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Tecnologico de Monterrey
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Fitzgerald



Joined: 10 Aug 2010
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Mon Jan 20, 2014 1:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

22Yossarian wrote:
I am curious... I have been having ongoing discussions with a campus principal at Preppa for an August 2014 start date since July. I had a good interview, sent a video of a sample lesson they liked, and was even given a prileminary financial package and put in touch with a current foreign teacher, and out of the blue received an email telling me "big changes" are occuring and they cannot proceed with hiring me.

I am not too disapointed as over the last month I have really gotten my feet on the ground at my current job and the thought of readjusting to another school in another country did not seem as appealing as it did two months ago. I like the kids I work with here in Beijing but I would rather live in Mexico and this saved me the tough decision between a job i usually like to go to and a place i would like to live. I am curious if Preppa is making big changes or if they just found a candidate that they prefer.

Well, I can't speak for individual campuses other than my own, but across the system, yes, next year (2014-15) is the year when a total (and to my mind, unnecessary) overhaul of the Tec Prepa curriculum is starting. (They do this every few years.) This is one reason I am leaving. I have worked hard for three years to get the courses I teach into good shape, and now the attitude is, "You can throw out all your old lesson plans and start over! Isn't it wonderful?" I'm sorry, it's not wonderful.

That is lousy what they did to you, but characteristic. I wouldn't trust this place at all. But keep looking in Mexico if you're interested in the country. I like the living here.
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22Yossarian



Joined: 20 Jan 2013
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 2:28 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fitzgerald wrote:

Well, I can't speak for individual campuses other than my own, but across the system, yes, next year (2014-15) is the year when a total (and to my mind, unnecessary) overhaul of the Tec Prepa curriculum is starting. (They do this every few years.) This is one reason I am leaving. I have worked hard for three years to get the courses I teach into good shape, and now the attitude is, "You can throw out all your old lesson plans and start over! Isn't it wonderful?" I'm sorry, it's not wonderful.

That is lousy what they did to you, but characteristic. I wouldn't trust this place at all. But keep looking in Mexico if you're interested in the country. I like the living here.[/quote]

Thanks, the more research I did about Prepa (both here and on other websites) made me more concerned about taking a job there. My school here in Beijing has problems, but the kids do not make my classroom experience a nightmare. Many of them probably don't have the academic skills to be here, but they are nice kids. But, what I have read about Prepa is that the kids shouldn't be their academically and many of them are very disrespectful and difficult.

Really what I liked about Prepa was that they paid $2,000 USD a month, plus housing and other perks. It would be a bit of a pay cut from China, but with the cost of living it would have evened out. I am not greedy but I have student loans to pay, and I need at least $2,000 a month to live and pay my student loans. That really limits the schools I can work for in Mexico.
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Fitzgerald



Joined: 10 Aug 2010
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Tue Jan 21, 2014 7:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I had a few rough classes during my first two years here, and no help whatsoever from the administration in dealing with them. Now, in my third year, I have much better student relationships generally, which I attribute to some luck, a lot of hard work, and my being more familiar. Other Tec prepas (or, for that matter, non-Tec prepas) may be better or worse discipline-wise.

I hope I have benefited from my time at Tec so that, when I move on to another Mexican high school or university, I will have a much better sense of how to handle the students from the get-go. Every culture is slightly different in this respect and takes some adjusting to.

It is rather difficult to find $2,000/month jobs in Mexico, no question. I completely understand that being your minimum requirement.

I find that the lower cost-of-living idea is a little overrated. Apartments can be had affordably, yes, but other items vary. It is much more expensive to eat out at restaurants here than in Korea, for example (where I ate out almost every day).

My Tec prepa used to make intial offers in the $1,600-2,000 range, but now their maximum offer for a new international hire, even with a master's degree, is $1,200. Which is way inadequate if you ask me.
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BadBeagleBad



Joined: 23 Aug 2010
Posts: 787
Location: Juan Aldama, Zacatecas, Mexico

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 6:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fitzgerald wrote:

I find that the lower cost-of-living idea is a little overrated. Apartments can be had affordably, yes, but other items vary. It is much more expensive to eat out at restaurants here than in Korea, for example (where I ate out almost every day).
.


I have to disagree with you here. I have lived in Mexico for many years and found everything, with the exception of luxury items, imported items and American wanna-bes (and American businesses themselves) to be less expensive, in many cases much less expensive. But if you want to eat at American chain restaurants, or the Mexican equivalent - Sanborn's, Toc, El Porton, VIP, etc. yeah, you will pay more. But middle class Mexicans know where to find a comida corrida that costs half as much as tastes twice as good. Rent, outside of trendy areas, is less than half what you would pay in a similar sized city in the US, trendy areas would give the US a run for their money. Transportation, across the board, is far cheaper. Good, bought at a traditional market, or tianguis, again, far, far cheaper, and usually better, than at WalMart or Chedrahui. What did I miss?
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Fitzgerald



Joined: 10 Aug 2010
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 6:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

BadBeagleBad wrote:
Fitzgerald wrote:

I find that the lower cost-of-living idea is a little overrated. Apartments can be had affordably, yes, but other items vary. It is much more expensive to eat out at restaurants here than in Korea, for example (where I ate out almost every day).
.


