Once you’ve secured your TEFL certification, albeit online or on-site. You need to start thinking about how to put that certification to use. One of the easiest ways to get ESL experience immediately is to look into a paid TEFL internship. These internships are usually offered by the company you received your certification from.
Before we get started I’d just like to say that I never did a internship. In hindsight it seems like it would of been a good idea though. Some paid internships don’t even require you to have a bachelors degree which is immense in the grand scheme of things. This provides a feasible channel to those without a university degrees hoping to find work as ESL teachers. Keep in mind that most TEFL internships require you to at least have a TEFL certification and usually prefer it be from them, so keep that in mind.
There are many benefits to doing a paid TEFL internship but as a traveler and experienced ESL teacher I can tell you that these are the best reasons.
#1. No need for a university degree to find work
With a paid TEFL internship funding your Thailand adventure is more than possible without the need of a 4-year accredited university degree. Now, this isn’t the case for all TEFL companies, but for reputable companies whose reputation far proceeds them, it’s not a problem.
What’s the benefit?: From my experience there are two types of people agencies look to hire. Someone with prior experience(even if it’s minimal) or someone who is fresh with all the qualifications needed to secure a work-permit.
Let’s not forget it really helps if your young(23-35) and good looking. A beautiful teacher may be preferred more than a qualified teacher.
#2. No Teaching Experience Required
Like previously mentioned earlier, all you need is to complete an online(or on-site) TEFL course by the company offering the internship and your 100% set to go. Now keep in mind that they do expect you to pay for your own air-fare, visa and living expenses. So saving a few bucks to cover yourself until your first paycheck is a damn good idea.
What’s the benefit of this?: You will get experience! Experience trumps all in the ESL world and with that you will be able to move onto other jobs regardless of what your qualifications lack. An important thing to keep in mind is this is a real job and most companies aren’t looking for “Work in Progress”. Thais take their jobs very seriously and you can almost bet that they’d prefer an experienced teacher any day to the newbie with no experience that has no idea whats going on.
#3. You’ll be working with people on your level; grow together.
Sometimes the meaning of “team” is taken for granted. You will be working alongside people who are in the same boat as you. This provides an opportunity for you to help each other progress and grow as ESL teachers and world travelers. There is a reason why you’ll all be working together and it’s not because a TEFL internship is some twisted reality show to see who goes nuts first. The people you’re working alongside will be like-minded individuals with similar goals. This is how you will make friends early on and from there the adventure has only begun.
What’s the benefit?: Although some of you reading this may be loners, it’s huge to have someone to share the experience with. You can learn more as well by seeing how other people interact as oppose to doing everything on your own. Also, do keep in mind that there will be low-points in your ESL adventure and when your 6,000 miles from home having people who know what you’re going through will be very helpful.
#4. Simple, Secured and Safe Way to Find Work.
I’ve heard horror story after horror story from individuals who’ve found work only to be not paid on time or let go for silly reasons. These stories were shared with me over over a period of 4-5 years, but the one thing each story had in common was that they found the job online and didn’t go through an agency to represent them. This is a big no-no if you’re a new teacher. The best reason to have a reputable network represent you for work is because the agency representing you already has a network in place of locals who work hand in hand with the schools they place you in.
What’s the benefit?: Your agency will make sure you get paid on-time, all the time. Sure they take a little cut but it’s well worth it to know that you’re protected against any fuckery.
#5. All the Aid you need starting out in a new country
You’ll get all types of guidance including: pre-airline departure assistance, air-port pick up and transfers, orientation, accommodation assistance, cultural activities, basic-thai lessons(survival), guaranteed salary, a work-visa and most importantly assistance with opening a Thai bank account (can be a freaking hassle!!).
Although you could do this all yourself, you’ll eventually find out that English isn’t so commonly spoken. Getting lost in translation can be frustrating and annoying at times. It’s best to have someone who knows exactly how to help you get these things out of the way.
If you’re interested in doing a paid internship I recommend mytefl.com. They’re #1 for me primarily because their reputation is well known in the ESL world, they have on the spot customer service and most importantly they have great great prices that really make this adventure a possibility. Keep in mind you must be from a native English speaking country and between the ages of 18-55.
Save 35% with promo code: FARANGDA