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Teaching overseas can be a great experience - countless articles and blog posts provide advice on how to find the perfect job teaching abroad and what an amazing experience teaching overseas can be.

Yesterday, I just got back from a whirlwind trip to Detroit, Michigan for my sister’s elopement. At the check in for my flight, I noticed a nervous young man who looked to be in his very early 20s. As I stood at the automatic check in waiting for my boarding pass to print, I overheard him talking to an older man whom I guessed was his dad.

So, you have followed my advice from previous blog posts – you wrote a great resume and found an awesome job. You got your visa and are getting ready to embark on the experience of a lifetime. Here are some tips from someone who has both taught abroad and vicariously experienced the successes and occasional failure of many other teachers through my job as a recruiter.

My Korean Mom

One of the most hilarious blogs I’ve ever run across after living in South Korea as a foreign teacher was “Stuff Korean Moms Like” on Blogspot.

Before I accepted my overseas teaching assignment in South Korea, I never realized that Korea would have so many amazing foods that I would grow to love so much. As a result of my three years as an expat ESL teacher American ESL teacher, both my husband and I fell completely in love with many everyday Korean foods.

In my last article I covered how to write a resume for teaching English abroad. This week I’d like to cover some conventional and non-conventional job seeking strategies you can employ to help you find a great job teaching abroad. Many of these same strategies are also applicable to the domestic, non-teaching job market as well.

I’ve been recruiting ESL teachers for nearly 15 years. Over the last decade and a half I have looked at tens of thousands of resumes and helped many thousands of individuals find work teaching English abroad. I have also come to the conclusion that most individuals seeking work as ESL teachers, or seeking work in general, have no idea how or even why to write a resume.

After trying to explain to an older female Korean teacher at my school how much I loved my dog, I finally used the example of the cow in India. “The dog is a sacred animal for many Americans,” I stated exasperated. She finally nodded quizzically, like a person observing a foreign custom.

The U.S. Employment and Equal Opportunity Commissions states that it is illegal for an employer to ask for a photograph of a potential new hire. Similarly, there are questions that employers are not allowed to ask during the job interview process, due to potential issues of discrimination in America.

As a part of my job I regularly give talks to groups of local TESL/TEFL/TESOL/CELTA students who are finishing their TESL courses. I get invited by local TESL schools local colleges with TESL programs to talk about international employment opportunities for TESL graduates.


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