The Go-to Resource for Japanese Jobs in the US

This list was curated by Phylicia Bishop (LinkedIn). 

Table of Contents (updated: 6/2024)

  • Recruiters
  • Job Boards & Job Fairs
  • Business Societies
  • Governmental Organizations & Visas
  • Programs That Get You to Japan
    • Employment Opportunities
    • Exchanges/Fellowships/Scholarships (General)
    • Exchanges/Fellowships/Scholarships (for University Students)
  • Japanese Language Tests & Programs
  • Translation & Interpretation
  • Cultural Organizations

If you want to work specifically in Japan, don’t forget to check out the Japan Resources page. 

Regardless of the country you want to live in, be sure to see the Online Resources page for informative websites, YouTube channels, podcasts, apps, and more!


Graphic for the US JET Alumni Association
JETwit website graphic
Hand with business card or meishi

Note: If you are an HR Representative or Recruiter, please click here to see how you can find candidates via Nihongo Jobs, the job board for Japanese jobs in the USA.


US-based recruiters for Japanese bilinguals — while many of these websites are in Japanese, job listings are posted in English (unless otherwise noted).

  • Activ8 Recruitment: Activ8 supports job seekers to find bilingual roles in various parts of the US and Japan. 
  • Bond Consultants: This agency showcases jobs mainly in Georgia, Illinois, Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan and Pennsylvania.
  • Cinter Career: A full-service recruiting company that has positions nationwide and offers career advice.
  • DSA: This agency’s recruiting consultants conduct nationwide and international searches for multinational corporations in a variety of industries. Jobs not listed on their website.
  • HRAIT: A recruiting firm with job listings from all across the US with a focus on California, New York, and Hawaii.
  • Interesse International Inc.: Interesse International provides HR and employment services within the US and between Japan and the US. Job listings can be found on their website, and they have offices throughout the US as well as in Tokyo.
  • Pasona: Pasona offers positions throughout the US (with many positions in California/New York State), with several offices nationwide. To access their site for job seekers, click 求職者様はこちらから. Search their (mainly English) job listings by clicking お仕事検索.
  • QUICK USA: Very helpful recruiter with positions throughout the US.
  • TOP US: Recruiting firm with jobs across the US and many positions in California. TOP has offices in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Houston, and Cincinnati.

Recruiters with a regional/state focus, but may also offer positions elsewhere:

New York State/Tri-State Area

  • Actus Consulting: Listings for positions nationwide, though they have a higher concentration of jobs in New York City. Site is in Japanese, but most job listings are in English.
  • Alpha Global Search: New York-based recruiter with most positions in/near NY state. They focus on recruitment for Financial Services as well as identifying senior management and professionals in key areas in the corporates.
  • APA International Placement Consultants LLC: New York-based recruiter with most positions in NYC.
  • A-Staffing Inc: New York-based recruiter with most positions in NYC.
  • MAX Consulting Group: Mainly offers positions in the greater New York area, with positions in other countries as well.
  • Takumi Job: IT-centric recruiter based in NYC with mostly jobs in the greater New York area but elsewhere as well.
  • Up Recruiters, Inc.: Recruiting firm with jobs in a variety of industries mainly in the tri-state area.


  • Ejobs International, Inc.: Bay-area, registration required — no listings posted on their website
  • Interplace: For candidates ranging from entry to executive level, with skills set from clerical to highly technical. Mainly positions in California, but have positions across the US.
  • iSearch: Recruiting and consulting firm based in San Francisco.
  • Teruko Weinberg, Inc.: Recruiter with positions mostly in Los Angeles and Southern California.


  • Recruiter for mainly Seattle and Portland area positions that are also posted on their website.

