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macandcheese



Joined: 06 Oct 2011
Posts: 19

PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 6:01 am    Post subject: Been searching, but... Reply with quote

I've been a follower of the Cafe for a couple of years. Long story short, I'm 30, male, American, and in grad school (PhD track) for psychology but don't like it. I've fantasized for years about teaching English overseas -- living abroad is a primary career objective for me (I've spent 4 years in Egypt and Ireland), but have several reservations. In sum:
1) I'm HIV-positive so I'm limited in which countries I have as an option
--- i.e. South Korea and China, both of which I've read as being recommended for newbies, are out of the question due to governmental restrictions;
2) I have a good amount of student loans to repay
--- i.e. South America isn't really an option....;
3) While I have about 3-4 years experience as a TA in an unrelated field (psychology) and am currently volunteering as an ESL tutor for students in my local community, the majority of my experience isn't directly related to education. I'm more than happy to take the CELTA but would rather do it overseas, where it's vastly cheaper (as opposed to Boston or NYC, the closest cities to me).

Basically, should I consider TEFL as a viable career move within the next year or so, given needs/restrictions, or resign myself to only seeing the world one week at a time, once every year, as a tourist?
(Alternatively, I could REALLY shoot for the stars and apply for the US Foreign Service, but as I stand now, that's well beyond any hope for me.)
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santi84



Joined: 14 Mar 2008
Posts: 854
Location: under da sea

PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 11:02 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

How much money are we talking when it comes to student loans and medications related to your illness?

As far as I am aware, Japan will not exclude you based on your HIV positive status.

If you want to do TEFL so you can travel frequently, I'm afraid that the jobs which provide the most money are ones that will exclude you (Korea as you've already said, the Gulf - due to lack of credentials).
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nomad soul



Joined: 31 Jan 2010
Posts: 3840
Location: Terra firma

PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 12:10 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dherres:

If you do a search on this site using HIV blood test as the criteria, you'll find several threads about this subject. Also, check out http://www.hivtravel.org/ for a list of countries and their restrictions. Although the site is specific to travel and not work visa requirements, it will at least give you an idea of where you might be able to teach.
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cairanya



Joined: 02 Jun 2012
Posts: 62

PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 5:12 pm    Post subject: Re: Been searching, but... Reply with quote

dherres wrote:
I've been a follower of the Cafe for a couple of years. Long story short, I'm 30, male, American, and in grad school (PhD track) for psychology but don't like it. I've fantasized for years about teaching English overseas -- living abroad is a primary career objective for me (I've spent 4 years in Egypt and Ireland), but have several reservations. In sum:
1) I'm HIV-positive so I'm limited in which countries I have as an option
--- i.e. South Korea and China, both of which I've read as being recommended for newbies, are out of the question due to governmental restrictions;
2) I have a good amount of student loans to repay
--- i.e. South America isn't really an option....;
3) While I have about 3-4 years experience as a TA in an unrelated field (psychology) and am currently volunteering as an ESL tutor for students in my local community, the majority of my experience isn't directly related to education. I'm more than happy to take the CELTA but would rather do it overseas, where it's vastly cheaper (as opposed to Boston or NYC, the closest cities to me).

Basically, should I consider TEFL as a viable career move within the next year or so, given needs/restrictions, or resign myself to only seeing the world one week at a time, once every year, as a tourist?
(Alternatively, I could REALLY shoot for the stars and apply for the US Foreign Service, but as I stand now, that's well beyond any hope for me.)


A friend of mine was in a very similar position, but with lymphoma. Here's what she did.

Get a night job as a bartender or as a casino card dealer, save $3000-4000, hire a lawyer, and get the student loans discharged in bankruptcy. It IS possible, but you absolutely have to hire a lawyer to do it and the requirements vary by state. (DO NOT USE Legal Aid because they just give "advice" you can find via Google and don't really do anything helpful. You need the lawyer because they search the legal databases you need searched and write the briefs for the adversarial proceedings you'll need to go through.) Your HIV status may make it easier in some states than in others.

With that gone, the EFL track may be more financially viable.

Also, her attorney advised her to form a shell corporation, sell junk on eBay, and get insurance through that because it'd be cheaper and she could get more covered than through the individual market. Ask about whether that's legal in your state.
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cairanya



Joined: 02 Jun 2012
Posts: 62

PostPosted: Sun Oct 14, 2012 5:26 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Also, can't you teach abroad as a research PhD in psych?
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coledavis



Joined: 21 Jun 2003
Posts: 1831

PostPosted: Wed Oct 17, 2012 9:26 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Russia's also out, as each visa requires a test for HIV (also TB, syphilis and leprosy).
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