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 

"skinny"on CNAQ
Goto page 1, 2  Next
 
Post new topic   Reply to topic    Job Discussion Forums Forum Index -> Qatar
View previous topic :: View next topic  
Author Message
lukey



Joined: 05 Apr 2005
Posts: 68

PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2007 3:41 pm    Post subject: "skinny"on CNAQ Reply with quote

I have had a request to provide some information on CNAQ to people who are thinking of working there. Here is some information as I see it:

You might have a positive recruitment experience - it is hit and miss. The HR recruiting office in NL is generally overwhelmed in the spring and july by the massive hiring requirements, so it can be hectic and disorganized. The people in that office have never worked or lived in Qatar, so they are not a good source of information about these topics. CNAQ has developed a very good link on their website with good information for employees or prospective employees.
Once you get to Qatar - if you start in August - it will be 40 to 50 degrees C - it will seem like hell - be prepared - this temp will last until about October.
The accomodations - while free - are substandard - just be prepared for that.One of the apartment buildings has suffered from mould problems - it probably would have been shut down in Canada.
Schooling is difficult - the Canadian school is a small villa which will be bulging to the limit next year - maybe even full - it is K to 9. No facilities - no gym, no computer lab, very very limited. Great teachers though. If you have children in grades 10 to 12 dont bother coming - there is no room for them. I would think twice about bringing my children to Doha actually.
The college is poorly mangaged. The executive consists of two people - the President and VP Academics - they have tried to recruit two other VPs for a year - to no avail - they cant get anyone to come. The President is invisible and the VP Academcis basically runs the college - but her style creates a terrible working atmosphere. In one of her departments - EFL - the Dean ran amok for a year - harassing and abusing employees with the VP - according to her - not knowing about it. It was only after an employee opinion survey done in May - from employee's direct comments - that the Dean was fired. Nothing would have been done otherwise.
Employees are treated as if you worked directly for Qataris instead of Canadians - employees are considered expendable and not worth much. The salary system is very secretive - not transparant at all - their are many problems with disparity. Also once you get to the college your job is often different than what was described by the HR office in NL.
Th HR department is basically an administrative departmetn issuing exit permits etc. it is not like an HR department in Canada at all - no support there.
The best part of working at CNAQ is working with your peers - that is the most rewarding part.

If you do accept a job there - go there with your eyes open, do a lot of research, ask a lot of questions and dont expect the paradise that CNA promises.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
helenl



Joined: 04 Jan 2006
Posts: 1180

PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2007 4:32 pm    Post subject: but Reply with quote

aren't employees of CNA-Q members of the union (collective bargaining unit)? From what I understand, many of the employees are from the Newfoundland community college system, pay dues and as such are covered by the collective bargaining agreement.

Granted, that does not mean that in Doha, they may be treated as union employees, but CNA cannot afford to tick their union members off - or I wouldn't have thought so based on my limited experience with unions?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
lukey



Joined: 05 Apr 2005
Posts: 68

PostPosted: Sun Jul 01, 2007 6:22 pm    Post subject: CNAQ Reply with quote

The instructors at CNAQ pay union dues, but have no rights in Qatar under the collective agreement at CNA in Newfoundland. The union dues are paid strictly to keep the CNA employees seniority rights. Non- CNA employees also pay union dues, which is obviously an issue with employees. Remember, unions are illegal in Qatar -hence no union representation at CNAQ. The NL union has no jurisdiction in Qatar. It is of no use for Qatar employees to talk to the NL union. And besides, only a small percentage of employees are CNANL employees - maybe 20 percent. Another 20 per cent are newfoundlanders that dont work for CNA and the other 60 percent are from across Canada. One of the serious issues at CNAQ is that employees have nowhere to go for help when they are having issues with management.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
MyTrunkshow



Joined: 21 Apr 2007
Posts: 231
Location: One map inch from Iraq

PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 5:18 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thx Lukey. It is appreciated that you took the time.

After the initial 10 year period, is CNAQ to be handed over to the Qataris? After this point, will it no longer be a child of CNA-NFLD?

Sounds dire for parents with children expecting a comparable life as was in Canada. Kids need greenery and a stable life as far as I'm concerened. The hot dusty desert is just not suitable for Canadian kids IMO.

There seem to be some politics at the school. Is it possible and realistic to put one's head down and ignore the drivel from above? ...or is the place micro-managed?

I like what you said about working with your peers. A fella like myself just can't wait. Typically in Asia, I'm not understood, misunderstood or stood up in Asia. It'll be nice to have another respond to a comment that I make rather than be glossed over by co-workers who are lovely and kind but are not native Eng. speakers.

Are people hired for the 2nd semester after the New Year?

Regards,
mytrunkshow
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
lukey



Joined: 05 Apr 2005
Posts: 68

PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 6:35 am    Post subject: CNAQ Reply with quote

i should add that working with the students can be rewarding also - motivation is a huge factor with the Qatari students - class sizes are small which is nice.
Also i dont want to be totally negative about working in Qatar - there are some good things - meeting great people - fellow Canadians and local hires from other countries - the opportunities for travel are fantastic -
Driving is hazardous though - it is very stressful and i actually fear for my life every time i am on the road. The Qataris (mainly) are insane drivers - feeling that they can risk their lives because God will protect them - that is why the gulf states have the highest accident rates in the world!
No one knows what will happen after 10 years - maybe CNA will walk away? Big question mark. You can keep your head down - depends on the department. They do hire people for the winter semester starting in January.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
007



Joined: 30 Oct 2006
Posts: 2684
Location: UK/Veteran of the Magic Kingdom

PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 9:49 am    Post subject: Re: CNAQ Reply with quote

lukey wrote:
The Qataris (mainly) are insane drivers - feeling that they can risk their lives because God will protect them - that is why the gulf states have the highest accident rates in the world!.

