So how does a girl from Liverpool end up deciding to make the life changing decision to move to South Korea!
Well I can tell you that I didn’t just wake up one morning and decided to up and leave!
The journey begins just after Christmas in 2016. I had just ended a 5 and half year relationship and was living with the realisation that I have never pursued any of my big dreams. I was turing 27 soon and many of my friends were getting married, having children, or having fulfilling careers. I began seriously rethinking the way I was living my life and why I hadn’t pursued my dreams of travelling to the Far East. And the answers pretty much came down to one word- Money. I have always lived a hand-to-mouth existence and traveling was always out of my budget. However, with the recent upheaval in my life, I was determined not to let something like money stop me anymore!
I began doing research into getting working visas and what job opportunities there is for English speaking people in countries such as Korea and Japan. And that was when I discovered TEFL.
And my life changed.
Tefl stands for teaching English as a foreign language, and here before me was a way to not only travel, but also meet new people, teach future generations and even make some money along the way!
After extensive research, I knew this is something I wanted. I enrolled on a online tefl course to get my qualification and at the same time I started applying for recruitment agencies in South Korea. At this point it was February 2017.
During the rest of February and March, I started gathering all the documents I would need for my applications. (I will write a separate post all about gathering the documents as a UK applicant).
In April, I also sent of an application to EPIK (the government ran English program in Korea). I was originally going to sunmit to EPIK through one of my recruiters, because they look over your application before sending it to the official program, however due to being told conflicting deadline dates and one of my letters of recommendation taking a very long time to get hold off, I missed the deadline by 3 HOURS. At the time, I was pissed. Especially as this was a recruitment agency that pretty much everyone recommends! However, in the end, this turned out to be a blessing in disguise. I sent off my application directly to EPIK with little hope, and also during April I had a few interviews with hagwons (private schools), but none of these went well.
At the end of April, I got the surprise of my life when I got an email informing me that I had passed the first stage of the EPIK application, and I had an interview offer! All of a sudden, all my optimism came right back and I put my all into preparing for the interview of my life.
I will do a post all about the interview process, but in mid May, I had the great news that I had passed! After a bit more correspondence with my co-ordinator, I shipped of my documents to South Korea, and today they had arrived there!!
Missing the recruiters deadline was such a blessing in disguise because I am hearing that applicants that submitted through recruiters are still waiting for hear if they have even got an interview offer!
Now for me it is the waiting game whilst I wait to hear if I will get a place with my preferred province (Gwangju). So to prevent myself from tearing my hair out whilst waiting, I decided to make a blog to record my own journey and to hopefully help others with their own.
If anyone has any questions feel free to ask! And please follow my blog because I plan to write many posts on other aspects of the application, and also the next stages of the journey.