I'm an international graduate student in the US and my internship has converted to a full-time offer, offering a new grad role as an SRE. I have 3+ years of experience in the field before I enrolled myself in the masters program (worked as an SRE in my home country). Does this fact grant me wiggle room for negotiation? I expect to be offered what engineers having 3+ years of experience in the same field in the US would. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

  • It's an offer. You can always try to negotiate wages; they can always say no
    – keshlam
    Commented Aug 10, 2023 at 5:17

1 Answer 1


Can you try to use it to negotiate a higher salary? Sure.

Will you be successful? Probably not, although it depends on the hiring manager.


As a general rule, experience only matters after you are qualified. This is because the 'experience' you have gained before getting qualified is training, it doesn't really 'count'.

Now - that all said, by all means put it forward in the negotiation. If you have some real-world projects that you can talk about what you did in order to add weight to your request, even better. Likely though, you will get above a new grad with no experience, but not to the level of a 3 year experienced SRE. If you get offered anything in the ballpark of 1-1.5 years experience, I'd probably take it.

  • The author had 3 years prior to becoming a graduate student and becoming an intern. I don’t disagree with your answer necessarily as they are now in a full time position meant for an experienced intern
    – Donald
    Commented Aug 6, 2023 at 22:26
  • @Donald - yeah, it really does depend on the Hiring Manager. Me, personally, I wouldn't count that as experience per se as if you weren't qualified, the likelyhood you'd be doing things on your own or projects of significant importance is small - so it's not comparable to what I'd consider 3 years experience. Different Hiring Managers may disagree. Commented Aug 6, 2023 at 23:00
  • @TheDemonLord my internship manager/mentor vouches and attests to the fact that an L4 role suits me instead of L3 (which is new grad).
    – Souvik Dey
    Commented Aug 7, 2023 at 15:38

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