Posts Tagged ‘working in china’

I’m not killing it, but I’m definitely in the hunt.

This is my fifth installment of my quest to Asia. I am no longer frustrated with the process. I didn’t meditate, drop a tab or swim Lake Minnetonka to reach my calmer disposition. I’m simply taking a more pragmatic approach. I can only get documents when they come on the agency’s time line. If that document’s arrival exceeds the agency’s expected delivery date, only then can I raise Hell, legitimately. Surprisingly, I have not had to do much Hell raising lately. I’ve been actively in contact with Greenheart Travel, a recruiting agency for Korean schools. I submitted digitized documents and an application for the EPIK program Spring semester. I will interview with a recruiter on Tuesday of this coming week. Greenheart has been really helpful as far as sending document checklists and next steps for the teacher type of documents. One thing that impressed me and made me feel much more comfortable about the application process was the feedback my recruiter gave me. She recommended I submit another letter of recommendation because it was too short, lengthen the lesson plan required for the application and I saw that I mistakenly left an item incomplete. Sara is definitely the most professional recruiter that I’ve come across since I began submitting applications to recruiting agencies a few months ago. I am leaning toward Korea, now more than ever, even though I’ve received a solid inquiry from a recruiter in China. I received a sample contract of $6,000 yuan, shared housing and a few other amenities. I like the idea of working in China, as I know a few people who have made the trip, but one of my deciding factors is prepaid airfare. Most Korean schools have prepaid flights and/or flight reimbursement. EPIK provides prepaid flights to Korea. Chinese schools usually offer partial payment or a set price for reimbursement, but none I’ve come across have offered full prepaid flights to China. If I can keep $1,200+ bucks in my bank account, that’s more money that can be spent on food, clothes and gaining some lucky Asian woman’s attentions. On another note, my quest for apostilled documentation is nearing completion. I’m happy to report I received two copies of state apostilled bachelor’s degrees as requested a few weeks ago. (See my sarcastic big bass pose with apostille in hand above) I am currently waiting on my FBI background investigation for the second time. When I have that in hand, I will mail it off to the U.S. State Department for their apostille. AND WAIT, this time patiently. I’m hoping to have that big bass pose by mid-November at the latest. If that happens, I will have done all that needs to be done here, short of getting and signing a contract from a school and attaining a work visa and foreign identification card in Korea. Well, that’s how it’s supposed to happen. I will get there when I get there, all in all. Oh, another resource I can recommend for newbies is youtube. There are several teachers currently in Korea that have posted and continually update videos outlining anything from the application process to the price of toothpaste and milk in country. I have found this guy’s videos really helpful and he responds fairly quickly to comments and questions about content.

I’ve also joined Korean teacher and Expat forums, submitted my resume to several ESL job sites, recruiter sites and expanded my search to less favorable destinations to see what other locales have to offer. Early in this journey, I found myself latching on to only applying for positions with the Big Three (Korea, Japan and China) in the beginning of my search. Now, I have been in contact with recruiters for schools in Mexico, Thailand, Colombia (yeah, I know, thrill seeker here.) and Chile. I wish I could say I had a system and there was a method to the madness. But honestly, I’m sure I’ve sent my picture, resume and academic documents to over seventy different recruiters over the past few months. I’ve joined, by entering my resume electronically, over seven or eight recruiting agency websites. I have searched old blog posts for outdated job openings, copied the contact info and cold contacted the recruiters. I am taking a break playing tag now and focusing on EPIK as my main choice. The Korean government and their department of education have money to spend and seem to be a stable place for me to start my ESL teaching career. And I will get to Asia, God willing.

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