I have to disagree with you here. I have lived in Mexico for many years and found everything, with the exception of luxury items, imported items and American wanna-bes (and American businesses themselves) to be less expensive, in many cases much less expensive. But if you want to eat at American chain restaurants, or the Mexican equivalent - Sanborn's, Toc, El Porton, VIP, etc. yeah, you will pay more. But middle class Mexicans know where to find a comida corrida that costs half as much as tastes twice as good. Rent, outside of trendy areas, is less than half what you would pay in a similar sized city in the US, trendy areas would give the US a run for their money. Transportation, across the board, is far cheaper. Good, bought at a traditional market, or tianguis, again, far, far cheaper, and usually better, than at WalMart or Chedrahui. What did I miss?

All I can say is, I have lived in Changwon, a city that has an expensive reputation in Korea, and Culiacan, a city that does not have an expensive reputation in Mexico, and find the overall costs of living to be very comparable between the two.

As for restaurants: in my experience, cheap restaurants in Culiacan are cheap for a reason, and offer little variety beyond lower-quality Mexican and Chinese cuisines. In Changwon, good restaurants were MUCH less expensive than so-so restaurants here, and came in many more varieties - Japanese, Italian, Vietnamese, Thai, etc. The only Thai restaurant in Culiacan closed for lack of business, ditto the only Vietnamese restaurant, despite the fact that both were quite good.

Low-cost Korean restaurants are cleaner and more pleasantly appointed than in Mexico.

(And if, say, you wanted American fast food in Changwon, a meal at Burger King there costs half as much in Korean won as the equivalent meal costs here in Mexican pesos. I know; I've done this experiment.)

Taxicabs in Korea are not only cheaper, but metered, which is better for the customer, and MUCH cleaner. Buses cost about the same. Good quality clothing is cheaper in Asia generally (although it can be difficult finding large sizes).There is no tipping in Korea; that really keeps costs down.

Not hating on Mexico or anything, I just don't think it is as cheap as is sometimes stated.
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Isla Guapa



Joined: 19 Apr 2010
Posts: 1515
Location: Mexico City o sea La Gran Manzana Mexicana

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

BBB's comments compared prices in Mexico to prices in the States while Fitzgerald's remarks compares the cost-of-living in a city in Korea to the cost-of-living in Culiacán, making this a sort of "apples and oranges" comparison.
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Fitzgerald



Joined: 10 Aug 2010
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Wed Jan 22, 2014 10:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Isla Guapa wrote:
BBB's comments compared prices in Mexico to prices in the States while Fitzgerald's remarks compares the cost-of-living in a city in Korea to the cost-of-living in Culiacán, making this a sort of "apples and oranges" comparison.

I think so, yes. It would be interesting to get a sense of which countries present the best ratio of Probable Salary and Benefits: Actual Cost of Living, for ESL and other international teachers. My take-home (high for Mexico) is about the same as in Korea, but there, my apartment was provided. Overall, financially, I was a little ahead in Korea.

Maybe the ratio is good in China. Definitely not in Japan - costs are too high. Definitely not in Central America and some parts of South America - pay is too low. No idea about Brazil or Argentina. I get the sense that the ratio in many European countries is bad. You hear about all these high salaries in the Middle East, and people get the idea that they could work in Saudi Arabia or Dubai for a couple of years and bank oodles of money, but I'm not sure how that all shakes out in actuality.
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22Yossarian



Joined: 20 Jan 2013
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Thu Jan 23, 2014 1:05 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The folks who have been in Beijing tell me it is expensive here. It still seems cheap to me, I eat out regularly, go to the bar on the weekend, have a spacious one bedroom apartment, weekly maid service, send about 1/3rd of my paycheck home every month, and usually end the month with a bit of money to spare.
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Fitzgerald



Joined: 10 Aug 2010
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Thu Jan 23, 2014 5:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

22Yossarian wrote:
The folks who have been in Beijing tell me it is expensive here. It still seems cheap to me, I eat out regularly, go to the bar on the weekend, have a spacious one bedroom apartment, weekly maid service, send about 1/3rd of my paycheck home every month, and usually end the month with a bit of money to spare.

That's pretty good! I've never been very successful in saving money abroad. I don't live extravagantly and don't go out much; basically, I'm at home with my cats. But I do spend more than a bit on books, DVDs, and CDs, and don't regret that at all. I do very much appreciate the fact that DVDs and Blu-rays are quite inexpensive in Mexico (those cost more in Korea).
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Fitzgerald



Joined: 10 Aug 2010
Posts: 55

PostPosted: Thu Jan 23, 2014 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Come to think of it, you know what was also a big factor in keeping my cost-of-living in Korea down? Medical costs.

In Mexico, I technically belong to the public system through my employer, but everyone at my school has advised me not to try to use it except in case of emergency - the waits are too long, the quality too variable, etc.

In Korea, I also belonged to the public system through my employer, and it worked stupendously well. I had a personal doctor at a fine hospital. I paid a visit to him once a month for the equivalent of $5.00 USD. My month's prescription for a not-cheap brand-name medication that I require was also $5.00 per month.

