AFAM: Hello Christophe and thank you for finding time in your busy schedule for this short interview. You have already had several interns gadz’arts in your company. Please let us know what advantages do you see in taking Arts et Metiers students as interns?
Yes, we have had 4 gadz'arts in the last 8 years. Gadz'arts have great training, usually adapt easily and have a very pragmatic approach to problem solving. Also, interns usually bring fresh view on business process which is often needed to allow operations growth.
AFAM: All the students who worked as interns in your company had to obtain a J1 visa. Some companies are very reluctant to take J1 interns (to read more about J1 visa, you can visit our website). What would you tell to an engineer willing to take a J1 intern but being afraid to apply for a J1 visa for him/her?
Correct, interns are on J1 visa. We didn't take any interns at the beginning of the pandemic when the US embassy was closed but we had two interns in the last 6 months that could get their visa very quickly. So hopefully, things get back to normal as to interns visa.
AFAM: did COVID-19- related situation influence a lot your decision this year to take a J1 intern?
Not really, since we're selling online, we haven't been affected by COVID at business level. It was more related to activities at the us embassy in Paris who emits the visa.
AFAM: anything else you would like to advice to a company who is about/would like to hire an international student holding a J1 visa?
I think companies should always bring fresh, outside view to their business process. My main advice would be to well define the subject of the internship and the tasks for the intern so the experience can be beneficial for both the intern and the company. And also provide enough support to the intern so he can fulfill his mission.
AFAM: thank you very much for your answers to our questions! We hope that more companies will be open to J1 programs and welcome more international students ( obviously, including our gadz’arts).
If you are a company and want to hire an intern, please read our Shasta for Companies page
You can also find some useful information concerning J1 visa on our website