I do not think that “feeling that they can risk their lives because God will protect them” is the main cause for the highest accidents in the Gulf States.
The main reasons are the lack of proper car driving training and tests, and the lack of strict code of punishment against careless driving. Furthermore, the majority of the highway police institutions in the Gulf states are corrupt and are not strict in the implementation of fines against careless car drivers.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
helenl



Joined: 04 Jan 2006
Posts: 1180

PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 10:26 am    Post subject: As you say, I could see it being an issue Reply with quote

if one is paying the union dues but is not covered by the collective bargaining agreement? One would think that though an employee has no legal recourse in Qatar - they would in Canada - if you're paying the union then the union has some obligation towards the payee?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mine's a pint



Joined: 08 Feb 2007
Posts: 46
Location: Somewhere

PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 4:00 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

...sounds like every other higher ed institution in this part of the world Wink
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
lukey



Joined: 05 Apr 2005
Posts: 68

PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 4:34 pm    Post subject: difference Reply with quote

Yes, but the main difference with CNAQ is that it is managed by Canadians - not Gulf nationals - it should make a difference - this situation is unique in colleges in this area - there are some American universities that have campuses in Qatar for example
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mine's a pint



Joined: 08 Feb 2007
Posts: 46
Location: Somewhere

PostPosted: Mon Jul 02, 2007 4:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Why assume it should be different if it's run by Canadians? There are other institutions in the region managed/led/advised by foreign organisations and the problems are very similar regardless of where people are from. Might it be the context - lots of money for example - that brings out the behaviour?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
MyTrunkshow



Joined: 21 Apr 2007
Posts: 231
Location: One map inch from Iraq

PostPosted: Wed Jul 04, 2007 4:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Both 007 and the Mine'sapint are not very helpful for obtaining insight on CNA. Twisted Evil

Is the pool maintained in the villas? Are there reasonable facilities for fitness?

I got an email from HR at CNA today and the job is still open. THe note suggested the shortlisting will be done soon for the EFL position.

Regards,
Mytrunkshow
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
AKSDCM



Joined: 14 May 2007
Posts: 5

PostPosted: Sat Jul 14, 2007 11:39 am    Post subject: Prospective Employee Information Package Reply with quote

Hi all,

I too have been contacted for an interview with CNA Qatar this week. I seem to have misplaced the website that details the information for prospective employees regarding housing, college practices, etc. (I believe it was posted with the March 30-cutoff EFL job ad.) Does anyone happen to have this on hand? Thanks, and good luck to the other interviewees out there.
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
MyTrunkshow



Joined: 21 Apr 2007
Posts: 231
Location: One map inch from Iraq

PostPosted: Tue Jul 17, 2007 7:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good Luck in your interview!


http://www.cna.nl.ca/TopToolBar/careers/default.asp
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
UnbelievablyAngryExpat



Joined: 01 Jul 2007
Posts: 4

PostPosted: Tue Aug 07, 2007 8:23 pm    Post subject: Al Jazeeraland #1 Reply with quote

We're due to move into this compound shortly, and we've been told that AJ1 is in a poor state compared to other CNA compounds. Can anybody shed any extra information on this? We've seen photographs of AJ2 and AJ3 and they look lovely. We've lived in the UAE for four years so we're aware of Gulf State housing standards. We've been told that AJ1 is substandard in many ways. IE - crumbly buildings????? Any info?
Back to top
View user's profile Send private message
Mine's a pint



Joined: 08 Feb 2007
Posts: 46
Location: Somewhere

PostPosted: Wed Aug 08, 2007 12:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They are not the greatest. Furniture is luck-of-the-draw. That is you might get things that are in good condition, you might not.

I was unlucky. I've managed to wash the dining room chair covers to satisfactory results. The sofa set is covered in stains, old food, marker pen and badly worn. They did replace the mattresses for me straight away.

The villas are not the cleanest. Grouting between the tiles is a problem. I've spent hours scrubbing.

The buildings are suffering from cracks in the walls from weathering etc. But all the compounds are underneath the same blazing heat and will go the same way.

The college is aware that a lot of things need replacing. A shipment of replacement furniture is due, but I'm not sure when.

I was mightily depressed when I moved in. The first villa I was taken too was not cleaned properly so I was shifted to another. Many of them have just been repainted inside. However, with some proactivity, I've managed to feel better about it: cleaning - it has to be done, and getting other furnishings to make it look like home. It can be done even though Doha does not have a big variety of furniture shops. IKEA where are you?!

The compound has a nice little clubhouse with exercise equipment on the top floor, a TV lounge and a set of computer terminals with Internet access on the ground. There's a pool with a kiddie area.

Unlike the new compounds, each villa is enclosed within its own walls which is good for not worring about small children running out into the street.

I've heard good things about the other 2 compounds, but I think there's no chance of getting over there. You'll have to make do. The college has been listening to people's anxieties - we await the results.

MaP
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 -> Qatar All times are GMT
Goto page 1, 2  Next
Page 1 of 2

 
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