by Ruby Munoz
While living in New York City there are some legal documents that you should have that will help make your life easier during your years at LIM college. These documents are not obligatory and some international students don’t even get them. Personally, I’ve found that having them is very helpful and they have made my life easier, which is why I am sharing this information with you.
The first document is a Social Security card. After living in New York for a while I realized that I needed a Social Security Number for almost everything I wanted to acquire. Phone plans, an apartment lease, cable, and wifi services are some of the things that I found hard to get because I didn’t have a SSN.
A Social Security Number is a nine-digit number issued to U.S. citizens, permanent residents, and temporary working residents and is authorized by the Social Security Administration. It has become a national identification number for taxation and other purposes, even though its main objective is to track individuals for Social Security purposes.
The best and easiest way to get you SSN is by working on-campus. Since we are intentional students and most of us came here with a student visa, we're not allowed to work off-campus if we haven’t been living here for at least a year. After that year, we are allowed to have paid internships only if we are enrolled in an internship class and if we are receiving credit for it. And, as international students we can only work a maximun of 20 hours a week.
Internships won’t help you get a SSN, but LIM will. After you apply for an on-campus job and get it, your employer will give you some legal paper work to fill out and then you’ll only have to go to the Social Security Administration department to get your SSN. The process is very easy and simple. You just have to bring the documents LIM will give you, your passport, and in less than 30 minutes you will have your SSN.
I encourage you to work on-campus because there are a lot of benefits. You’ll not only get real work experience to put on your resume, but your life will also get easier because you’ll have a SSN. LIM offers a wide variety of part-time jobs for students. Some of them only require ten hours a week or even less.
Right now I’m working four hours a week at the Institutional Research Office, but I’ve had three different jobs on-campus. I’ve been a math tutor, a research assistant, and now I’m a blogger. Being a blogger is the job I like the most because it is actually fun. I get to write and photograph my experiences at LIM, and at the same time help incoming international students with questions they might have.
In addition to getting an SSN, I recommend you also open a bank account with a debit and a credit card, and use the credit card as much as you can so you'll be able to start having a U.S. credit history which will also help you when leasing an apartment.
If you have any questions or concerns you can write a comment and I will answer you in the next few days. Hope you have a fabulous studying fashion at the best city in the world!