Hi everyone, it's Sherlyn. Many of you will have noticed that things have somewhat slowed down at Twenty3, and you were probably wondering what's been going on over here.____I've been taking time off this year to focus on my mental health. As great a job that my team has been doing in running the company during this time, it has become apparent that it cannot keep doing that forever without a proper leader in charge. As much as I hate to admit it, Twenty3 is me.
____I started the company from my boyfriend's bedroom with nothing, and somehow grew it to be one of the most recognizable fashion brands in the country! As recently as last year, I was still doing everything: from modeling, to managing our manufacturers, to planning marketing and promotions. Twenty3 was my baby, and I put my soul into it for every single exhausting day and sleepless night for the last 5 years. I've cried so many tears over it, through social media firestorms and our KLFW debut. And through it all, I've had to act tough and happy on Instagram.
____The truth is, I'm not tough. I've been fighting depression my whole life. Officially, I was diagnosed with persistent depressive disorder and severe anxiety just last year. I'm still undergoing therapy and taking medication daily, but I know it's still just the beginning. I've had many setbacks in my recovery this year alone, even though I'm not even going to the office anymore. Once the mind has broken, it's very easy to shatter again, but I'm trying very hard to hold it together.
That's why I feel like I can no longer lead the company that I built, and I've taken the difficult decision to wind down the company to focus on my own recovery. The team has been incredible and very supportive throughout this time, but a small company like ours needs a strong captain to navigate this difficult industry.I am sad, but I'm also very proud of what we've achieved. No one can take that away from us.____To those who stood by us, I'll forever be grateful that you believed in us. Thank you.Coincidentally, the leases for our retail stores are all ending at around the same time: Atria has just closed, Sunway will close in the middle of this month, and Publika early next month. So if you're looking for some great deals, this will be your last chance to own anything by Twenty3 :')
Finally, i'm writting about this...
The reason that i did not write this earlier is because i need 100% information from the agency so that i won't confuse u.
Since i had been in USM for 3 days, i can memorize the whole thing already! lolzz
so if u have any question, just email me..i'll do my best to help u..
#1 U must be a student(undergraduate/pursuing master degree)
If u want to join this program, u must have a student status letter..
which means, u must be a student (undergraduate).
The last chance that u can join this program is before ur graduation.
U can apply before u gradute n go after u graduate.
However, there will be a risk that u might not be able to get the USA visa cz they usually scared that people will *jump aeroplane*
*not coming bac on due date*
but anyway, u need not to be too worry cz a lot of students apply before their graduation n go after their graduation..like me n bear~
Well, if u r now a master student or if u r goin to pursue master degree, u r eligible for this program too.
However, u must be <30 years old and already there for atleast 1 semester.
#2 Understand the program and talk to your parents
2.1 How long u can stay in the US
Students can stay in the US for 6 months the most.
U r allowed to work for 2-4 months and travel for 1 month (maximum)
U can deicde which date that u wan to go and come bac to Malaysia.
Everything is up to ur own decision. Like me, i went there in Sept 2010 and came bac to Malaysia on 3rd of Jan.
Which means, i work for 3 months and travel for 1 month.
U can decide how many months u want to work n how many days u wan to travel.
2.2 Which batch should I join for the WAT
ok...so this is the question tat i get in most of the time.
This program is actually open for all year long.
If u r interested to go in this year, u may join the summer/fall batch.
Summer batch starts from May to Sept while fall batch starts from Oct till Dec.
I'm not really sure for the fall batch. U guys can always email Out of the box for any enquiries.
but for now, if u have sem break during May till Sept, or 4 months within May till Sept, u r encouraged to join the summer batch.
2.3 When should i start applying?
The earliest u apply, the better.
Usually, for students who interested to join the summer batch, they r encouraged to apply since Nov 2010 till thereafter.
The earlier u apply, the more chance for u to get ur desired job.
but if u r late, u dont need to worry as well cz there r always job offers coming in.
2.4 Do i need to pay?
Yes. Of course.
The average total cost that u might needed is around RM10k.
RM3k = Programme fees (Processing fees, medical insurance, employment arrangement etc)
RM450 = US J1 Visa
RM4k-6k = Flight ticket, go n forth (U can either get it from OOTB or buy it urself)
USD 500 aka RM1600 = Pocket money
We r required to bring at least USD 500 into US cz we might get question wen we pass through the kastam.
This is wat i experienced wen i went through the kastam last time.
n also, u will only get ur pay check 2 weeks after u start working. Therefore, u might need some pocket money for daily expenses n transportation.
2.5 What kind of jobs available for WAT program?
My answer is : Holiday jobs!
