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Arriving in Bogota in May 2011
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RayMarkDane



Joined: 25 Dec 2010
Posts: 9
Location: Ely Cambridgeshire

PostPosted: Sun Jan 09, 2011 9:28 pm    Post subject: Arriving in Bogota in May 2011 Reply with quote

Hello Everyone,

I am a newbie here and to ESL in general. I have been reading the forum for a while and now the time has come to join in. For better, or worse I have decided to change career and scenery.

I am about to embark on the CELTA at IH in Bogota from May.
There are several questions I would like to ask some of the more knowledgeable people on the ground, so to speak...

My course will be completed at the end of May and hopefully, I shall hold a shiny new CELTA certificate.

Firstly, am I standing there with a certificate, an honours degree and some part-time UK college experience behind me, completely at the wrong time of the year to seek work in Colombia?

Secondly, would I be in a position to apply to local schools directly?

I am remaining for one month after completion of the course to seek work. Is this enough time, or should I allow more time? Perhaps two months post course?

Another thing in the back of my mind is the topic of Business English or various other areas of technical English. For instance, I have a technical background in IT and a technical background in Construction. I have run my own small business based in the UK, whilst working across western and eastern Europe.

After gaining more teaching experience, would this past experience stand me in good stead if I wanted to teach business/technical English?

Thank you for any information in advance.

Regards,

Ray

PS. Isn't it strange how you double check your grammer and spelling when posting to a bunch of teachers LOL
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CountBassD



Joined: 08 Feb 2010
Posts: 33
Location: Bogota, Colombia

PostPosted: Tue Jan 11, 2011 11:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You will get a job with IH almost certainly (if you want it), and in that job you will almost definitely be teaching business English to business people in the company Siemens. Unless you want to work for a university or another type of regular school, you will definitely be teaching business english through an institute because that's all there is really. It doesn't matter what time of year you show up either because institutes hire year round. Again, regular schools are a different story. A month will be more than enough, you will get a job within 2 weeks and probably in the first week.

I did my celta at IH bogota also, if you are able to deal with unexpected problems, willing to work all day, and able to take on criticism and show it in your lessons(the most important thing) you'll be fine.

P.S. Grammar. Wink
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RayMarkDane



Joined: 25 Dec 2010
Posts: 9
Location: Ely Cambridgeshire

PostPosted: Tue Jan 11, 2011 11:43 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Well, at least one of you teacher types is on the ball... I am pleased that teachers still have a sense of humour ! (I say 'you teacher types' a bit tongue in cheek as I will be one of you soon enough... I hope!)

After reading the stories of others experiences around the globe, it is obvious that a sense of humour is a pre-requisite...

Anyway, thank you for your reply it is appreciated.

It would be good to learn about the experiences of someone who may have started their own school in Colombia... I have seen one such post. However, it seems to have stopped short of the details and the current position of the business...

Regards, Ray - Landing in Bog' in May
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RayMarkDane



Joined: 25 Dec 2010
Posts: 9
Location: Ely Cambridgeshire

PostPosted: Tue Jan 11, 2011 11:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

... Can I add a question CountBassD?

What are the chances of landing a position within a school?
I understand the salary is reasonable, and the work is very demanding...
But would a degree and a CELTA get you in the door for an interview?

Ray
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windowlicker



Joined: 05 Jun 2008
Posts: 183
Location: BogotŠ, Colombia

PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2011 3:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

RayMarkDane wrote:
... Can I add a question CountBassD?
But would a degree and a CELTA get you in the door for an interview


There's a really good thread somewhere in the Colombia forum on this already. Short answer: yes.

Here's the tread: http://forums.eslcafe.com/job/viewtopic.php?p=899912&highlight=#899912

in my opinion, several people in this thread don't know what they're talking about, but there is also some good info directed specifically at the question you just asked.
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G22



Joined: 25 Oct 2010
Posts: 89

PostPosted: Thu Jan 13, 2011 10:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Yeah you shouldn't have any problem getting a job with a degree and a CELTA.
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RayMarkDane



Joined: 25 Dec 2010
Posts: 9
Location: Ely Cambridgeshire

PostPosted: Sat Jan 15, 2011 9:40 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thank you all for your comments on this thread.

I did read on this forum that the salary levels at the College's are quite reasonable in Bogota, something like $COP 3 - 4 000 000 per month. Is that correct?

If it is, how do the college's compare in other cities like Medellin?

I would like to ask if anyone knows how feasible it is, to also find work at a college in more rural cities/towns say, in the Santander region, or by the coast... Cartegena for instance?

Any replies are greatly appreciated.

