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Uniservices Recruited Teachers at PNU
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 5166
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2012 3:07 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jessiemiles wrote:
I submitted my letters of employment to PNU a couple weeks ago and my salary was determined.
Now I see on the offer letter it says that I will have to submit authenticated letters as well as degrees. I've done some research and is seems the employment letters need to be certified by the department of foreign affairs.

I don't teach at PNU, but there's a process most, if not all, the Saudi govt. unis follow. In order for the uni to properly calculate your salary, you have to email them (soft) copies of your employment verification letters and authenticated degree. However, you're also required to submit hard copies of those very documents (and more) to HR the first day you report to the university. (I suggest photocopying the original verification letters in high-quality color before heading overseas so that you'll have multiple sets of these documents with you.) Once these physical docs are reviewed and approved (could take up to a couple of weeks or more), you'll finally be presented with the actual employment contract---indicating salary and such---for signing. Obviously, problems arise if 1) the teacher doesn't provide the required hard copies after arriving in country, or 2) one or more of the documents submitted are determined by the reviewing department to be "suspect."
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12487
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2012 3:54 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Procedures change. I did not at any time submit certificates of employment - or copies of educationsl degrees and diplomas to the university where I worked for 8 years !

Last edited by scot47 on Mon Dec 03, 2012 9:49 pm; edited 1 time in total
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readytotravel



Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2012 4:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

My initial one page offer said that as well, but the final contract from PNU said no such thing. When I got here, I was asked to present my original diploma and EFL certificate and they matched these against the scanned copies that I sent to Uniservices after they offered me a position. No one was asked for employment letters, though I had them handy just in case.
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readytotravel



Joined: 16 Nov 2008
Posts: 77

PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2012 4:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

cairanya wrote:
readytotravel wrote:
$1600 for transportation seems quite generous, given that we are provided transportation to and from work every day. Those of us here already are receiving 500 SAR as a transportation allowance.


Just out of curiosity, what's the situation there with health insurance and pay? I've heard rumors that things aren't going quite as expected.


I arrived mid-October and received my first paycheck a few days ago. I've had my iqama for several weeks and expect to receive an insurance card soon. Having read this forum for years before coming to Saudi, I was prepared for delays and frustration. Basically, I have no complaints. My advice to those considering the move: if you can't handle ambiguity and indifference, don't come.
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12487
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2012 4:48 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quite right
Toleration of Ambiguity is ESSENTIAL in the desert kingdom !

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ambiguity_tolerance
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Jessiemiles



Joined: 07 Jun 2012
Posts: 49
Location: Home

PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2012 9:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

joleen7 wrote:
jessiemiles-
how long did you have to wait between sending proof of previous work experience and getting PNU offer? Thanks


We've pmed, but if anyone else is waiting - it took a bit more than 3 weeks.

readytotravel wrote:
$1600 for transportation seems quite generous, given that we are provided transportation to and from work every day. Those of us here already are receiving 500 SAR as a transportation allowance.


Is that 500 monthly? if so, it works out to be about the same as what I was offered yearly I think.

cairanya wrote:
Just out of curiosity, what are your quals?

I'm thinking of all the teachers (like me) who were initially offered that, and then had it cut to $38k before going over.


I've got a related BA and MA. I taught in Asia for a year and a half, 2 years in Canada in private schools, and 3 years at two different universities. Before anyone asks, I'll explain why I'm going to Saudi instead of staying at the uni in Canada. At one uni, the contracts are renewed every 4 weeks and every 4 months at the other. It's not a pleasant way to live and I grew tired of it. Things were different, and for those grandfathered in, teaching ESL at a Canadian university is still a pretty sweet deal. I missed that train and will forever be on the contract/sessional list.


veiledsentiments wrote:
This makes no sense. There is no way that this department can verify any of these letters. Most of us have letters from people who are long gone and often employers that are long gone. I suspect that it is merely a matter of making a copy, stapling them together with a piece of paper by you swearing that these are "authentic" copies and signing in front of a notary. (then... the process depends on country - does the state have to confirm the notary? does the State Dept have to agree that it is a state? and then to foreign affairs or the embassy)


Exactly - it doesn't seem to make sense, right? I think that's why it's kinda funny. I don't know how to meet this requirement so I giggle...

veiledsentiments wrote:
If the sentence is like this, it may mean that only the degrees need to be authenticated and provided along with copies of the letters.

VS


Here's the original:

Note that this offer is conditional on the provision of the following:
1. Authenticated academic certificates.
2. Authenticated work experience certificate (specified by day, month and year).
3. Certified medical examination.

nomad soul wrote:
I don't teach at PNU, but there's a process most, if not all, the Saudi govt. unis follow. In order for the uni to properly calculate your salary, you have to email them (soft) copies of your employment verification letters and authenticated degree. However, you're also required to submit hard copies of those very documents (and more) to HR the first day you report to the university. (I suggest photocopying the original verification letters in high-quality color before heading overseas so that you'll have multiple sets of these documents with you.) Once these physical docs are reviewed and approved (could take up to a couple of weeks or more), you'll finally be presented with the actual employment contract---indicating salary and such---for signing. Obviously, problems arise if 1) the teacher doesn't provide the required hard copies after arriving in country, or 2) one or more of the documents submitted are determined by the reviewing department to be "suspect."


