In this instalment of teacher stories, we hear from recent Say Kimchi recruit Aubree who is living and working in the awesome city of Busan!
1. Please tell us a little more about yourself and how you came to teaching in South Korea?
Hello everyone, I’m Aubree from Southern California! I’ve worked in the HR field for many years and received my degree in Business Management a few years back. I originally saw the option of teaching abroad a few years ago but once I was back in the job market not seeing anything promising I decided to go for it and move to teach abroad for year. It is definitely a time-consuming process but worth it in the end. I chose South Korea because it seemed like a great environment for a newbie teacher to feel welcomed and I was right! I’ve been given loads of training and teaching advice already and I’ve been teaching two weeks so far. The kids are great, many are shy but still very intelligent and they make learning their priority.
2. How have you adapted to the culture?
I would say I’ve adapted quite well so far. Busan is near the beach so being from California, it almost feels like home but with a twist. The subway system is very easy to navigate once you read the signs and to be honest the buses are scary to me so I would rather walk or ride the subway to my destination. The food choices are endless, even though I’ve eaten rice with almost every meal it’s still very satisfying because Korean restaurants always have 20 different side dishes with their meal. Not to mention, the cafe culture has blown up all around Korea so it’s heaven for a coffee lover like me. The night-life is very exciting, everyone loves to have a good time and seems to have a smile on their face wherever I go.
3. Have you been able to make some new friends?
So far, I’ve made a few friends through my school and we’ve had dinner and went out lots of time to explore the town. Also, I’ve made a few Korean friends (who speak broken English) but nonetheless they are very nice and are excited to practice what English they know. I’d also love to eventually take some Korean language classes but I will have to find one that works with my schedule.
4. What was your relationship like with Say Kimchi Recruiting?
I would definitely recommend Say Kimchi to anyone that is currently looking for a teaching position overseas in Korea. Anne was incredibly helpful with any and all questions that came her way and her email correspondence was always thorough and detailed which made me happy to have chosen this specific recruitment agency in the end. I am very satisfied with my placement and everyone at my school has been friendly and welcoming so far.
5. Any advice for recruits wanting to go teach in South Korea?
If you’re still thinking about going, seriously stop thinking and start the process! The experience itself is very rewarding and not many people can say they’ve lived and worked in a completely different area and inspiring culture.
Read more Teacher Stories to see how other people are adjusting to life in South Korea!