[See which U.S. universities have the most international students.]
3. Ask about guaranteed employment: Generally, international students on student visas aren't allowed jobs off campus, so they have to work on campus or not work at all, Kirby says. Some schools, however, including Westminster, offer guaranteed college employment for international students who have financial need. Guaranteed employment means it's part of the financial aid package and students have employment confirmed before arrival.
In many cases, $2,000 to $2,500 is earned per semester working clerical, tutoring, or lab assistant positions, says Kirby. For instance, Trapti Brisen, a Westminster freshman from India, works as a student assistant in the admissions office, helping with mailings and data entry and escorting students to appointments with staff members. The money she earns covers what her scholarship doesn't: health insurance, taxes, and miscellaneous personal expenses.
International students should contact university financial aid offices about guaranteed employment opportunities, Kirby notes. If a school doesn't offer guaranteed employment before arrival, ask the financial aid office about available jobs that international students should apply to once on campus.
Reyna Gobel, frequently quoted as an expert on student loans and college costs, is the author of "Graduation Debt: How To Manage Student Loans And Live Your Life" and "How Smart Students Pay for School: The Best Way to Save for College, Get the Right Loans, and Repay Debt." She has appeared on PBS's Nightly Business Report and speaks regularly at CollegeWeekLive.