For every Lebanese, being able to get a job abroad is a dream. Due to the tough economic situation and social instability, and because wages are a bit low, fresh graduates, or even experienced workers, tend to apply for jobs abroad, and are willing to travel to far destinations in order to maintain a proper job.
Being able to get a job abroad is one thing, but being able to acquire a working visa to America, and experience the “American dream”, is something else. Perhaps going to the gulf is very common because they are nearby countries that provide good opportunities, yet getting a job in America, and a work permit, is the one thing nobody would say no to.
Given that American life is much different from the Lebanese, one would be surprised to how fast a Lebanese is able to adapt to that culture and way of living. Now the reason Lebanese people want a job in the US, is due to very simple inquires, such as the strong economy the United States has, the good social security system, and the facilities each company provides its employees. Also, having an experience from a US company is something that can add a lot to one’s resume, and he would have bigger chances of being accepted in any other domain.
The US also has the freedom of speech policy, which allows all kinds of people to live within its land feeling they are granted freedom that in other countries they would not dream of. Unlike Europe, the US also seems to keep -to a certain extent- an importance to family and friendship bonds; a thing that matters a lot to the Lebanese people, since in their country, they are much consumed with such bonds.
After being to the US, I got surprised to know that a lot of Americans have an ambition to work abroad, outside of America. While half of this world is acquiring visas and hoping for an American opportunity, the American people are sincerely wishing for an abroad job. There is a constant growing number of young Americans that are leaving the US to be employed in other different countries.
For a country like the US, believed to attract the best minds of the world, I find it awkward that its people are leaving and bailing out on it. There are surely many reasons behind this fact. Probably one of them is that unemployment has reached an approximate 9%, which is a big percentage in accordance to America. Young Americans feel they are not getting their fair chances to be employed in their dream job. Studies state that approximately 6.3 million young Americans have moved to work or study abroad.
A lot of the students I met, who are graduating soon, and even some who will obtain their Masters degree soon, have the plan of moving abroad. The reasons I heard, were that some of these students want to move to poorer countries and be able to offer some real on-ground help and be able to make a difference.
America is one of the most desired destinations, and I was very touched to hear young Americans ready to leave their country to be effective in making a change. True that some are leaving the US for different reasons, but there’s a good portion of them that are leaving to less civilized and poorer countries, which means they are not aiming for a better economy. Instead, they are aiming to live their American dream through the eyes of poor and helpless others. Their American dream is different than that of the others. They seek to make a change, and simply –as cliché as it sounds- “make the world a better place.”