Midwest (MI, OH, IL)

Job Boards & Job Fairs

  • Nihongo Jobs: Ikigai Connections’ very own job board focuses on the niche bilingual and bicultural market in all industries outside of Japan, listing many opportunities with US employers. In addition to searching the listings, job seekers can add their resume to the talent database, and hear about the latest postings by following them on social media and signing up for their weekly newsletter. (Home > Job Board)
  • JETWit: Serves as a career center with regular job postings, in addition to being an alumni magazine and communication channel for JET alumni worldwide.
  • USJETAA Job Board: The US JET Alumni Association has great opportunities for the JET community on their job board, but it is a helpful resource even if you haven’t been on JET.
  • NichiBei Connect: Created by JUSFC in an effort to help Americans and Japanese who have lived, worked, or studied in one another’s country to pursue professional development and stay connected with Japan/the US. The website is an updated, searchable database of opportunities in the field of US-Japan relations, with information about US-Japan related jobs, internships, scholarships, and fellowships.
  • DISCO International (CareerForum.Net): This company sponsors career forums in Boston and Los Angeles, offering the opportunity for job-seeking students and professionals to apply and connect with a wide array of companies that are currently hiring Japanese-English bilinguals. (Home > Career Forum) Their website also maintains a database of jobs in the US. They offer free services: With CFN Scout, you can upload your resume to the system to have employers find you. Their CFN Agent service introduces jobseekers to various job openings not available at their career forums, and you can consult with professional agents on the job application process.
  • Mynavi USA: Mynavi USA offers their periodic job fair, the Mynavi Global Career Expo, in the US, although the content appears to be largely Japanese-only. They do have English-language search options on their website for jobs in Japan (Home > Company Search). They also offer their Global Agent Placement service which helps job seekers find work in Japan.

Business Societies

Japan business societies’ members consist of Japanese companies and companies doing business with Japan — making them a great resource for bilingual/bicultural job seekers. Some business societies even have a directory of member companies listed on their website (while many websites are in Japanese, member directory entries are usually in English). In addition to supporting their members, these organizations have various activities such as funding Japanese language schools for native Japanese children.

Governmental Organizations & Visas

  • Embassy of Japan in the United States of America: Both the embassy and consulate websites (see below) offer information on Japanese visas and Japan-related resources such as studying in Japan, immigration, living in Japan, community events, US-Japan relations, and foreign policy.
  • Japan Consulate Guide: If you are searching for a consulate for a particular area, here you’ll find a map of consulates and their jurisdictions. Aside from consular services, consulates can be a great resource to start with for finding information for all things Japan in your area.
  • Japan External Trade Organization (JETRO) USA: Non-profit organization that provides support services to companies entering or expanding in the Japanese market. Their US offices are in Atlanta, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, New York, and San Francisco. Each offers a full range of business support services as well as industry-specific exhibits, seminars, and webinars for networking and partnership purposes.
  • US Department of State — Bureau of Consular Affairs: Many non-US citizens need a visa in order to work and live in the US — this is the government’s official website for all visa information. Find out what visa type is appropriate for you by using their Visa Wizard. (Home > US Visas)

Programs That Get You to Japan

Employment Opportunities

  • Japan Exchange and Teaching (JET) Program: Founded in 1987, JET sends participants from around the globe to work in schools, boards of education, and government offices throughout Japan. Managed by the government of Japan, the program offers a unique cultural exchange opportunity to meet people from all around the world, living and working in Japan. JET accepts applications yearly in fall, with departure in summer the following year.
  • Interac: Company which dispatches Assistant Language Teachers (ALTs) to local schools. They also recruit at various locations across the US. Being the largest ALT dispatch company, they offer positions in many places throughout Japan.
  • AEON: Eikaiwa (English language school chain) which has locations in all of Japan’s 47 prefectures. They also recruit at various locations across the US.
  • The Experiment in International Living: Offers short-term opportunities to go to Japan in summer as a Group Leader for US youth. The application submission deadline is in January. (Homepage > Apply > Become a Group Leader)
  • CIS Abroad: Study Abroad & Intern Abroad Programs: Opportunities to work on-site in Japan supporting exchange programs for US college students.  CISabroad provides faculty led programs for colleges and universities across the US, providing the logistics and staff support to facilitate the international course, allowing the faculty member to focus on the academic portion of the trip. Program details vary based on the needs of the institution. (Homepage > Why CIS Abroad > Careers at CIS Abroad)

