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Embracing independence: tips for international nursing graduates on F1 visas

  • Publish Date: Posted 8 months ago
  • Author:by Conexus MedStaff

Have you thought about life after graduation yet? As an international nursing student studying in the U.S. on an F1 visa, it may be the case that you haven’t yet experienced what it’s like to live here without the distraction of university studies. You’ve already made the brave decision to study in a different country, and we’re here to help you thrive as you enter the next phase of your career as a registered nurse working with Conexus MedStaff in a state of your choice. In this article you’ll find practical tips to help you achieve independence as well as reach success in your professional and personal life as you settle into a new city and routine. Let's dive in!


Starting your career in a new city

Whenever you move, whether that’s to a new country or a new city, it’s worth taking the time to learn more about the location before you get there, and to set down roots when you arrive by meeting people.

  • Research your new location: Conexus MedStaff has job opportunities across the U.S. We’ll help you find the best job title and geographic location for your future career goals. When you’ve identified the perfect match, take the time to find out more about the city you’re moving to. It’ll make settling in much easier when you get there!

  • Learn about your new healthcare facility: Our team will be able to give you insight into your new employer, including the work environment, expectations for your role, and how best to commute to work. Feel free to ask us questions, and to do your own research, too.

  • Get to know your Conexus MedStaff community: We have on-the-ground support through the role of Engagement Managers who will help you to settle into your new home. They’ll introduce you to other international healthcare professionals within the Conexus community, who are also establishing their new careers and life in the U.S.

  • Connect with local professional networks: Join nursing associations or attend networking events in your new city to meet fellow professionals and potential mentors.


Budgeting and saving money

Keeping on top of your finances can help set a good quality of life, as well as keep positive mental health. If you aren’t already money-savvy, here are some tips to get started.

  • Create a budget: Track your income and expenses to establish a clear understanding of your financial situation.

  • Minimize expenses: Cut unnecessary costs by cooking meals at home, using public transportation, and shopping for discounts.

  • Set financial goals: Identify short-term and long-term goals to work towards, such as saving for a down payment on a home or paying off student loans.

  • Establish an emergency fund: Save a portion of your income each month to build a safety net for unexpected expenses.

  • Consider roommates: Sharing living expenses with roommates can significantly reduce monthly housing costs.


Overcoming loneliness

It isn’t always easy to move on your own – which is something you may have experienced when you first moved to the U.S. Below are some top tips to help as you start your new career.

  • Join social groups: Seek out organizations, nursing forums, cultural or ethnic societies associated with your home country, or groups with similar interests to meet like-minded individuals.

  • Attend community events: Participate in local events, cultural festivals, or volunteer opportunities to engage with the community and make new friends.

  • Stay connected with family and friends: Schedule regular video calls and use social media to keep in touch with loved ones back home.

  • Explore your new city: Take time to discover the attractions, parks, and hidden gems in your new city, which can help you feel more connected to your surroundings.

  • Move with a friend: Conexus MedStaff has a great referral program! You’ll receive $1,000 for a successful referral, and your friend will get a bonus of $500. That’s a win for everyone – and you could even deploy to the same healthcare facility.


Settling into a full-time career

Transitioning from being a full-time student to a full-time nurse may take some getting used to. We’ve pulled together our top advice for you to start your career in the strongest possible way.

  • Embrace continuous learning: Take advantage of any training opportunities or development programs that can help build your skillset. Our Conexus Academy has plenty to offer in this department!

  • Seek feedback: Actively seek feedback from your colleagues and supervisors to improve your nursing skills and enhance patient care.

  • Foster relationships: Build strong relationships with your colleagues to create a supportive work environment and enhance teamwork.

  • Practice self-care: Prioritize your physical and mental well-being by incorporating exercise, healthy meals, and stress-relieving activities into your routine.

  • Healthy work-life balance: It may be tempting to work as much overtime as possible to bump up your bank account but remember that a healthy work-life balance is important for your personal well-being. Don’t neglect it!


Thriving on your own

The faster you can settle into the groove of your new life as a registered nurse, the sooner you can grow – personally and professionally! Read on for our advice in this respect.

  • Develop a routine: Establishing a daily routine, including regular sleeping habits and meal times, can help provide stability and a sense of control in your new life.

  • Embrace independence: Challenge yourself to step outside of your comfort zone and try new experiences, whether it's exploring a new hobby or traveling to a nearby city.

  • Nurture self-confidence: Celebrate your achievements and acknowledge your strengths, reminding yourself that you are capable of overcoming any challenges that come your way.

  • Seek support when needed: Don't hesitate to reach out to mentors, supervisors, or counseling services if you need guidance or support during difficult times.

  • Celebrate milestones: Celebrate your successes, both big and small, as you navigate your career and personal life. Reward yourself for your hard work… you deserve it!


As a recently graduated international nursing student in the U.S., you have so much to offer – and so much to explore! Remember that you are capable of greatness, and success awaits you with open arms. Embrace the challenges and let your independence soar!


Conexus MedStaff offers opportunities for international nursing students on F1 visas to start a fulfilling career as a registered nurse in the U.S. Want to know more? Apply now and we’ll give you all the details, obligation-free!