After about 6 months of working through the long application process it is surreal that I will be leaving my home to move 8,000 miles across the world to be teaching in Seoul, South Korea in exactly one month. For those who are interested in taking the plunge and teaching abroad I would like to give you some helpful information.
Step One: Start early. I started researching in January for a position for September. I decided to go through a recruiting agency called Korvia Recruiting, which is the most reputable. They work to hire teachers through EPIK (English Program in Korea) to place English speakers in positions throughout South Korea.
Step Two: Fill out the application. Your recruiter will send you a lengthly application and if you wish to teach in Seoul you will also need to fill out a sample lesson plan to send to SMOE (Seoul Metropolitan Office of Education).
Step Three: Complete Phone Interview. Be sure you are prepared to answer questions about teaching and about Korea. Be enthusiastic and show your willingness to be flexible!
Step Four: Get your documents ready. You are going to need a lot of documents and they need to have special stamps on them in order to be accepted overseas. This takes time so start getting your documents as soon as you hear that you have passed your interview if not sooner. You will need:
1.) Copy of passport.
2.) Apostillized copy of BA diploma
3.) Apostillized criminal background check from every state you have lived in if from the USA.
4.) 2 official sealed transcripts
5.) Apostillized copy of teaching certificate or TESOL cert.
6.) Employment verification letter (if you have teaching experience)
7.) Two letters of recommendation that fulfill specific requirements
* Be sure that your letters of recommendations are tailored to meet the requirements of EPIK
* Apostillization of documents is an official stamp that costs approx. $40 per document.
*Criminal background checks cost approx. $50.