San Francisco is an iconic American city, with its cable cars and fog-bound Golden Gate Bridge familiar to many. There are plenty of reasons why nearly a million people choose this sophisticated city as their place to live and work. It's got everything - from fantastic architecture to a passionate local food movement, the history of Alcatraz and counterculture legacy of Haight-Ashbury. Plus, it has some of the best technology jobs in America; not to mention, nearby surfing in Outer Sunset and Ocean Beach.
The ghosts of railway tycoons and millionaires linger atop Nob Hill, while trawlermen continue to ply their trade at Fisherman's Wharf and Pier 39 (a fun place to sample the local seafood). Chinatown, the largest Chinese community outside of Asia, is just one aspect of the city's vibrant multicultural heritage.
Walking around the candy-coloured townhouses of Telegraph Hill or bar-hopping in beatnik North Beach - you'll never run out of fun things to do or strange people to meet. But it's not all hippies and renegades. The wider Bay Area is home to Silicon Valley, the technology capital of the world, making San Francisco an ideal place to use your USIT 12 month visa to intern in technology, engineering, computer programming or product design.
Where to Intern
San Francisco is best known as a hub of technology, so you'll be perfectly placed to build your career in IT, multimedia, computer programming or research and development. Past participants have used their USIT graduate visa to intern in design, marketing, biomedical development, advertising and the arts. Hospitality is big too - San Francisco is, after all, one of the most visited cities in the US. With its Gold Rush roots, it's no surprise that finance remains a major industry, with multiple global banks headquartered here. San Francisco is bursting with creative, entrepreneurial individuals, so working here adds flair to your CV.
Where to Live
You're spoiled for choice of cool neighbourhoods in San Francisco. Famously multicultural, you'll find tons of restaurants, arts venues and public spaces. The Mission is home to a young, stylish population, while the Marina has a popular nightlife. SoMa (South of Market) is a favourite location of creative start-ups, while Lower Pacific Heights, Russian Hill and the area around Golden Gate Park are great spots too. To browse San Francisco apartments, try ApartmentGuide.com, SFbay.craigslist.org and RentinSanFrancisco.com.
The climate in San Francisco is typical of northern California and remains significantly cooler than southern parts of the state. Mild, with frequent fog enveloping the city, you can expect temperatures of about 20 degrees C in summer and 14 degrees C in winter. Dress in layers.