TN Visa Status as a Vocational Counselor

The profession of Vocational Counselor is listed under the USMCA(NAFTA) professions list as a profession that qualifies for TN visa status. If you are a Canadian or Mexican Citizen with an offer of employment from a US employer as a Vocational Counselor, you might qualify to work and live in the US under TN Visa status. We discuss the profession of a Vocational Counselor for TN Visa status under the USMCA and how to qualify here.

What is a Vocational Counselor for TN Visa purposes?

According to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics Occupational Outlook Handbook (OOH), Vocational Counselors fall under the profession of Career Counselors and Advisors.  These professions as are defined follows for immigration purposes:

Career counselors and advisors typically do the following:

  • Use aptitude and achievement assessments to help students or clients evaluate their interests, skills, and abilities
  • Evaluate students’ or clients’ background, education, and training, to help them develop realistic goals
  • Guide students in making decisions about careers, such as choosing an occupation and the type of degree to pursue
  • Help students select and apply for educational programs to obtain the necessary degrees, credentials, and skills
  • Teach students or clients job-search skills, such as interviewing and networking
  • Assist clients in locating and applying for jobs, by teaching them strategies that will be helpful in finding openings and writing a résumé

The specific duties of career counselors and advisors vary by student or client.

Career coaches work with people who have already entered the workforce. These counselors develop plans with customized objectives and activities to improve their clients’ careers. They motivate their clients and support them to achieve the goals they set together. Career coaches also provide advice about entering a new occupation or helping to resolve workplace issues.

College advisors help students choose a major or determine the jobs they are qualified for with their degrees. These advisors also help people find and get jobs by teaching them job search, résumé writing, and interviewing techniques. College advisors often specialize in counseling students in one area of the college experience, such as admissions or financial aid.

Some career counselors work in outplacement firms and assist laid-off workers with transitioning into new jobs or careers.

How do I qualify for TN Visa status as a Vocational Counselor?

You might qualify for TN Visa status as a Vocational Counselor if you meet the following minimum qualifications:

  1. You are a Canadian or Mexican Citizen (Permanent Residents do NOT qualify);
  2. You have a job offer from a US employer or are servicing a contract with a US client;
  3. You will be performing duties consistent with a Career Counselor and Advisor under the OOH;
  4. You have a Baccalaureate or Licenciatura Degree in a closely-related field; and
  5. You can demonstrate that you have non-immigrant intent, in other words, the intent to return to your foreign residence at the end of your temporary employment.

Is certification or licensure required to obtain TN Visa status as a Vocational Counselor?

Some states require licensure for career counselors. However, licensure is a post-entry requirement for TN visa status and is not a requirement to obtain TN visa status as a Vocational Counselor.

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The immigration lawyers at Richards and Jurusik Immigration Law have more than 30+ years of TN Visa experience helping people to live and work in the United States. Contact us today for an assessment of your qualifications for TN Visa status as a Vocational Counselor.

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