I have American cousins who work in Silicon Valley, and they all said that even fresh graduates in the US who are in the IT industry have trouble finding jobs.

More background info on me:

I have a US immigrant visa, I went there a few years ago to claim my green card, and went back here only to finish my studies because I don't want to be buried in student loans in the US. I'm going to graduate in May 2016 with a Bachelor's in Management Information Systems (It's like a hybrid of BS Computer Science and BS Management), and I have 500-hour internship experience working with the QA Engineers in a multinational company (which was once UK-based, but is now bought by a US company). It's my only work experience.

I've always wanted to migrate to San Francisco, but I'm not sure if I would even have a chance at finding a decent job there, if ever I come.

My question is, would it be a good decision to move to the US immediately after I graduate and just look for jobs there instead of staying here hoping for a location transfer? Considering I studied in a university which is not in the US? Much less, a university which isn't even in the top 400 globally? (It is in the top 500 though, and among the top 4 in my country, but I don't know if that's important to them.)

I have decent experience in my organisations in school, as I've held various positions in some. Grades-wise though, I'm only average. My major is IT-related, but I'm not really looking for programming jobs, as I don't really excel in that field. I was looking more in the fields of QA Testing, Business/Systems Analysis, Consultancy, Management, etc. The only languages I know well are Ruby and HTML+CSS. I only have fair knowledge on C#, as I've worked with a team when programming for these projects.

Do I stand a chance?

(Slightly related to this question, but not quite)

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    "Do I stand a chance?" questions can't really be answered with any degree of reliability. Hire-ability basically cannot be boiled down to a set of skills. – Atsby May 12 '15 at 2:51
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    foreign workers depress wages for native workers because they're willing to get payed less. so if you're good and a company is willing to hire foreign workers, they'd love you. – easymoden00b May 12 '15 at 12:15
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    @easymoden00b - I'm not sure that's universally true. There are plenty of countries that limit the number of foreign workers and have laws making it illegal to pay an immigrant less than the prevailing wage. You could argue that any increase in supply will lower wages, but many countries struggle to fill open positions with qualified applicants, stagnating growth. In many cases it costs a company more (in time and money) to hire an immigrant than a local. – Rob P. May 12 '15 at 14:04
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    @RobP. well Rob, OP is specifically talking about the United States and given that large companies in Silicon Valley lobby our government almost daily to lift any and all restrictions on immigration restrictions for the exact reason that it depresses wages I feel that my comment is quite warranted. – easymoden00b May 12 '15 at 14:36

San Fran is not the hub of the software development world by any means. Mainly because how expensive it would be to get the output somewhere else - double than most parts of the US and much more than some parts of the world.

Now can you get a job with your limited abilities. Well most of that will come down to two questions? Can you communicate well with a team? This is probably the #1 thing when it comes to foreign programmers starting out. If I ask you to do XYZ and give you some background info will you do it right or work off of a tangent based on what you think you heard. This applies to most American graduates too but just bringing it up in your case.

The second is how low are you willing to look? Honestly I would not pay you more than 30-35K with your limited skills right out of college. If you made that much in San Fran you would be sleeping in a car.

We have offices there and a few developers but that is only to help with local sales. I would not pay anyone in our offices in San Fran that basically knows some HTML more than someone anywhere else in the US since most basic HTML/CSS type issues would be worked on remotely. Yes you can get a job but I would expect a glorified internship until you prove yourself.

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  • Okay thank you, this helped a lot! How about QA though, for example? Are there not enough entry-level QA tester jobs around? My research told me there are, but it's not sufficient, as I would have no idea how willing they are to hire a foreigner. And I wanted to delve in to QA because that's the only field I've had more or less "real" experience in, as far as work is concerned. – potatoesandnoodles May 18 '15 at 3:34

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