As many of you may know, David and I are hoping to leave on an “adventure” of a lifetime (I’m using this word a lot only because we are using a recruiting company called Adventure Teaching and it is a pun… get it?). We hope to leave in October but in the meantime I wanted to get this blog up and running for the sake of my sanity from my current job and to keep me excited about what is to come.
A little about Adventure Teaching (AT)
I discovered AT through UO’s career website but I was not really sure about S. Korea. It just wasn’t really on my radar. I then found a website called gooverseas.com that compiles and allows past teachers to review recruiters and overseas programs. The basic summary they gave about Japan was this:
Japan is the place to go if you want to experience a unique culture while teaching in a professional environment. Mountains, hot springs, temples, neon lights, semi-tropical islands, jaw-dropping technology, a fresh cultural perspective, and a welcoming population are just a few of the reasons why people come to Japan. English teachers are in high demand.
That sounded nice. Make some money. See some things. Meet some people. Then, just for funsies, I clicked on the S. Korea and this is what they had to say:
If you’re looking to put yourself outside of your comfort zone, save some money and grow as a person as well as a professional, teaching in South Korea provides a wonderful opportunity. With a culture almost completely opposite than that of a Western one, you will constantly be confronted by something completely new to you. Discover Buddhist temples hidden in the mystery of early morning mountain fog, walk through Seoul’s bustling city sidewalks and neon-lit nights, and nod your head in respect to your boss in the morning and watch him dance while singing karaoke at night.
Now this sounds more like my cup of tea. I’m all about living outside my comfort zone and pushing myself in new ways. Also, the complete opposite of Western Culture? Sounds like paradise. I then noticed that AT has a 90% rating after 51 reviews! Pretty dang good! From that point on I started researching S. Korea and all it had to offer as a culture and place to work. I have to say, it seems like a pretty sweet deal.
David and I then had to fill out an application that was simpler than most job applications. The most trying part was taking a required photo. I was working on the application in the dead of night and all my roommates were asleep. I had also just gotten off of work so I did not look as clean as I might have hoped. You are supposed to submit a professional looking headshot in front of a neutral background. Well I was so excited to submit the application that I did not want to wait for the morning. So I put on some make-up, straightened the front of my hair, and took about twelve pictures trying to get the perfect one that did not look like a “myspace selfie”. I think I did alright.