What Can you do after ESL Teaching?
Many people use ESL Teaching as just a gap year while many others have turned it into a full-time career. The skills learned while teaching ESL abroad are very transferable to many other positions and careers. From the soft skills of learning to work with people from different backgrounds and cultures to just having the ability to put having worked in a different country on your resume. To the more hard skill sets of learning a new language.
Here are For Teach Recruiting we have seen many of the teachers we have recruited in the past use the skills learned and applied them to be very successful in very different career paths. Leveraging their time abroad into things that they could have only imagined before.
A lot more people are becoming full career changers these days than have been in the past anyway, this is just another thing people will switch from. I personally have many friends who have changed their career paths into industries that are very different from the ones that they just left and none of them were ESL teachers or a teacher in the states. So having one specific answer to this question is just not going to happen as everyone is different.
When it comes to teaching in general, half of all new teachers in the US quit after just 5 years. Why are they quitting, what are these teachers doing when they quit teaching? I do not want to discredit the training and hard work that these teachers did to get into the education field. However, they seem to be getting jobs in all kinds of different industries that are not related to teaching at all. How are they able to get a position they did not get a degree for? To answer this, contrary to what several people might think, I do not think what your degree is in really matters as much anymore. What matters is their work efforts and their abilities to leverage the new skill sets that they have learned and applying them to be successful in their new career.
When it comes to ESL teaching many people just do it for a gap year or two but others might stay longer. I know several people who taught ESL in Asia and have moved into other industries in the same country that they were teaching in.
They have become magazine editors, web designers, translators, accountants, sales reps, actors, bloggers, YouTubers, etc….
I also know people who have gone back to the states and used the time abroad to get positions at international companies. Several others will continue to add to their teaching credentials and move up the ladder within the ESL industry and education field abroad. If they go home and pursue the education field or any other field the time abroad can only add to their resume and strengthen their skill sets more than it can subtract.
Personally, I do not see anything wrong with ESL work abroad and feel that it can only add to a resume.
For a few general skill sets a person can learn or hone and a couple of resume boosters a person can add are, gaining international experience, learning to deal with many different personalities/cultures and letting a company know that you are very adaptable to almost any situation.
Aside from ESL teaching, how a person uses their free time while overseas can probably have the biggest impact on what they will do next. Going out drinking and partying all the time will not give a person too many things that they can share in a job interview or put on a resume. Learning a second language, acquiring and learning new skills, volunteering or several other things can make the time abroad extremely beneficial. Yes, these are all things that a person can be doing in any location not just another country but they can leave a bigger impact when someone has been living overseas and can just generally “sound” more impressive.
Something a number of ESL teachers are doing these days are even completing masters degrees online and using this free time to add certifications, building and adding to an already strong CV.
The ability to earn degrees and certifications online allows people to do these things from anywhere in the world.
Learning a second language can be much easier if you are in a country that speaks that language.
Now with the right amount of focus, the time frame to achieve a conversational level for that second language can be very short. Also for volunteering, for someone who stays in their home country, it might sound like, feeding the homeless in downtown or volunteering at the homeless shelter etc…, when someone has lived abroad it might sound like, working with and helping to educate North Korean refugees. I must emphasize that I do think working with the homeless is an easy task at all, however, one of these volunteering activities sounds much more impressive than the other and is going to garner more attention at many different companies.
As you can see whether it is just for a gap year or turning Teaching English Abroad into a fulltime career, it can only add to your skills and credentials. How one does this is up to the individual.
We cannot forget one of the biggest reasons many people choose to Teach English Abroad, To help save money, to travel and have the adventure of a lifetime.
Can you think of anything else positive that Teaching English Abroad can add to a persons resume? Post in the Comment Section below.
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