Have you ever dreamed of working in China? Chile? India? Brazil?
Is this something you’ve been thinking about for years, but you’re uncertain about how to make it happen?
Here’s my illustrated guide to finding a career-building job in a foreign country. I’ve created this model based on my 7+ years in China and Chile, as well as countless conversations with current and future expats. This deck features whimsical nautical drawings by Chilean artist Ignacio Barceló, and shows that finding an awesome job abroad requires a bit more than a Google search — it’s a collaborative process that involves understanding your own motives and goals, doing your research, taking leaps, building strong local networks, recognizing your value in the local economy, and so much more.
I’m in the process of creating more resources on this topic, and if you’d like to schedule an appointment to discuss this in more detail, please feel free to email me directly. Thanks!!
To help you get started on your research, here’s a long list of links to articles, blogs, programs, and websites that might give you inspiration or guidance. (Note: None of these are affiliate links. I know the people behind some links, but not all.)
Articles I’ve written about living and working abroad:
- Get Your International Career in Gear: Advice, Diagrams, and Links from our Cal Career Center Presentation
- How to Launch Your Career Overseas (Brazen Careerist).
Blogs and Online Resources:
- Ana Elisa Miranda. A Brazilian based in Belgium, Ana has written a helpful eBook about her experiences as an au pair in the US and Belgium.
- Atlas Sliced. Alexa Hart has interviewed dozens of fascinating people about their experiences living and working abroad. She’s an enthusiastic and detailed interviewer (she interviewed me in slice #12) and her list of resources is excellent.
- Brazil Career Blueprint. Ilya Brotzky created this detailed resource for anyone interested in living and working in Brazil. I met him in Sao Paulo. He’s super resourceful and well-connected.
- Career Hack. Career Hack exists to help Gen Y adapt to and thrive in the rapidly changing global economy. Get out of your recession-stricken developed western economy and pursue opportunities in dynamic emerging markets.
- Chile Expat Guide. Nathan Lustig, serial entrepreneur based in Chile, created this useful list of recommendations and wrote a Kindle book about expat life here.
- Global Career Compass. Veteran global career advisor Marty Tillman blogs about navigating career pathways for students and international educators and guides universities as they create new programs in these areas.
- Global Niche. Longtime expats Anastasia Ashman and Tara Agacayak have teamed up to create a community and courses about how to create global work/life solutions to reach offline goals through online presence.
- Stacie Berdan. Stacie is the author of four books about international careers: Get Ahead by Going Abroad, Go Global, A Student Guide to Study Abroad, and Raising Global Children. She worked in Hong Kong for several years, and gives practical advice for every step of the journey.
- Small Planet Studio. Cate Brubaker is an intercultural educator. She’s particularly passionate about re-entry: helping people that have returned from abroad create their next adventure.
- Tatiana in Flux. In her own words: “Hi! I’m Tatiana Hanebutte. In September 2011, I quit my social media job, packed up my life and toddler, and moved from Alabama to Germany. Most people who know me weren’t that surprised at my choice: I’ve always been a bit weird, a bit of a square peg. So pulling up roots and moving to a foreign country was kind of a logical progression.”
- Travel Junkette. Susan Shain writes about working her way around the world with seasonal and online jobs. Her enthusiasm is contagious and her blog is full of photos and practical tips.
- Fulbright. The Fulbright Program, the U.S. government’s flagship program in international educational exchange, was proposed to the U.S. Congress in 1945 by then freshman Senator J. William Fulbright of Arkansas. In the aftermath of World War II, Senator Fulbright viewed the proposed program as a much-needed vehicle for promoting “mutual understanding between the people of the United States and the people of other countries of the world.” His vision was approved by Congress and the program signed into law by President Truman in 1946.
- Luce. Luce Scholars Program is a nationally competitive fellowship program. It was launched by the Henry Luce Foundation in 1974 to enhance the understanding of Asia among potential leaders in American society. The program provides stipends, language training, and individualized professional placement in Asia for 15-18 Luce Scholars each year, and welcomes applications from college seniors, graduate students, and young professionals in a variety of fields who have had limited exposure to Asia.
- Alfa Fellowship Program
Professional development program annually providing accomplished young Americans and Britons the opportunity to live abroad and work at leading Russian organizations.
- Robert Bosch Foundation Fellowship
Comprehensive professional development program in Germany for accomplished young Americans in business, economics, journalism, law, and public policy.
- EMGIP Fellowship
One to three-month program providing U.S. and Canadian students with internships in the German state parliament.
- Baden-Württemberg STIPENDIUM WISP Fellowship
Three month summer work-study immersion program in Germany exclusively for college students in vocational fields.
- IWA Germany | IWA Switzerland Work Authorization Services for Interns and Trainees
An independent program providing U.S. students completing internships in Germany and recent graduates completing traineeships in Switzerland with work authorization and support needed to succeed abroad.
- AIESEC. Present in over 113 countries and territories and with over 86000 members, AIESEC is the world’s largest student-run organisation. (When I worked in China I met tons of enthusiastic AIESEC interns and trainees from all over the world.)
- The Intern Group. Driving innovation in education and advancing careers through international internship programs in London, Madrid, Hong Kong & Latin America. (I met the founders of this company through Start-Up Chile).
- Congress-Bundestag Youth Exchange for Young Professionals (CBYX)
Full year, reciprocal work-study scholarship program providing U.S. students and young professionals with an understanding of everyday life, education, and professional training in Germany.
- Cultural Vistas Fellowship
A multinational program providing underrepresented U.S. university students with funded opportunities to enrich their academic learning through professional internship and immersion experiences in Argentina, Germany, and Singapore.
- IAESTE United States
Reciprocal exchange providing career-
Teaching English as a Foreign Language:
- Bridge TEFL. I know several people who have taken these training courses, in both Chile and Europe.
- CIEE Teach in China/Chile/Thailand/Korea/etc. This is the program that brought me to China in 2006.
- Dave’s ESL Café. This website is a goldmine for ESL teachers. It’s filled with listings for jobs all over the world, an idea cookbook for lesson plans, forums about various countries and topics. You can post your resumé and within hours schools will start to court you.
- Footprints Recruiting. A company that recruits ESL teachers in many countries.
- Serious Teachers. This website includes job listings from many countries.
Special Entrepreneurship Programs:
- SEED. Startups and Entrepreneurship Ecosystem Development. In Minas Gerais, Brazil.
- Startup Brazil. Start-Up Brasil is a federal program, developed by the Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MCTI) to support newborn technology-oriented startups, and connect them to accelerators.
I hope this list is helpful! (Note: None of these are affiliate links. I know the people behind some links, but not all.)
Here’s to your adventures!
P.S. I’d love to hear from you and hear all about your goals and dreams. Write to me any time: firstname.lastname@example.org!