Jan 2014 23

Hey all! I just want to leave a quick blog post on something I’ve heard a lot about lately- internships for TEFL. I have known some reputable companies offering internship opportunities for ESL teaching. These programs usually provide on-location training abroad and ultimately there is the potential of a permanent position with a school. Not all of these companies are out to rip you off and some of them offer new teachers a good way to start their career in ESL.

Last week I ran a training course in Chicago and a young participant told me of his recent ordeal during an internship position in China. As a fresh college graduate, he decided to travel and try out teaching. After browsing on the internet he applied for an internship program which offered a comprehensive 3 months training period and a ‘guaranteed’ job offer. The day after he got off the plane, his school threw him straight into 25 hours of teaching¬† per week, without any training period. They employed him illegally for 3 months on a tourist visa, gave him no support in his general living and paid him just 2,500RMB ($401.15) per month!

When I heard about this person’s experience I did some research and found that there are many similar stories of people being taken advantage of via an ESL internship; all over the world. If you are a job seeker, I don’t want to discourage you from considering internship programs but please be careful and don’t lead yourself into this kind of position! Ask to see a contract beforehand.

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