Many of us who came over on a Summer J1 in the early nineties arrived in NY towards the end of June due to our college exam schedules at the time. We were told that we would miss out on all the jobs because US students will have taken them all by the time we get over here. That was not the case. Many of us found jobs in NY, and in vacation spots in the tri-state region, during the first couple of weeks in July…so don’t lose hope!
One tip we will give you is to pound the pavement on the July 4th w/end, even on July 4th (or any bank holiday). When everyone else is celebrating, you can maximize your chances of getting a job. It worked for some of us. I was immediately hired on July 4th working in a restaurant kitchen preparing food. July 4th is a day when employees will call out sick leaving employers short staffed. So this is your opportunity to get your foot in the door. I would hit as many places as possible. Get up early in the morning and spend the day calling into restaurants, bars, stores etc. Remember the Irish have a reputation for having a strong work ethic. We’re all ambassadors for our country. What we do in the US will help or hinder those who follow in our footsteps. Fortunately those who have gone before us have given us a great reputation and hence opportunities. Good Luck!!
If you know of anybody who is stuck for accommodation, give them my number (347 251 3435) or tell them to join the facebook group
http://www.facebook.com/brian. osullivan2#!/group.php?gid= 131991656827371&ref=mf
If you have any other nights coming up in O’Caseys bar, let me know too, Id love to go!
(2010) Feedback from J1 visa holder Killian McNally:“I attended the Irish consulate evening last week and like a lot of people had no work, it seemed hopeless. However, as of today I have had a total of 4 job offers because of craigslist applications and a few walk ins. It took about a week or 2 before some of the places got back to me. Ben & Jerrys downstairs in the Rockerfeller centre, near 47th street, are definitely hiring as I got two emails and phonecalls from them since I applied looking for me to come in for an interview. The manager there is very friendly and all the staff are very pleasant and encouraging if any applicant wants to see the manager (his name is Jason if anyone wants to know). I had to turn down the position because i was offered work in Brooklyn in a juice bar and part time work as a receptionist for La Palestra. I hope this helps the other jobless J1s! There’s still hope in NYC!”
(2010) The Irish Consulate spoke with the Irish Immigration and Pastoral Center in Philadelphia. The jobs market isn’t great down there but they were told that there may be opportunities for students. They would be happy to circulate CV’s among the Irish community and try and locate jobs. One thing that Philly has going for it is cost of living. A room in a shared place in the city centre costs about $500 – a lot cheaper if you move outside the centre – and you can get a studio for $800. If you are or know of some students who might be interested, please send us a CV and we will forward it on to the Consulate who will forward to the appropriate person in Philly.
Always contact the Chamber of Commerce in the location where you are looking for a job particularly if you decide to search for employment outside of NYC. This is important research you should do prior to relocating. For a complete listing of US Chambers www.chamberofcommerce.com
Dont forget, the Irish Examiner USA is offering all of you a free classified ad in its newspaper so please email us a few lines about the type of job you are looking for and your phone no.
Those of you who have got jobs already, please let us know so that we can update our records, and please ask your employer if they are still hiring so that you might be able to help other Failte 32 job seekers.
For those of you on four month J1 visas, you must be flexible and consider moving to other locations at least within the tri-state region. Back in the late 80’s, it was common for the J1 visa holders to go to places such as the Hamptons NY, Cape Cod Mass., and the Jersey Shore. These locations are in need of staff during the Summer months and might be able to hire you immediately. You should try the Hamptons first, then consider taking a Greyhound bus (or some of the discount buses on Canal St.) to places like Cape Cod, CT and the Jersey shore.
are two legitimate discount bus companies, one owned by Coach USA, the other byGreyhound Bus Lines,
both have departures from midtown Manhattan, The Chinese bus companies such as www.apexbus.com/ are not all legitimate, but here is a website that lists most of them:
There are many seasonal jobs available in the Hamptons in restaurants, hotels, bars, landscaping etc. These jobs pay quite well particularly landscaping. You could pick up a cheap truck and rent some equipment and form your own crew or join an existing crew. Of course always make sure to check appropriate local business regulations before you start, and also make sure you adhere to the job regulations of the J1 visa. Always be responsible!
