I have been to New York City in January 2019, just in time to catch the sight of the famous Christmas Tree by the Rockefeller Centre, before it is taken down every year on the first weekend after New Years Eve. I have immediately decided I want to return to this beautiful city.
I have found Architect-US by searching online for graduate programs that involve F1 visas, which led me to J1 visas and eventually to this program. Many types of people can participate in the J1 exchange visitor program, so it was essential that Architect-US had the experience to process program applications for architects specifically. I was quite excited to find out that my dream to work in the United Stated has become a true possibility. Sonia and Patricia has been very helpful and answered all my questions, which I had one too many!
I have been living in Hong Kong for more than 5 years before returning to Hungary to spend some time with my family. In Hong Kong, I have been working as an architectural consultant focusing on emerging technology for design firms, which was a type of job that is pretty hard to find in Hungary, so I had kept my eyes open for opportunities worldwide. I had set special filters on Linkedin for the type of work and location I was interested in and that’s how the perfect opportunity has showed up in March. Since I had already been talking to Architect-US, I was confident to approach the company and tell them I can be eligible to work in the US, as part of the Exchange Visitor program. The interview process has three stages and was very thorough, as they haven’t had anyone coming from overseas before and it was strange to consider an expert from Europe to join the firm. Fortunately, it is hard to find experts in the field they were looking for in NYC, so thanks to my unique experience in emerging IT technology in architecture, I was the perfect fit for the role and the professional experience I have gained in Hong Kong has helped a great deal to win the trust of this firm. Hong Kong has also helped me to be confident about my value, as an employee, when I presented myself to an architectural firm in NYC!
Tip: emergency processing
Here is a useful tip, if you are running short on time, but you only have a visa appointment 3-4 weeks after you have received your FEDEX package: ask for emergency processing. The DS-7002, which is your training plan-TIPP, contains the start date of your program, so you can upload it at the embassy website to prove you need an appointment faster. I have managed to bring forward my appointment with two full weeks! The embassy in Budapest, Hungary has immediately accepted my request and offered an earlier appointment, so I could book my flight and get ready for my adventure in New York City! I am so excited!