Site Search:
 
TEFL International Supports Dave's ESL Cafe
TEFL Courses, TESOL Course, English Teaching Jobs - TEFL International
Job Discussion Forums Forum Index Job Discussion Forums
"The Internet's Meeting Place for ESL/EFL Students and Teachers from Around the World!"
 
 FAQFAQ   SearchSearch   MemberlistMemberlist   UsergroupsUsergroups   RegisterRegister 
 ProfileProfile   Log in to check your private messagesLog in to check your private messages   Log inLog in 

St. Joseph's College Macau - Anyone with knowledge? Other Qs

 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> China (Job-related Posts Only)
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
l_ho_



Joined: 10 Feb 2012
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Sat Feb 18, 2012 5:07 pm    Post subject: St. Joseph's College Macau - Anyone with knowledge? Other Qs Reply with quote

Hi all, I'm looking for a job teaching in China and I've been recently been set up with an interview at St. Joseph's College in Macau, and I've got a few questions:

1) Has anyone heard of this college? The interviewer is named Helen Wu, and I'm a bit weary because I've read on these forums to watch out for someone named Helen.

2) What's it like teaching in Macau? I saw a thread from about two years ago where it didn't seem to get favourable reviews, but I'm wondering if anything has changed.

3) My main goals are probably the same as many other people here, I'd like to see and experience China and hopefully pick up a little bit of Mandarin while I'm there (I know it will be tough, looking at this with a glass half full perspective). Given that Macau's on an island, and a former colony where Cantonese is the primary language spoken, I was wondering how feasible it would be to achieve either of these goals there. The money seems to be good 16,000-20,000 patacas per month (I think that's about 10,000 yuan), but if that's the only positive about working there it may not be worth it.

4) Figure I'd throw this last one in, though I've seen similar posts but with seemingly mixed responses. I'll be finishing my MSc in Political Science in July and I just finished an online TEFL course. I've read both that these things (the MSc and the online TEFL) can be really useful, but I've also read the exact opposite, that they mean nothing. I have no prior teaching experience, what kind of job can I reasonably expect to be getting in China in terms of money, hours, age group, institution?

Any advice would be greatly appreciated, thanks!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
naturegirl321



Joined: 04 May 2003
Posts: 8997
Location: home sweet home

PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

A friend of mine was offered a job in Macau at a university. He says that the cost of living is less than where we live now. He's been offered 50K usd though, so I'm sure that helps.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message Send e-mail Visit poster's website
doogsville



Joined: 17 Nov 2011
Posts: 700
Location: China

PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 8:09 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hi, I don't know about working in Macau, but I do a bit of shopping there since I live in Zhuhai right next door. First off Macau is not on an Island, the main part of Macau is on the mainland, and there are two islands which form part of Macau but are mainly residential and industrial. Not sure where the college is though, so it might be on either Taipa or Coloane, the two islands. Secondly Putonghua is almost never spoken in Macau except by the hordes of mainlanders that go there for the casinos. The official languages of Macau are Cantonese and Portugese and they still use traditional Chinese characters as opposed to the simplified characters used on the mainland.

If your looking to see a bit of China and learn Mandarin then your going to the wrong place in my opinion. You'll need a visa to visit the mainland, though Zhuhai and Guangdong both have airports that you could travel to other cities from.

I don't think the infamous Helen has anything to do with Macau, could be wrong though, and when you say teaching in Macau got a bad press on here, exactly how many people said they didn't like it and what did they say about it? Be careful not to let one or two people from amongst the hundereds who must have taught in Macau put you off.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
sistercream



Joined: 18 Dec 2010
Posts: 487
Location: Pearl River Delta

PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 11:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I spent 5 years in Macau and keep up my contacts there, so although I don't know anyone working at Joey's right now, I do know that it is one of the best regarded secondary schools in Macau. I gather that the evening classes they have been running for years have now also been upgraded to some kind of official status, and their teacher training programme is also well regarded.

As everywhere in the world, the experience of teaching in Macau depends largely on the principal at the time. I found my own job there really frustrating, but enjoyed living in Macau: it's not as frenetic as Hong Kong, and maintains much more sense of community. Their former Portuguese overlords did not generally leave a good impression of foreigners, but if you approach people as a student of their culture and a friend rather than as the one who knows it all already, you can build good & lasting relationships with local Chinese. If you just want to mix with other expats, you will not only be living in a VERY small village, but you will probably feel poor and hard done by, as most will be working for the new casino resorts and earning oodles more than you.

Macau is tiny - I think only about 6 miles square land area (although recent reclamations might have bumped it over that figure), and even more densely populated overall than Hong Kong, but there's an amazing amount of interest tucked into that little space. Still, I would have gone nuts if I couldn't spread my wings and head across to the mainland or HK periodically. After you get you employment card (either a yellow card or BIR), you can apply for a multiple entry visa to the mainland any time.

If you're prepared to live "local" and not insist on the latest condo with clubhouse, all mod cons and full sea view, eating at casino resort restaurants, blah blah blah ... then you could easily save half your salary on 20K.

All the local Chinese watch mainland TV, and most can understand Mandarin, but mangle it thoroughly while speaking it. That said, there are now also plenty of mother tongue Putonghua speakers in Macau, many of them teachers, so it's no problem getting good quality lessons.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
MisterButtkins



Joined: 03 Oct 2009
Posts: 1215

PostPosted: Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:02 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A lot of the Chinese in Macau can't speak Mandarin well at all. I was there a few weeks ago and asked someone at a convenience store for a 袋子 and she didn't know what it was. Then I asked her for a bag. Still didn't know. Then I did the motion of putting things in a bag and she mumbled something in Cantonese and gave me the bag. When the Macanese do speak in Mandarin they have horrific accents. Terrible, terrible place to learn Mandarin IMO.

