Some time in the next 2-3 weeks, I'll be leaving for China, to teach ESL/Resource teacher at the Dalian Foreign Nationals School (elementary and middle). Here's how it happened...
Monday, September 13 - 10am - got a call from the local representative of Maple Leaf Schools in Dalian, describing the position, and asking if I was interested. Spent the rest of the morning trying to figure out who exactly this guy was, and how he got my contact info. I figured out that the school is a BC offshore school, so my email to another offshore agent must have made its way to him.
3:30pm - Go for the interview, which incidentally was my first as a 'qualifed' teacher (vs. my interview at BrainBoost two years ago). The interview went well, and was half him asking me pedagogy and management questions, and half him showing my pictures, describing the schools, etc.
7pm - arrive home to find an emailed contract that was sent within 20 minutes of my leaving the interview.
I then spent Tuesday talking to a lot of people and getting more information. I was really torn because China is not top on my list of places I want to live/visit, but the whole BC school thing is such a big draw. Also, taking to a former faculty advisor who knows the school, principal and has had students go helped to put any fears at rest (like knowing that when I arrive the school will actually exist). Thanks to all of my friends who were supportive and full of wise words during those 24-ish hours!
It's now Friday, and I've been immunized, talked to Bell (I've gotten my plan down to $15, which I'll have to continue to pay for the rest of my contract), ordered a Mandarin phrase book from Amazon, and started making a lot of lists! I don't have a departure date yet, but I'm hoping to go at the end of September, so I have a week to get settled in while the students are out for the national Oct. 1 holiday. I'll be making a modest (BrainBoost-esque) salary, but I get free accommodations! I've also heard that the cost of living is quite low, so I should be able to save/pay down my student loan fairly effectively, and hopefully do at least one awesome winter vacation trip. I also get one free flight home in the summer. My contract is for two years, and I will most likely move into an academic position in the high school (thank you B.Sc) for my second year, causing my salary to almost double.
Currently I'm feeling nervous, excited, unbelieving, anxious and lucky.