For the past few months, I have been waiting for the day I could write about my next big trip. When I found out what city I was actually traveling to, I decided my postings could begin. Well folks, today is that day... finally! Here's what's going down.
Destination: Ulsan, South Korea.
I will be teaching English to public school students for a full year in one of South Korea's beautiful metropolitan cities, located in the southeast coast. My contract begins in August, which means just a couple more months in the United States before I'm off on my next adventure!
Many people have been asking me why I chose South Korea. The Korean government puts high value on their youth's ability to speak English, and therefore subsidizes rent, airfare, and pay for native English speakers to come work with students firsthand. With this kind of a deal, I will be able to save a deal of money while traveling and learning about this amazing culture.
The recruiting program I worked with to acquire the position, Footprints Recruiting, has been extremely helpful in the arduous 6-month process it has taken to process paperwork, creating contacts, and successfully completing interviews with English Programs in Korea (EPIK). This has been a marathon of phone-calling, email-writing, fee-paying, and putting faith in the system to work out the details. Fortunately, it is coming through just fine. So here I am, Bachelor's degree freshly achieved and ready to buy a ticket out of the country.
As some of you already know, this will be my second trip to southeast Asia, but my first move to another country. My first trip to Thailand in August 2009 (see previous blog posts) provided me with the opportunity to teach English to children as well. Education is incredibly important in developing countries where a skill like English can provide job opportunities to kids when they wouldn't normally.
Aside from teaching and developing a level of comfort in this foreign culture, I'm hoping to create some paths which will further my career with international non-profit work, including building a foundation as a professional photographer. SO, if anyone has professional connections in South Korea (or anyone else who may find an enthusiastic college grad such as myself relevant), please let me know!
Keep looking for this blog to find updates, photos, and so much more!
From your happy traveler, Laura.