While studying in Australia as an international student, you have the opportunity to find part-time or casual work.
Not only does this give you extra income, but it’s also an opportunity to network, build your resume and gain valuable experience in the workforce.
But, finding employment in a new country can be challenging. To help, we’ve put together this ultimate guide to finding student jobs on the Gold Coast, with insights from international student, Gabriela Damaceno.
Understanding your working rights
Before you start looking for international student jobs on the Gold Coast, it’s important to understand your rights when working in Australia on a Student visa (subclass 500).
The Australian Government recently increased the working hour cap for this visa. International students can now work 48 hours per fortnight and unlimited hours during holiday breaks.
However, while working, you’ll still need to ensure you adhere to the conditions of your visa. While working, you must:
- Maintain your course enrolment,
- Attend your classes, and
- Make good progress in your course
Part-time and casual employees have the same rights as any other worker in Australia. Make sure you do your research and understand your rights to ensure you’re being treated fairly at work.
Popular student jobs in the Gold Coast
The Gold Coast is one of Australia’s fastest-growing cities. Popular part-time jobs for international students on the Gold Coast include roles in hospitality, retail and tourism.
While studying toward her Diploma of Marketing and Communication from Australian Pacific College, Gabriela, originally from Brazil, says she was able to support herself by working in a variety of interesting roles.
“I started in a café, and I used to do events and functions as a waitress,” she says. “Then, I did a course to become a swim teacher. On the Gold Coast, everybody swims. Life is around water, so it was a nice way for me to have a job, and pay the bills.”
Other popular casual and part-time positions for students include:
- Retail assistant
- Tour guide
- Surf instructor
How to find a job on the Gold Coast
So, where do you start your job search?
Job boards are a great place to start. For example, Gold Coast Student Jobs is a platform specialising in connecting students and graduates to opportunities in their area.
Don’t forget to explore other online job boards, where you can filter opportunities based on location, industry and more. Some well-known boards include:
Also, check with your education provider. Many institutions have their own boards that you can access to find roles, and lots offer career advice and support, too.
Gabriela adds that it can be helpful to contact small businesses directly. This method helped her find a great internship while studying.
“Big corporations, they have interns and graduate programs, but small businesses, which are 90% of the businesses in Australia, don’t have a formal structure to get interns.”
Gabriela was able to land an internship with a marketing agency after sending emails to small businesses in her area.
“The marketing agency that hired me said they didn’t think about getting an intern, but when I sent them my cover letter asking for an internship, they said this could be a good opportunity.”
Embrace the power of networking
Networking is another important tool that can help you land a job in Australia.
Your teachers, work colleagues and even your friends from your course can all help you gain work experience while you’re studying, learn new skills or land a job post-graduation.
You can meet people at events hosted by your education provider, professional networking meet-ups or even by connecting virtually by reaching out on platforms like LinkedIn.
Gabriela says networking is crucial and advises others to go in with the right mindset.
“I think it’s crucial to go to networking events and just talk with people. Not trying to sell yourself to people, but just go with a mindset of ‘what can I learn today?’”
Gabriela adds that she was able to find information on networking events through Facebook groups, LinkedIn and venues like the Gold Coast Convention Centre.
Remember your value
Gabriela’s top tip for international students is to remember that you have a lot to offer your future employer, too.
When she first started looking for a role, she found it hard to have confidence in herself. “I was so self-conscious about my accent and that English was not my first language. But at the end of the day, you are learning on your internship, and the employer is also learning from you.”
Through her networking and internship experiences, she soon felt more at ease.
She says that Australia’s multicultural work environment helped her realise that, in the end, people want employees who are reliable, curious and want to help their business grow.