Sunday, May 11, 2014

International Job Fair, Part 1

On the weekend starting Thursday, January 30, 2014, I flew up to Boston from BWI for Search Associates (Search) International Education Job Fair. I had a nice surprise when I got off the plane; Super Shuttle was waiting for me by the luggage carrousel with my name on an iPad mini! It was exciting. Then I learned I had the shuttle all to myself. And luckily I’m nosey and saw that it was going to take an hour to get to my hotel according to the driver’s GPS. I thought that seemed too long and looked it up on my phone. I had 16 minutes. Then I checked with the driver, they had my Maryland address as the location to drive to (there is a similar number/street combination in Massachusetts, just south of Boston). After we cleared that up, we were on our way for a 15 minute drive.

I was staying at the Courtyard Marriot. I unpacked and got on the next shuttle to the Hyatt Regency. When I go to check-in at the fair, they don’t have me! I’m freaking out, but remaining calm as they go through the motions of figuring out who I am. They had me registered as “Thom Thomas.” After fixing my name, I had just enough time to check my mailbox before orientation. Despite the mix-up in my name Nichimashi (Tokyo) was able to leave me confidential information about their school and contract. The orientation lasted about two hours. Where I heard from the president of Search, the director of the Cambridge Fair, and my personal Associate: Sally. Listening to Sally speak was amazing and she helped calm any fears that I - and the crowd - seemed to be having. I knew from that moment that Sally was amazing, and it was meant to be that she was my Associate. I went back to my hotel (thank you Uber), had a late dinner at the hotel restaurant (a Japanese restaurant). And then ironed some shirts and slept fitfully.

On Friday morning, I woke up before 6, to get ready and be on the 6:45 shuttle, to make it to the preview of the first session for interview sign-ups. I had my list of schools that I wanted to schedule an interview with, and then I continued to look around the ballroom for other positions I’m qualified for and are in places I wanted to go to.

I wait in many lines to see the headmasters/principals of the schools and convince them to interview me. Then I have to do it all again for the second interview sign-up session.

During the interview sign-up sessions, I met two other candidates: Mr. Mid-West (also and elementary teacher looking to go to Southeast Asia) and Ms. DC (an administrator who works right here in DC!).

Interview Sign-Up Session 1:
City/School Position Result
American School (AS) Tokyo K, 1-5 Left resume
International School (IS) Beijing 1-5 Interview
Keystone Beijing K, 1-5, Theatre, SPED Interview
Xiamen, China K, 1-5 Interview
ISF- Hong Kong 1-5 Interview
Hong Kong IS K, 1-5 Left resume
Pan AS Bahai Brazil K, 1-5 Left Resume
Bon IS, Germany SPED Left Resume
Italy, IS Genoa 1-5 Left Resume
Juju, Korea 1-5, Drama Interview Scheduled
Manila IS SPED Left Resume
IS Madrid 1-5 Left Resume
Ruamrudd IS, Bangkok 1-5, SPED Interview Scheduled
UK 1-5 Left Resume
Brazil – Graded School 1-5 Left resume
Comeroon 1-5 Left resume
Columbia 1-5 Left Resume
Venesula: Carabobo 1-5 Interview Scheduled
Bankstone, Korea Drama Left Resume

Interview Sign-Up Session 2:
Shanghai AS 1-5 Interview Scheduled
Shanghai Community IS Drama Interview Scheduled
Nishimachi 1-5 Interview Scheduled
Chadwick, Korea 1-5 Left Resume
FDR, Lima 1-5 Left Resume
Singapore AS 1-5 Left Resume
UK TASIS 1-5 Interview Scheduled
Venezuela, Puerto La Cruz 1-5 Interview Scheduled
Venezuela, IS Monaza 1-5 Interview Scheduled
IS Seoul 1-5 Left Resume
Brazil, Chaple 1-5 Left Resume
Switzerland AS Theatre Left Resume
IS Zurich Theatre Left Resume

So in the interview sign-up sessions I spoke with 32 schools and got 13 Interviews! Sounds like some great odds. Interviews and school presentations will be discussed in part 2.

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