Macau has been compared to Las Vegas, but other than the casinos I really don't think they are very similar. I was in the casinos on a Friday night and it seemed there was an awful dearth of drunk people. In fact it appeared most of the gamblers were not drinking at all! How boring. This does make it easier to get lots of free beer while gambling though, as most of the people don't order it. The point is, the Chinese seem to mainly come to Macau to gamble, and don't have the 'go crazy' attitude that many adopt in Vegas. Also, man there are a lot of really, really rich Chinese people in Macau. Table after table of minimum 500 HKD bet games, all full of people. Wow. Also stumbled into some seafood restaurants where some items on the menu were 800 HKD/Patacas.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
l_ho_



Joined: 10 Feb 2012
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 11:19 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for your input guys!

Quote:
If you just want to mix with other expats, you will not only be living in a VERY small village, but you will probably feel poor and hard done by, as most will be working for the new casino resorts and earning oodles more than you.


How would one go about getting a job at a casino there? Are they easy jobs to get?

Quote:
The point is, the Chinese seem to mainly come to Macau to gamble, and don't have the 'go crazy' attitude that many adopt in Vegas.


That sounds really depressing...at the very least you'd think they'd have fun as they lose their life savings.


Quote:
when you say teaching in Macau got a bad press on here, exactly how many people said they didn't like it and what did they say about it?


I quickly tried to find the thread again but with no luck. From what I remember there were those who were saying it used to be really good but never really developed at the rapid pace of many other cities over the past decade, became rather devoid of life/social scene, and turned into a depressing place where the Chinese come to blow their money in casinos.

I am now rethinking Macau, mainly because of the lack of Mandarin. I know this question has been asked a million times before on this forum, and have seen an extremely wide range of answers, but I've been asked by a recruiter for a list of my preferred locations.

My priorities are: (1) Learn Mandarin; (2) Make decent enough money to take a chunk out of my student debt; (3) Live in a large enough city that I won't lose my mind with boredom, (as I've heard can happen if you get stuck in a small town or the countryside.)

Any suggestions for what cities/regions I should put on the list?

Thanks!
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
sistercream



Joined: 18 Dec 2010
Posts: 487
Location: Pearl River Delta

PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 12:01 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

l_ho_ wrote:

My priorities are: (1) Learn Mandarin; (2) Make decent enough money to take a chunk out of my student debt; (3) Live in a large enough city that I won't lose my mind with boredom, (as I've heard can happen if you get stuck in a small town or the countryside.)

Any suggestions for what cities/regions I should put on the list?

Thanks!


A lot depends on your qualifications and experience - to get an expat job in one of the casinos you would need to have been in that or a closely associated business (event management, F&B) for some years in order to have the seniority to get a specialist employment visa.

For most TEFLers I'd suggest Taiwan or a 3rd or so tier city on the mainland for your set of priorities, though I understand it's getting a lot harder to break into the Taiwan market these days.
But if you have proper teacher qualifications, certification and 2 years + experience, get a job at a real school in Hong Kong - specially if you live out in the NW New Territories, where rents are much lower and the concentration of mainlanders much higher than in the more "expatty" areas.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
l_ho_



Joined: 10 Feb 2012
Posts: 10

PostPosted: Tue Feb 21, 2012 1:29 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have no formal experience, which I imagine hinders me a lot, I am hoping that the MSc and the TEFL certificate would give me a little bit of an edge over the average newbie candidate.

I have spent today looking at Taiwan jobs, so far all I see are either really low paying (1500 USD/month), are start ASAP jobs, or give offers way too good to be true (they look like a scam, and I'm hesitant to send out an email and risk getting bombarded with junk mail).

I'll keep looking though, it does seem like a good spot, thanks for the suggestions.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Albert Cribbins



Joined: 19 Aug 2012
Posts: 79
Location: Sichuan

PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2012 12:53 pm    Post subject: re: helen Reply with quote

There is a helen of china helen tefl in hangzhou on the mainland that has a bad rep.

This is not the same helen, you can be sure of that one.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
MisterButtkins



Joined: 03 Oct 2009
Posts: 1215

PostPosted: Tue Oct 09, 2012 4:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They don't speak Mandarin in Macau.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mikeylikesit114



Joined: 21 Dec 2007
Posts: 112

PostPosted: Wed Oct 10, 2012 2:52 am    Post subject: Masters in polisci? Reply with quote

On the mainland, a master's degree is useful for obtaining a z-visa, and for obtaining subject teacher jobs (related to the degree obtained) in international schools and joint venture programs.

I don't know about Macau's visa requirements, but I don't imagine a masters in polysci will be useful for English teaching jobs.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
hdwhatley



Joined: 09 Jun 2010
Posts: 25
Location: Hangzhou, China

PostPosted: Wed Oct 24, 2012 2:20 pm    Post subject: colegio sao jose macau Reply with quote

The Colegio is actually a Catholic high school and primary school.

They offer 16,000 Macau dollars per month as a salary and the housing for teachers is a shared two bedroom flat. No airline ticket fare reimbursement.

Teachers are entitled to annual leave of 22 days, after completing one year’s service.

They like to recruit Canadian graduate students as part of an exchange program. The principal of the school does not particularly like Americans.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Display posts from previous:   
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> China (Job-related Posts Only) All times are GMT
Page 1 of 1

 
Jump to:  
You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot vote in polls in this forum


This page is maintained by the one and only Dave Sperling.
Contact Dave's ESL Cafe
Copyright © 2011 Dave Sperling. All Rights Reserved.

Powered by phpBB © 2001, 2002 phpBB Group

Road2Spain - TEFL and Spanish with one year student visa
EBC