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IT Support, Technical Writing, and the Engineeer Visa

Joined
Nov 22, 2014
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I came back to the US a few months ago after spending five years doing English-related work in Japan. I want to go back to do IT support/networking under an engineer visa. I'm qualified for the work; My Japanese is around N2, I have 2-3 years of IT work experience, and I will have 2-3 major IT certifications by the time I'm ready to apply. I was contacted by IT recruiters when I was in Japan who didn't apparently do their due diligence in checking to see if I was eligible to do majority IT work there. As far as I understand, I don't qualify for an engineer visa because my majors were in humanities, I have less then 10 years (!) of IT work experience, and they don't take certifications into account.

So, the easiest way for me to qualify would be to get an IT-related degree. I've narrowed down my choices to Technical Writing and Computer Science. The most realistic work I could find at first would be doing bilingual IT support. I would prefer to take Technical Writing because of the possibility of working location and hours flexibility, and Computer Science has prerequisites of Calc 1 and 2, so it'd be much more of a pain in the *** in total.

My question is, if I choose the Technical Writing and Communication BS, and then try to get sponsored by a company that wants me to do IT support or networking, will immigration state that I don't qualify to do IT support since technical writing is not related enough to the job role? How strict are they regarding this?
 
Joined
Nov 22, 2014
Messages
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Thanks for the post OP, I'm in a very similar situation. It looks like you should have a BS or an MS rather than a BA or MA, because it seems to be what immigration looks for. You could have an BA in Computer Science and end up with a Spec. in Humanities. I don't have any concrete evidence for this, but I did find two (seemingly) different bloggers who ended up with the wrong visa because of this. Sorry, I only kept one of the links:

http://rextang.net/blogs/work/archive/2006/11/22/4475.aspx

Good luck!
 
Joined
Nov 22, 2014
Messages
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I see....thanks for the info! I did some research yesterday and found that it would actually be better for me to go to grad school and get a MS in tech writing as it's only 30 credits. I couldn't actually start the MS until Fall 2015, and I could start the BS in tech writing in January 2015, but I'd need around 45 credits to finish that, so I'd just be paying more money to slog through an extra semester of lower level classes to get a lower degree and finish at around the same time as I could the MS.

So all I have to do is take the GRE, get accepted into the MS program, hammer out the 30 credits in two semesters, and then I'll have the magic MS that should allow me to get the engineer visa which would allow me to do a broad range of IT work in Japan it seems. Passing the N2 exam in Dec 2015 wouldn't hurt either. This is all going to take a lot of money - I don't want to be working while I'm back in school. I better get crackin'!
 
Joined
May 12, 2013
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I see....thanks for the info! I did some research yesterday and found that it would actually be better for me to go to grad school and get a MS in tech writing as it's only 30 credits. I couldn't actually start the MS until Fall 2015, and I could start the BS in tech writing in January 2015, but I'd need around 45 credits to finish that, so I'd just be paying more money to slog through an extra semester of lower level classes to get a lower degree and finish at around the same time as I could the MS.

So all I have to do is take the GRE, get accepted into the MS program, hammer out the 30 credits in two semesters, and then I'll have the magic MS that should allow me to get the engineer visa which would allow me to do a broad range of IT work in Japan it seems. Passing the N2 exam in Dec 2015 wouldn't hurt either. This is all going to take a lot of money - I don't want to be working while I'm back in school. I better get crackin'!
Good luck, it's great to see you have a plan!
 
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