Resort, themepark, restaurants, national park etcetc
2.6 Can I choose the job?
Yes! Once u joined the mailing list and applied with out of the box, they will send to job offerings from time to time.
U can choose from the list and response to them if u keen to.
2.7 Will the money the i earn in US able to cover the RM10k cost?
Well, it depends. But all of us managed to cover the RM10k cost.
We earned around USD 5k for 3 months. However, we spent all of the money cz we traveled to a lot of places, from east to west from west to east.
It actually depends on how many working hours that u work, did u get a 2nd job n how long u plan to travel.
The average working hours were ranged between 30-40 hours per week, USD 7-USD 10 per hour.
Some employer offers different wage for OT.
Like Grand Canyon, our previous employer, we were given about USD 11+ for every hours that exceed the basic 40 working hours.
If ur day job is not that tough, u can always go for 2nd job (find it urself at the places nearby to ur working place)
U will earn more if u get a 2nd job there. Well, we didnt get 2nd job tat time cz we already worked for 6 days per week n it's quite tiring.
n also, if u didnt travel much, u will definately bring some money back.
It really depends on how u plan ur trip n wat is most important for u~!
2.8 Where r we goin to stay?
No worries. Everything is being take care by the agency.
Usually, the accomodation will be provided by the employer.
However, u will still need to pay to the rental.
We were in Grand Canyon and the rental rate is really really low, which is around USD 16 per week only, not included meals.
The rental rate is range between USD 20-USD 100 on average.
Some employer provide free meals as well. Even if they don't, we employees always get employee discounts from the employer.
Like us, we have an employee cafe just for the employees. Every main course ranged between USD 1-USD 2.7.
It's really really cheap and the portion is very big.
Tat's the great thing working at national parks instead of working in big cities. The living cost is far away lower.
#3 Register urself with Out of the Box (OOTB)
See, there r actually 2 agencies offering this kind of service.
They r Out of the box and speedwing.
we registered to both agencies and we finally decided to go for out of the box.
The reason being is because we felt more secure with this agency cz they really take good care of us.
They will answer all questions patiently n make sure tat u understand the whole thing before u pay the agency fees.
U can email email@example.com to register so that u will get more information and updates.
#4 Basic interview session with OOTB
Once u decided to join, u can apply through their website, http://usa.workandtravelusa.com.my/ and here's the time u pay RM100 to the agency.
U will have a very basic interview session with OOTB. Most probably through phone interviews.
#5 Interview session with the US employer
Once u decided to join and pass through the phone interview, they will arrange the employer to meet up with u.
They will ask simple questions like wat's ur name, y u join this program, can u understand simple english etcetc.
It's a group interview session so need not to be to worry. Just be urself.
Once u r hired, u will need to submit the documents asap and pay the remaining agency fees, which is around RM2900.
#6 Visa interview
Once u submitted the documents and paid the remaining agency fees, they will arrange u for visa interview with US embassy at KL.
They will provide some guidelines for the interview session. Therefore, need not to be too worry. (I'm quite worry anyway haaha)
but it's not that hard..just be urself and be HONEST! this is very important! They dont wan u to have any chance to jump aeroplane!
#7 Book ur flight ticket
so yeay, once u pass ur visa interview...u can go ahead and book ur flight ticket.
OOTB will quote the price for the ticket from their travelling agecny.
BUT, if u happened to stumble across airlines sites that provided cheaper flight tickets, u can always go for it n buy it urself.
#8 U R DONE! HUAT AR!!!!!
so, now everythign is done n u can FLY now!
Enjoy ur life there kao kao cz it's like once in a life time!!!!
Important tips :
#1 Don't be too picky on the jobs la. All the jobs r almost the same. It will be tough if u always think that it is tough!
#2 Don't try to take this opportunities to jump aeroplane or search for any business opportunities in US! u will definately fail the visa interview!!!!
#3 Try to get along with friends when u r in the US! There's nobody except friends!!!
#4 Don't think too much about how much u can bring back! Try to enjoy ur life there!~
hmm i guess tat's all for now.
If u have anymore enquiries, u can always drop me a comment here or email OOTB firstname.lastname@example.org
I'm really happy to share with u my WAT experience. So, pls don't be shy to contact me. I'll try my best to explain everything that u wan to know. n of course, pls email them for 100% answers if u have any doubts! I can only explain it according to my previous experience.
For those who r going, congrtulations n enjoy ur life kao kao there.
For those who r still considering, take ur time and don't be rush. It's a 10k decision and it's a lil bit far from Malaysia.
But still, pls join if u have the chance!!!!
I would go again if i have a 2nd chance!