Exchanges/Fellowships/Scholarships (General)

  • Japanese Government (MEXT) Scholarship Program: Since 1954, the Government of Japan’s Ministry of Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology (MEXT or Monbukagakusho) has provided scholarships to assist students in studying at Japanese universities. They offer 4 different scholarships, the one with the highest age limit being 35. Scholarship benefits include a monthly stipend of 117,000 yen, airfare to/from Japan, and exemption of school fees such as tuition. (See “MEXT Scholarship Information” on the English homepage)
  • Inter-University Center for Japanese Language Studies: The Center, located in Yokohama, is the premier American program for the teaching of advanced Japanese and is intended for those embarking on careers in Japanese studies or a profession in which fluent Japanese is necessary. Both university students and professionals are eligible for programs, with durations from 3 weeks to 10 months. Some funding opportunities are limited to citizens of the US and other selected countries. In addition to being the only program in the world focused exclusively on advanced Japanese language training, the IUC is the only program offering specialized language courses in business, economics/politics, law, history, literature, anthropology, and art.
  • Japan-US Friendship Commission: JUSFC is a federal agency with the mission to sustain the US-Japan relationship by promoting Japan Studies, and collaborative institutional efforts, partnerships, and people-to-people exchanges. Offers US-Japan Creative Artists Fellowship Program for artists to spend 3 to 5 months in Japan and Fellowship for Advanced Social Science Research on Japan.
  • Japan Center for International Exchange: JCIE/USA, the US branch of this nonprofit, strengthens the foundations of US-Japan relations and deepens international cooperation. JCIE/USA works in close partnership with JCIE/Japan in Tokyo, organizing exchanges for American and Japanese political leaders, sponsoring policy dialogues, and building ties among nonprofit organizations. Their programs include the US-Japan Journalism Fellowship, US Congressional Staff Exchange, US-Japan Parliamentary Exchange, and US-Japan Young Political Leaders Exchange.
  • U.S.-Japan Conference on Cultural and Educational Interchange (CULCON): CULCON’s site lists a plethora of different exchanges and fellowships as well as additional US-Japan resources. Exchanges/fellowships fall under the following categories: Arts and Culture, Grassroots, Intellectual, Professional, Youth, as well as for levels of education from high school to graduate school. (Home > US-Japan Resources > Exchanges and Fellowships)
  • Sasakawa USA: Sasakawa Peace Foundation USA is a nonprofit striving to deepen understanding and strengthen the relationship between the US and Japan within the Asia-Pacific context, with a focus on security and diplomacy, through exchanges, dialogue, analysis, and networking. They offer delegations, exchanges, and fellowships related to policy and journalism, as well as their Congressional Fellowship Program.
  • U.S.-Japan Council: Nonprofit educational organization that brings together leaders of the US and Japan from across backgrounds, sectors, and generations to partner for a better future for the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. The Council was founded by Japanese Americans and encourages their engagement in activities contributing to US-Japan relations as well. They offer programs such as delegations and scholarships. (Home > Programs)
  • Kakehashi Project: Government-funded grassroots exchange program that brings groups of Americans to Japan, partnering with cooperating organizations to create seven to ten day trips based on each group’s interests. These engaging, focused, and customized experiences allow participants to meet and learn directly from Japanese counterparts who share their enthusiasm and expertise. Participants apply newly gained perspective and knowledge to their given fields or classrooms. (Information under the “Links” section of English home page)
  • TOMODACHI Initiative: This initiative was born out of support for Japan’s recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake and invests in the next generation of Japanese and American leaders through educational and cultural exchanges as well as leadership programs. TOMODACHI offers opportunities to study abroad, learn about and develop enduring interest in each other’s cultures, and give the next generation of entrepreneurs and young leaders access to skills and expertise that will guide them towards success. (Home > Programs & Activities)
  • Japan Foundation, New York: The Japan Foundation strives for comprehensive and effective development of its international cultural exchange programs, with a focus on arts & cultural exchange, Japanese studies, and Japanese-language education. Offers fellowships for Japanese studies, research on Japanese art, and research for interdisciplinary scholars/graduate students, as well as training programs for Japanese language teachers. (Home > Grants)
  • Japan Foundation, Los Angeles: An extensive list of grants, study abroad scholarships, and other opportunities. (Home > Grants > Other Grants)
  • The Japan-US Teacher Exchange Program for Education for Sustainable Development (ESD): This program provides US teachers and administrators with the opportunity to travel to Japan in summer to learn about Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) efforts and strengthen ESD curricula in both countries. Fully-funded (aside from a few meals) and open to those working full-time in K-12 schools and able to meet other requirements. (Search via Home > Find a Program)
  • NichiBei Connect: Created by JUSFC in an effort to help Americans and Japanese who have lived, worked, or studied in one another’s country to pursue professional development and stay connected with Japan/the US. The website is an updated, searchable database of opportunities in the field of US-Japan relations, with information about US-Japan related jobs, internships, scholarships, and fellowships.
  • Scholarships, Fellowships, and Grants for JET Alumni (US JET Alumni Association): Some of the benefits of going on the JET Program are the variety of support you can access post-JET, including scholarships for graduate school and other funding! (Home > Resources > Scholarships, Fellowships, and Other Opportunities)