In Mexico, I pay out of pocket for that prescription, 1,000 pesos per month even with a Farmacon discount. I chose a private English-speaking doctor, but to visit his office costs 600 pesos, so I only go if I really need to.

I felt much more secure in my medical care in Korea. At age 55, this matters to me. It is a misgiving I have about Mexico.
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MotherF



Joined: 07 Jun 2010
Posts: 1082
Location: 1748'N 9746'W

PostPosted: Thu Jan 23, 2014 9:42 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In my area, most people employee a joint approach to health services.
I suggest you try IMSS to and see if you can get your prescription from them. For cronic conditions, most people here use IMSS, or non-emergancy surgeries. I had my gall bladder out in 2005. I had it done at the government hospital, but I went first to a private doctor for his diagnosis, then took his info, uncluding an ultrasound print out to the governement hospital, there I had to see the GP first, but I presented the private doctors info to the GP and they gave me the appointment for the surgeon who then scheduled the surgery. The private doctor was going to charge me 15,000 to the surgery, instead I got it for free from the government.
If you are sick and want to see a doctor right away, go to the private doctor. If you are only mildly sick or know what you have--like a stomach infection--then go to Dr. Simi for 30 pesos.

I gave birth once in a private hospital and once at the IMSS hospital. I choose the private one when I had twins, but when I was having just one baby, I decided that IMSS was fine as there was nothing out of the ordinary about that pregnancy.
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22Yossarian



Joined: 20 Jan 2013
Posts: 30

PostPosted: Tue Feb 25, 2014 3:32 am    Post subject: Well, I found my answer Reply with quote

Quote:
The Prepa Tec Campus Guadalajara and Santa Anita of the Tec de Monterrey System, Guadalajara, Mexico

Due to our interest in forming a multicultural learning environment the Prepa Tec is currently recruiting teachers that are natives of the following areas / countries of the world:

Geographic areas:

Asian countries, particularly China, Japan and Singapore

India

African countries

Nordic countries

Brazil


http://www.eslcafe.com/joblist/index.cgi?read=30762

What is amazing is that they have had the same broken link in each of their ads, it wouldn't take that much to fix it. They also misspelled Guadalajara in their headline.
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notamiss



Joined: 20 Jun 2007
Posts: 848
Location: El 5o pino del DF

PostPosted: Tue Feb 25, 2014 5:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Back to the comida corrida debate a few messages ago, people were throwing around words like “cheaper” and “not cheaper” but no figures were mentioned.

What I see in Mexico City is that a comida corrida popular ranges around 30 to 50 pesos these days. For that, you’ll get a basic home-cooked style meal of a sopa (soup, pasta or rice) and a main dish like a milanesa or a guisado, with tortillas, and maybe an agua (fresh fruit drink). It will be as good or bad as the cook’s home-cooking talents make it.

1. How does that compare with other people’s experience of prices in other parts of Mexico? 2. How does that compare with prices of similar meals in Beijing, and in Changwon, or elsewhere in China or Korea?
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Isla Guapa



Joined: 19 Apr 2010
Posts: 1515
Location: Mexico City o sea La Gran Manzana Mexicana

PostPosted: Tue Feb 25, 2014 5:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

notamiss wrote:
Back to the comida corrida debate a few messages ago, people were throwing around words like “cheaper” and “not cheaper” but no figures were mentioned.

What I see in Mexico City is that a comida corrida popular ranges around 30 to 50 pesos these days. For that, you’ll get a basic home-cooked style meal of a sopa (soup, pasta or rice) and a main dish like a milanesa or a guisado, with tortillas, and maybe an agua (fresh fruit drink). It will be as good or bad as the cook’s home-cooking talents make it.

1. How does that compare with other people’s experience of prices in other parts of Mexico? 2. How does that compare with prices of similar meals in Beijing, and in Changwon, or elsewhere in China or Korea?


Admittedly, I live in a neighborhood in Mexico City where prices tend to be a bit higher than in the more "popular" areas. These days the price of a "menú" goes from $45 to $70 in most places. It includes soup, a pasta or rice dish, a main dish, an "agua de frutas", dessert and bread or tortillas. Of course, there are more elegant eateries where you can pay up to $150, but I only go these restaurants for special occasions.
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BadBeagleBad



Joined: 23 Aug 2010
Posts: 787
Location: Juan Aldama, Zacatecas, Mexico

PostPosted: Tue Feb 25, 2014 8:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah, everything is about the area you live in. I have even seen higher prices in traditional markets in more upscale areas charging more, even though they all get their produce from the same place. In the area I lived in in Mexico City, 35 to 45 pesos was the norm for a comida. Where I lived now food is very cheap, but with a difference. Anything that is native to this area is super cheap, anything that comes from outside is more expensive. A comida here is 30 to 35 pesos, with soup, rice, beans, main dish, tortillas and a drink, a little cheaper than Mexico City as well as larger portions. Beans are grown here and cost 6 or 7 pesos a kilo if you buy in bulk, as is local, in season produce. Cheaper than Mexico City, anyway.
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