Thank you for the explanation and the advice. I'll be sure to make the copies and also be warned that things could possibly change once I'm there.
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Jessiemiles



Joined: 07 Jun 2012
Posts: 49
Location: Home

PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2012 9:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

scot47 wrote:
Priocedures change. I did not at any time submit certificates of employment - or copies of educationsl degrees and diplomas to the university where I worked for 8 years !


That's great Smile I submitted copies of my degrees to one of the universities I worked at a year after my first class.
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Jessiemiles



Joined: 07 Jun 2012
Posts: 49
Location: Home

PostPosted: Thu Nov 29, 2012 9:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

readytotravel wrote:
My initial one page offer said that as well, but the final contract from PNU said no such thing. When I got here, I was asked to present my original diploma and EFL certificate and they matched these against the scanned copies that I sent to Uniservices after they offered me a position. No one was asked for employment letters, though I had them handy just in case.


Thanks for this, and for your comments about how things have gone for you so far at PNU. Everybody I've spoken with says the same about ambiguity and indifference, so I'm taking it as the most important piece of advice Smile
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12487
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 7:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

500SR a month is the usual transport allowance, Yearly 6000SR whcih is US$1600 (rate is 15:4)
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joleen7



Joined: 11 Nov 2012
Posts: 16

PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 11:50 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Jessimiles:
Im hoping to be accepted for work in Saudi for the same reasons. I have been working on 10-week contracts in an Italian university for the last two years .Continuous work for 12 months seems like paradise!
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veiledsentiments



Joined: 20 Feb 2003
Posts: 16184
Location: USA

PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 3:21 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

joleen7 wrote:
Continuous work for 12 months seems like paradise!

Be careful what you wish for. Laughing Everything is a trade-off and I'd suspect that your living and working conditions in Italy are significantly nicer and certainly more fun.

The reality is that a significant number of teachers go to Saudi and don't even make it through the first month. (I know of people who left the next flight that they could get on...) It requires an adaptive person with a good sense of humor and appreciation of the absurd.

VS
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joleen7



Joined: 11 Nov 2012
Posts: 16

PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 4:12 pm    Post subject: careful what u wish for Reply with quote

yes, I have been aware for many years about aspects of KSA, which is why I never applied when I was younger and more fun-loving Wink I don't imagine it will be easy at all..but in terms of bureaucracy I think southern Italy competes well.And the insecurity of 10 week contracts here is good training for some of the stresses of KSA, I hope !
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scot47



Joined: 10 Jan 2003
Posts: 12487
Location: Ultima Thule

PostPosted: Fri Nov 30, 2012 5:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

For many, after years of teaching EFL at near or below subsistence, coming to KSA to teach is a chance to have a decent income for a change !
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Jessiemiles



Joined: 07 Jun 2012
Posts: 49
Location: Home

PostPosted: Sat Dec 01, 2012 1:22 am    Post subject: Re: careful what u wish for Reply with quote

joleen7 wrote:
And the insecurity of 10 week contracts here is good training for some of the stresses of KSA, I hope !


I agree. Teaching under short-term contracts for a prolonged amount of time builds a certain tolerance for unsettling working conditions. Not to mention prepping for a full course load with 2 days notice, no curriculum, and the promise of a contract that isn't produced and signed until more than a month into the semester. These steps are repeated without a real mental rest between semesters as there is no paid vacation option in short-term contract land.

Your situation may not be exactly the same as mine, but I'll bet it's pretty close Laughing
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Jessiemiles



Joined: 07 Jun 2012
Posts: 49
Location: Home

PostPosted: Sat Dec 08, 2012 6:55 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

After I asked about the visa and was told it was paid for, my recruiter called me back and told me it was not. My contract has the illegal clause:

cairanya wrote:
According to the email: "G. The Second Party (i.e., me) shall be obliged to the fully cost of expatriation, resident permit (lqama), work permit, and annual exit/re-entry visa issuance fees, The Second Party will also fully pay the sponsorship transfer fees for locally-hired employees, limited to SR. 2,000 (Two Thousand Saudi Riyais), and only for the first sponsorship transfer fee."


And I found out about authenticating letters of employment. As readytotravel mentioned, the offer letter says they need to be authenticated but it's actually not necessary. The employment visa application only requires you to authenticate degrees, and PNU's final contract doesn't mention employment letters.

Also, for anyone accepting a contract starting in January, summer vacation may not happen. The 60 days are part of the contract, but there is a clause that says they can be cancelled or shortened so that you work the summer semester for extra compensation.
Also, the vacation time is pro-rated from your start date. If 60 days are due after two semesters, then if follows 30 days would be given after one semester, less if you start after the beginning of the semester due to visa delays. You will either be asked to work and given extra compensation for the 30 days, or sent on vacation with half the pay, the other half owed at completion of the one year contract.
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