Exchanges/Fellowships/Scholarships (for University Students)

  • Bridging Foundation: The Bridging Foundation awards scholarships of up to $5,000 to US undergraduate students to study for one semester or academic year in Japan.
  • Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program: The Critical Language Scholarship (CLS) Program is a fully-funded study abroad opportunity for American college students. The program is held in summer and applications are due in the fall. 
  • Boren Scholarship/Fellowship: US government-supported funding for undergraduates studying abroad and graduate students researching/studying language — open to applicants planning a US government-focused career. Awards are determined by duration abroad, with up to $25,000 in funding. Application deadline is in January/February.
  • Fulbright US Student Program: Fulbright offers study/research awards for graduating seniors at the undergraduate level to pursue language study and independent research at local universities. Awards are also available for graduate students (including those who have graduated within three years of the time of application) to conduct research in certain areas of study in social sciences, the humanities, and arts. Application deadlines range from late summer to early fall.
  • Study Abroad in Japan Resources (American Assoc. of Teachers of Japanese): An information hub for Japanese teachers in the US, this site also has a very extensive list of study abroad programs and financial aid resources. (Home > Study in Japan)
  • The Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs’ USA Study Abroad branch launched this one-stop resource for information on language scholarships and training programs offered by the federal government. The site offers an interactive quiz you can take to find the Japanese language program that fits your goals.
  • Japan-America Student Conference: A three-week academic, cultural interchange and professional networking program in which Japanese and American college students live, travel, work, and study together in a conference-like setting. The conference country alternates yearly between Japan and the US.
  • CET Academic Programs: Intensive Japanese language programs in Osaka for college and gap year students, with virtual, summer, and semester options. Scholarships also available.
  • Kyoto Consortium for Japanese Studies: A consortium of 13 American universities with a study abroad program located at Doshisha University in Kyoto. Students from a university outside the consortium are also welcome to apply.
  • Japan Center for Michigan Universities: A consortium of 15 public universities in Michigan with study abroad programs in Japan. Participating students study language and culture at the Center located on the shore of Lake Biwa. Students outside Michigan are also welcome to apply and participate.
  • Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (Earlham College): Earlham’s undergraduate program offers opportunities for students to gain first-hand experience in language teaching in such settings as a middle school in Japan, and Earlham’s Teaching English in Japan program gives college graduates a two-year experience of living and working in Iwate and Tochigi Prefectures. (Home > Academics > Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages)