Ray
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windowlicker



Joined: 05 Jun 2008
Posts: 183
Location: BogotŠ, Colombia

PostPosted: Sun Jan 16, 2011 5:31 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
I would like to ask if anyone knows how feasible it is, to also find work at a college in more rural cities/towns say, in the Santander region, or by the coast... Cartegena for instance?


generally, I think you'll find one high school in each of the smaller cities that will pay a decent salary. having said that, there's an old Colombian saying: "small city, big hell." Having lived in a smaller city for a little over a year now, I would recommend sticking with the big cities (Bogota, Medellin, Barranquilla, Cali, Cartagena), at least until after you've already been in Colombia a while. Especially as a teacher and a foreigner, there's a gossip culture in the smaller cities that's really difficult to deal with. Even in cities of 500,000 people it's impossible to go anywhere without seeing a student, and whatever you're doing and whoever you're with (no matter how mundane what you're doing may seem to you), the entire school will know about it the next day. If you're relatively young, small cities are also tough because it's difficult to meet other young, educated people - they all leave for the big cities. If you can find a school willing to get you a visa, it seems to be quite easy to get jobs in smaller cities as you face almost no competition - very few qualified people are willing to work in the smaller cities.

Santander is nice, and the capital, Bucaramanga, is nearly a million people I think, so that could be a decent option for you...I'm sure there's a decent-paying school there.

to answer another of your questions, Medellin is notoriously tough to break into legal teaching options. Not sure why this is exactly...the international schools there seem to hire licensed teachers at recruiting fairs abroad, and from everything I've heard there aren't many other schools that will deal with the paperwork for the visa, and there's stiff competition for the positions that do exist.
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Captain_Fil



Joined: 06 Jan 2011
Posts: 604
Location: California - the land of fruits and nuts

PostPosted: Mon Jan 24, 2011 9:43 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

From one newbie to another: GOOD LUCK!

May your career dreams come true.

Smile
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RayMarkDane



Joined: 25 Dec 2010
Posts: 9
Location: Ely Cambridgeshire

PostPosted: Sat Jan 29, 2011 8:39 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks for the encouragement Captain...

I owuld like to ask anyone here, if there are any schools/colleges or even institutes in the city of Pereira worth contacting for work?

Any information is very much appreciated. CELTA course all paid up, now to get the flights arranged.

I found flights from London City Airport with Lufthansa, via Frankfurt direct to Bogota... anyone taken this route that can comment? Is there a better option perhaps?

Thank you for your posts guys.

Ray
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kakki81



Joined: 06 Dec 2010
Posts: 9
Location: Suwon, South Korea

PostPosted: Tue May 03, 2011 11:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Good luck to you Ray, and I guess you've already started the program so hope it goes well. If you get the chance feel free to update this as to how you're finding Colombia and the celta program at IH. I'm planning on coming to Bogota in June and I see there's not a celta there till August, just wondering if it's worth it. I do have a tefl (and two years experience in Korea) so I know that'll be enough to get work at some places, but not all.
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maxmaxmilan



Joined: 13 May 2011
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Wed Sep 28, 2011 12:25 pm    Post subject: Any updates Ray? Reply with quote

Hi Ray,

Great to find your post as I'm in a similar position. I'm coming to Colombia on 28th October to look for work, then going to Ecuador to do a CELTA at Southern Cross on 14 Nov.

It would be really good to hear if you've found work either in a language institute or a school (once I get to five posts I'll PM you!)

Max
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maxmaxmilan



Joined: 13 May 2011
Posts: 8

PostPosted: Thu Sep 29, 2011 8:57 pm    Post subject: Posting so I can get to 5 posts and PM - mods please delete! Reply with quote

I hope it's ok to post like this - I read somewhere it's ok!
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Regi



Joined: 18 May 2014
Posts: 11
Location: Halifax, UK

PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 5:37 am    Post subject: Hi Ray! Reply with quote

I know it's been a good while since you posted here originally, but how did it work out for you? I'm seriously considering going to Colombia and would like to know where you ended up and how you like/liked it there.

Best regards,

Regi
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 11451
Location: The real world

PostPosted: Sun Sep 11, 2016 6:43 am    Post subject: Re: Hi Ray! Reply with quote

Regi wrote:
I know it's been a good while since you posted here originally, but how did it work out for you? I'm seriously considering going to Colombia and would like to know where you ended up and how you like/liked it there.

Best regards,

Regi

This thread is more than 5 years old; those posters may no longer be in Colombia.

Try a more recent thread: 3 weeks in Bogot√° - thoughts?
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