It was almost one year ago when I began to feel the major effects of cube dwelling. My chair ass was sinking deeper and wider into my unergonomic office chair. The computer screen was singeing my eyes. And flourescent lighting was doing nothing for my complexion except enhance my olive green undertones (not hot).
So when I found this job posting on Google that claimed I could spend my summer travelling around Italy, be outdoors, work with kids, meet dozens of other 20-somethings from around the world and be paid for it, I was obviously intrigued. But in skeptical New Yorker fashion I thought, What's the hitch?
Well, the fact that its nearly one year later, I'm still in Italy and will be spending another summer with the same company should be all the proof you need. As jobs abroad go, this one is rather hitch-less!
If your cube is getting you down, read on and learn how I managed to transform my summer from monotonous to magic.
Step 1: Start searching the internet in your down time - Since I know "down time" is hard to come by in Corporate America, I've made the search easier for you. Check out these great work/teach abroad sites.
National Association of International Educators (NAFSA)
Craigslist (Search Europe/International Jobs)
Dave's ESL Cafe
Expat-Blog (read success stories and get tips from other expats)
Step 2: Submit your application to ACLE - This is the group I worked with! It stands for Association of Linguistic and Cultural Education. In a nutshell, they send mother tongue English tutors to hundreds of cities around Italy to teach children at English immersion camps. The Amalfi Coast, Sardinia, Sicily, Milan, and Tuscany are just some of the places you could be sent to teach.
The best things about this program are a) you do not need to know second language, only English b) you don't need TEFL or TESOL certification c) food, accommodation and travel (around, not to Italy) are provided!
They are currently accepting applications for 2008. The site has recently been updated and has heaps of info about wages, job description, etc.
Step 3: Take a leap of faith - What's the worst that could happen? If you hate your experience abroad, you come home. If you love it, you may never leave! You'll never know unless you try. Ok, enough with the pep talk. I'll leave you with a few motivational pix from last summer.