Japanese Language Tests & Programs

  • Japanese Language Proficiency Test (JLPT): The JLPT is the most well-known test for evaluating and certifying Japanese language proficiency for non-native speakers. The test covers language knowledge, reading ability, and listening ability. The JLPT is held once a year in December at over a dozen test sites throughout the US.
  • Business Japanese Proficiency Test (BJT) (Japanese site)/BJT (English site): Kasia’s favorite test! Designed to objectively measure a non-native speaker’s practical communicative skills in a Japanese-language business environment. The BJT differs from the JLPT in not measuring Japanese language knowledge but rather measuring one’s communicative ability to utilize and respond to given information, ability to express thoughts and opinions, and at the same time promote ideas or projects to people of different backgrounds and expertise. (Please note that the Japanese link may have the most up to date information.) (Testing locations: Chicago, New York City, Los Angeles) 
  • Kanji Kentei (Japan Kanji Aptitude Test/KanKen): Exam that tests one’s ability to read and write kanji, understand their meanings, use them correctly in sentences, and identify their correct stroke order. Although the test was originally intended for native Japanese speakers, non-native speakers may also take the tests. This page lists their test sites in the US — testing dates depend on the hosting organization and you’ll have to inquire with them for more information.
  • Japan Foundation, Los Angeles: JFLA’s website offers Japanese study resources, a database of schools where you can study Japanese, lists of recommended educational manga, resources for teachers, and more. Their center in LA also offers reasonably priced Japanese courses with teachers who have been trained in the JF Standard. (Home > Japanese Education)
  • Hinoki Foundation: The go-to resource for anything Japanese language education related for K-12 students and their instructors, inc. a list of Michigan high schools and colleges that offer Japanese language courses, free online language resources, and a free newsletter.
  • J.LIVE Talk: J.LIVE (Japanese Learning Inspired Vision and Engagement) Talk was founded in 2015 as a Japanese language presentation competition that emphasizes a comprehensive range of learned communication skills. The competition is open to high school and college students studying Japanese who meet certain criteria. (Home > News & Events > J.LIVE Talk)
  • Lighthouse Japanese University Guide: University information for students from abroad, with Japanese College Fairs every May and November held in major cities like Los Angeles, San Diego, San Francisco, Honolulu, Chicago and New York.
  • Middlebury Institute of International Studies: Graduate school in Monterey, California committed to preparing students for professional roles in cross-cultural, multilingual environments. They offer 12 master’s degree programs with an international focus. Directly language-related programs (second language proficiency may be required): Master of Arts in Teaching Foreign Language, Master of Arts in Translation and Localization Management, and Master of Arts in Translation; Translation and Interpretation; Conference Interpretation.

Translation & Interpretation

  • American Translators Association: The Japanese Language Division of ATA serves as a means of communication among its members and provides information and services to its members in specific fields of interest related to translation from and into the Japanese language. Their offerings include events, resources, and an online community. Membership is complimentary for current ATA members.
  • Suzuki Myers & Associates: Provides Japanese<>English interpreting, translation, and other services to the Metro Detroit/Southeast Michigan region and other locations, both domestic and international. They hire interpreters, translators, and Japanese instructors as well as instructors of English for native Japanese speakers.
  • Transperfect: A family of companies providing language services and technology solutions for global business with over 100 offices and 6,000 employees. They offer internal and freelance positions.
  • WeLocalize Localization company with offices in New York City and Portland, OR with in-house and freelance opportunities.
  • Simon Fraser University Japanese/English Translation Workshop: Held at SFU in Vancouver, BC for current and aspiring freelance translators. SFU’s Japanese/English Translation Workshop has been preparing translators for successful careers for more than 10 years. The instructor has extensive experience in both the classroom and the industry and will offer step by step guidance through the world of professional translation.

Cultural Organizations

Inquire about employment and volunteering opportunities at the Japanese businesses/organizations listed here.

