COVID-19 Advice for the JCU Community - Last updated: 5 May 2022, 3pm (AEST)

International Students

JCU Careers and Employability has many career resources to assist students with their career decision making and employability.

Make the most of your Australian study experience to enhance your career opportunities.

There are few things you need to know before you begin to look for work.

Apply for a Tax File Number

This will prevent you from paying too much tax while you are working.

You are allowed to work without a tax file number, however the Australian Government will deduct 48.5% of your income if you do not have a tax file number. You can apply online.

Understand your visa conditions

It is your responsibility to understand your visa conditions. You will need to know:

  • When can you begin work?
  • How many hours your can work per fortnight during Study Periods and in the vacation?
  • What about volunteer work?  Is this part of your permitted work hours?

For working conditions for student visa holders, visit  Department of Home Affairs

Working conditions and pay

Conditions are set by the Australian Government and the law specifies the rates of pay, holidays and paid or unpaid sick leave. Further information for international students is available on the Australian Government's Fair Work website.

Additional qualifications

Some jobs will require you to have additional qualifications, including:

For more information, download our information sheet Tips for Finding Part-Time and Casual Work (PDF, 140 KB).

Please be aware that Australia's immigration policy is subject to change. The information provided here is for guidance only and should not be considered formal immigration advice.

Migration advice is available from Registered Migration Agents who charge a fee for their services. To find an agent, see Migration Agents Registration Authority.

Many international students wish to remain in Australia at the end of their course to gain work experience. It is essential to start planning early if this is your goal.

The Department of Home Affairs is an excellent source of information on how you can take advantage of the post-study work rights available to international graduates from Australian universities.

Research these other opportunities for an Australian working visa:

  • State Migration Plan - Each Australian State and Territory can sponsor General Skilled Migration applicants under a broad range of occupations to fill skills shortages within their local labour markets.
  • Queensland Government Sponsorship - The Queensland Government offers an international postgraduate alumni sponsorship scheme.
  • SkillSelect - For international graduates who wish to remain in Australia long term may apply for employer or State sponsorship and permanent residency through SkillSelect.

Many international students will return home at the end of their course. Often, your next goal will be to secure a graduate position in your home country.

Learn how to express the skills you have gained in your overseas experience. Consider skills such as flexibility, resilience, inter-cultural communication and English.

Networking is important in your job search. Keep in touch and grow your network by making the most of the contacts you made while in Australia, e.g. JCU students and staff, employers. Stay connected via LinkedIn or JCU Alumni. Seek out the local chapter of the Australian Chamber of Commerce in your home country.  Australia Global Alumni is a virtual global network that allows people to connect, build and invigorate the international community of scholars who have studied in Australia and Australians who have studied overseas.