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354: Designing on a Visa ft. Yitong Zhang

This week, we caught up with Yitong Zhang to talk about what it's like to navigate the visa process in the US. We dig into the details of different work visas, the constraints they impose on designers, and what is changing in the current processes. This, plus bonus questions and cool things as always!


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The Sidebar:

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In this week's Sidebar, we ask Yitong some bonus questions at the end of the interview:

  • What is the most under-rated skill for designers?
  • What is the most over-rated skill for designers?
  • Do you find that your success thus far is mostly the result of luck or hard work?

Interview with Yitong Zhang:

Notes from Yitong
21:18 It's only easy to change jobs as an H-1B holder if you are transferring to a company that already does H-1Bs and you're doing the same job. For example, if you're an engineer transitioning into design, that would be difficult.

21:46 You can only change jobs in the while in the green card queue if your job is not changing by more than a certain amount. This is especially difficult for people in the 10 year queue because it's not really possible to have same job for that long. So what you have to do is to re-prove to the government that your new job is not gonna take an American's opportunity (which is a year long process).

23:10 To be more specific, in most scenarios you get 60 days to find a new job.

33:05 & 20:20 Employment-based green cards require extensive proof that an immigrant's presence will not compete with American jobs, while visas require some proof, but less of it.

36:10 I think this points system only exists in Canada for permanent residencies aka Canadian green cards. Work visas Canada are even more straight forward.


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