  • National Association of Japan-America Societies: Non-profit consisting of 38 independent Japan-America Societies throughout the US and Canada — their diverse membership makes them the largest private network supporting bilateral relations in the US. NAJAS offers public affairs, business, cultural, and educational programs about Japan and US-Japan relations to the general public through their member societies. Be sure to find your local Japan-America Society through this website. (Home > Societies/Centers)
  • Japan Foundation, Los Angeles/Japan Foundation, New York: Japanese government agency promoting arts, culture, and language worldwide. Both NY and LA offices host a variety of cultural events, and offer scholarships, grants, and educational resources (see listings under aforementioned categories for more information). Their center in Los Angeles is open to the public and offers 8,000 volumes of books and magazines on Japan and 2,000 audio visual materials.
  • Japan Society: Leading organization committed to deepening mutual understanding between the US and Japan for over 100 years, serving audiences in the US and abroad through programs in arts and culture, public policy, business, language and education. They host over 200 events annually, including exhibitions, performing arts, film, workshops, tastings, language classes, and high-profile talks and expert panels. Their facilities in NYC include a theater, art gallery, language center, library, and conference rooms. Also, check out their opportunities for internships, volunteering, and more. (Home > About > Employment Opportunities) 
  • U.S.-Japan Council: Nonprofit educational organization that brings together leaders of the US and Japan from across backgrounds, sectors, and generations to partner for a better future for the Asia-Pacific region and beyond. The Council was founded by Japanese Americans and encourages their engagement in activities contributing to US-Japan relations as well. They host many events such as webinars which are open to the public.
  • Japanese American Cultural & Community Center: Hub for Japanese and Japanese American arts and culture (traditional and contemporary) and community gathering place — JACCC connects community participants and creative professionals, and Southern California and beyond. Their campus in Little Tokyo in LA even has a Japanese Garden.
  • US JET (Japan Exchange Teaching Program) Alumni Association: US JETAA has 19 chapters across the country offering programs and events for alumni, their families, and the broader non-alumni community. (Home > About > JETAA Chapters) US JETAA’s website has a job board and often hosts webinars (career related and otherwise). Local chapters host many events which often don’t require JET affiliation to join.
  • TOMODACHI Initiative: This initiative was born out of support for Japan’s recovery from the Great East Japan Earthquake and invests in the next generation of Japanese and American leaders through educational and cultural exchanges as well as leadership programs. TOMODACHI offers opportunities to study abroad, learn about and develop enduring interest in each other’s cultures, and give the next generation of entrepreneurs and young leaders access to skills and expertise that will guide them towards success.
  • Kizuna Across Cultures (KAC): Seeks to make a long-term impact to inspire youth in the US and Japan to become global citizens who contribute to world peace and help solve global issues. KAC engages students through their innovative language and cultural exchange program to cultivate mutual understanding of the differences in cultures and values and help students learn to express themselves and their own culture.
  • U.S.-Japan Conference on Cultural and Educational Interchange (CULCON): CULCON (based in DC) offers a summer internship to support their current initiatives, which include activities promoting US-Japan cultural, educational, and people-to-people exchange. This opportunity is available for current undergraduate/graduate students considering a career in US-Japan relations. (Home > About > Internship Program)
  • Sasakawa USA: Paid internship opportunities during the fall, spring, and summer semesters (for current students/recent grads), Japanese language ability preferred but not required. Volunteer opportunities as well. (Home > About Us > Careers)
  • New York de Volunteer: This Japanese volunteer organization aims to enhance global understanding and strengthen ties with Japan through US-Japan cross cultural exchange activities and programs in the New York City Area. Some of their activities include hosting students and professionals from Japan and teaching Japanese culture to underserved children (they have taught Japanese culture to thousands of children and teens in the NYC area). This is a great way to keep up your Japanese!
  • Lighthouse Magazine: Free monthly local magazine published in Japanese (also available in print — you can pick up a copy at Japan-related businesses). Offers news and local information as well as classifieds with job postings and more.

Be sure to reach out to Phylicia Bishop on LinkedIn. If you have any other suggestions to be added to this list, please submit them here.

Don’t forget to check out the other Resource pages, too! The Japan page is all about working in Japan. The Online Resource page is all about culture, language and job search tips, regardless of your home country.

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