money while they travel. Our programs integrate both of these interests as they immerse themselves in the cultures and communities of their host country.”

InterExchange Working Abroad offers Work & Travel programs in Australia, Canada and New Zealand for up to one year. Typical jobs include short-term positions at places like ski resorts, restaurants and hotels or other entry-level or low skill positions. Other kinds of work, including temp office jobs, are also available.

“I like the one-year work visa because it gives me the freedom to travel wherever I want while also seeking work when possible,” says Jason, an InterExchange Working Abroad participant.

Feedback from InterExchange Working Abroad’s Work & Travel participants is strong. During the past two years, 100 percent of InterExchange Working Abroad Work & Travel participants have said they would recommend the program to their friends.

“I went abroad with InterExchange to Australia and New Zealand,” says, Bonnie, a recent participant. “I definitely would recommend it! My sister and I did a lot of the WWoofing program because we wanted to experience the full culture of the country. You stay with very friendly people and it is definitely a phenomenal experience.”

Why is international work experience so valuable to hiring organizations?

“Companies are operating over so many international boundaries, so the more languages and experience with different cultures you can bring to a company, the more you can help expand its global reach,” Oliver Watson, a managing director at leading professional recruitment consultancy Michael Page, told the Financial Times.

As interest in living and working abroad after graduation grows – InterExchange Working Abroad’s Work & Travel program has nearly doubled in size each of the past two years, agency services will continue to find the best solutions for them.

InterExchange is a nonprofit organization committed to improving international understanding by facilitating life-changing, exceptional cultural exchange experiences for young people, businesses and families around the world. As both a J-1 Visa sponsor designated by the U.S. Department of State and a cross‐cultural ambassador, we develop meaningful relationships with participants from more than 60 countries as well as with international cooperating agencies, host employers and families. We ensure that all in our community are treated with respect and consideration and are supported by staff with firsthand experience living and working abroad.

U.S. Department of State-Designated J-1 Visa Sponsor
Alliance for International Exchange
Exclusive partner of the Erasmus Student Network for J-1 Visa sponsorship of internships in the U.S.
European-American Chamber of Commerce New York
Generation Study Abroad
Global Ties U.S.
International Au Pair Association
WYSE Travel Confederation