The Hampton Jitney (www.hamptonjitney.com) which takes passengers to and from the Hamptons requires additional staff during Summer months. You can take the Jitney from 59th St. in Manhattan or from Queens (check schedule online), so it’s worth making an inquiring about these positions when taking a trip out to the Hamptons to look for employment.
We would suggest you take the Jitney to South Hampton (Southfork) stop as this is a main hub and a good place to start looking for work.
You could also look for work at the wineries by taking the Jitney to the North fork of the Island (www.northfork.com).
The Ferry at Southhold in the Hamptons (Northfork) also hires extra ‘mates’ during the Summer months.
Google for example ‘jobs in the Hamptons’ as this can help you do some research before hand.
Chelsea Piers in Manhattan (www.chelseapiers.com) hires extra staff during Summer months to cater for the increased number of tourists. Likewise South Street Seaport (www.southstreetseaport.com) is a very busy tourist location during the Summer period. There are lots of activities going on at these locations including boat trips to Ellis Island/Statue of Liberty, tours of the Intrepid battle ship, sports, events, restaurants, tour guides etc.
One thing NY is not short of and that is tourists, so it might be worth your while applying for tour guide positions (bus/boat) or jobs selling bus/helicopter tour tickets (commission based but cash in hand….more commission selling helicopter tours!!) or concert tickets in Times Square, at the Empire State Bldng. or at other tourist attractions. For inquiries visit the tourist center in Times Square.
If you have been in NY for a few weeks already and have not had any success finding employment, it would be advisable to start looking in some of the places mentioned above. However, if you are going to remain on in NYC, you could focus your efforts by calling into hotels. Irish pubs do not seem to be hiring much based on the feedback some of you have provided, however hotels are hiring for Summer positions (which right now are more attractive than hiring full-time staff), and unlike pubs, offer you the chance of applying for more than one position on each visit, as hotels have a number of different departments requiring staff.
Your best chance of finding a hotel job is walking door to door. You start say at 23rd St. and work your way up to Central Park by walking east to west along 23rd, back up 24th and so on. Bring your resume with you and each time you walk into a hotel, ask to speak with the manager. You will not always get to speak with them but front office managers tend to stand at the desk from time to time during the day so you might be lucky and get a brief interview.
Always ask for a business card when you drop off your resume, and the name of the person who does the hiring so that you can follow up with them the next day. If you do not do this, the receptionist might just throw your resume in the trash. There are many smaller boutique hotels scattered all over NY so don’t just focus on larger properties. It is more difficult finding employment in larger hotels as they have very formal hiring practices which take a long time to process. The smaller properties are less formal and you will find it easier to get in contact with the decision maker. But remember, always ask for the name of the person who does the hiring, get a hotel business card, and follow up next day!
If you’re going to call into restaurants and bars, don’t limit yourself to jobs in Irish pubs but call into every type of bar and restaurant in NYC. Also, contact Brendan Barry who’s website is www.irishbusinesssolutions.net email:[email protected]. He specializes in finding jobs in bars, restaurants and hotels, so he might have some Summer positions available.
Not to give preference to one any one of our affiliated organizations but it might be worth your while getting in touch with you county society. There are 32 county societies in NY representing each of the 32 counties in Ireland. Members of these societies have deep roots in the Irish community and might be able to help you find work particularly if you’re from their own county back home. For contact information, go to www.uicany.org.
There are details of Irish rugby/soccer and other clubs under the ‘affiliations’ tab so if you are into sports, why not join these clubs which are always looking for new players. This can be a great way to find employment.
The US Open (www.usopen.org) starts the end of August which is a little late for J1 visa holders, but who knows, you may need a job if you’re staying through September.
Don’t forget to check out other sections of our website. If you’re doing research into the Irish Government, our Reports can provide you with valuable insights.