Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Are Overseas Teaching Jobs a Safe Option for Americans?

With the United States job market in dire straits, many Americans are looking for work abroad. The popularity of overseas jobs for Americans is increasing as those with expensive degrees realize there are few jobs available in their chosen field. While the outlook for specialized careers in the US is bleak, many countries are turning to Americans to fill valuable and well-paying positions abroad.

Working Overseas

Those with teaching degrees often choose to take their knowledge overseas. There are many reasons they may make this decision. Often, a teaching position abroad pays far better than one at home and can be easier to find. For some, the main draw is travel. Living in a different country allows teachers to experience a new culture. Still others choose to teach abroad after years spent educating in under-funded and overpopulated American school districts. But is accepting teaching jobs overseas safe?

In the vast majority of cases, the answer is a resounding yes. Countries abroad statistically have a much lower crime rate than America. China, Korea and Taiwan are a few of the best places to live for overseas teachers and all have a statistically low violent crime rate compared to many major American cities. Teaching in these places is sometimes safer than teaching at home. It is important to fully evaluate the crime rates in a particular country before committing to a teaching job there.

Living Overseas

The opportunity to live overseas is something many people desire. Prepare in advance by learning some of the native language, traditions and customs in order to better acclimate to the country. Be sure to experience all the culture has to offer. Many teachers educating abroad are housed with local families which can offer invaluable understanding of and exposure to a new country.

Moving Overseas

The process of preparing to move abroad can seem daunting. It is important to research the proper documentation required for living and working in any new country. China, for example, requires a Z-visa before being eligible for employment. The necessary forms can be obtained from a Chinese consulate and are used to prove you have authorization to work in the country. A valid passport is also a must. Taiwan requires a Resident Visa to stay in the country for more than 60 days and a Taiwanese employer must submit a work permit for the employee to the government. Korea requires extensive documentation which includes a special Visa, work permit and in some cases a Certificate of Good Conduct. Knowing exactly what is required to live and work in a foreign country is a must for those hoping to live overseas.

Teaching overseas is a strategic career move for many educators who cannot find American work in their chosen field. It allows them to experience a new culture while remaining true to their profession. Information on overseas jobs is readily available for those who wish to do further research. Teaching abroad is generally a very safe alternative to teaching in America.

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