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Old 11-26-2012, 02:07 PM
 
Location: Bike to Surf!
3,080 posts, read 9,943,917 times
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I'm interested in moving to and working in Taiwan for anywhere from a few years, to forever. I'm most interested in working in Taipei, but I'd also love to work in Yilan or Hua'Lien. I don't have much interest in Kaohsung or other cities on the West coast. Unfortunately, I have no idea how to go about doing this. My company has only a few limited openings in Taipei, and they're not really aligned with my skills.

For those of you who are expats working in another country; did you choose to go, or were you sent by your employer? In what industry are you employed? Did you speak the language, or did you take classes and pick it up while you were there?

I could relocate to Taipei, take Mandarin courses, teach English (with our without a certification) and get by ok, but I'd rather hold down a "real" job. I'm highly skilled in my field of engineering, and I think I'd make a reasonable hand at business or sales (except for the language barrier).

I'm also interested in Hong Kong or cities on the East Coast of Japan. Comments? Suggestions?
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Old 11-29-2012, 09:13 AM
 
32,089 posts, read 32,994,562 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sponger42 View Post
I could relocate to Taipei, take Mandarin courses, teach English (with our without a certification) and get by ok, but I'd rather hold down a "real" job. I'm highly skilled in my field of engineering, and I think I'd make a reasonable hand at business or sales (except for the language barrier).

Teaching English is a real job if it is done properly with the proper training beforehand. To get a good pay teaching English one has to have certification. To get an English teaching job at university (with a decent local salary) one needs to have a university degree and in many cases a M.A. even in Asian countries.
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Old 11-30-2012, 04:49 AM
 
Location: Macao
15,945 posts, read 36,175,100 times
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I'm teaching English in Japan.

All kinds of expats doing all kinds of things, but if you're moving to Taiwan without many skills, than, by default, you'll most likely be teaching English as well.

(Additionally, you can get very well-skilled at 'teaching English' and make it into a career as well.

By the way, uni teachers in Taiwan are paid very low, and difficult to get. Most English teaching in Taiwan, is centered around teaching kids.
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Old 11-30-2012, 06:31 AM
 
Location: Bike to Surf!
3,080 posts, read 9,943,917 times
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My apologies, I didn't mean to insult English teachers. It is, indeed, a real job for those who have trained for it throughout their lives. Since I'm an engineer with 10+ years of work/postgrad experience, it wouldn't be a "real" job for me because it wouldn't be what I'm trained to do, I'd have to start out at the bottom of the totem pole, and who knows if I'd like it/be any good at it? Especially since I'm not yet fluent in Mandarin and I can read about 3 characters out of the 10,000+ standard set that any schoolchild knows.

I've done some collaborative technical work in Taiwanese universities already, and I've been sent to various locations in Asia doing technical customer support by my current company, but those are trips lasting days to weeks, and I'd like to relocate permanently. I'm hoping to hear from STEM or Business types, since that's where my skills are. I was thinking more of technical sales rep, engineering customer support, or subcontractor oversight, since my skill would be in writing/reading/interpreting/implementing technical documents, contracts, and specs originating from customers in the US. Do Taiwanese (or other country's) companies ever hire from outside of the country if they need technical liaisons to work with US customers, suppliers, or contractors? Or should I look for US companies who want to send a rep to Taiwan? Any suggestions on how to go about finding those?
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Old 11-30-2012, 06:43 AM
 
Location: Bike to Surf!
3,080 posts, read 9,943,917 times
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My apologies, I didn't mean to insult English teachers. It is, indeed, a real job for those who have trained for it throughout their lives. Since I'm an engineer with 10+ years of work/postgrad experience, it wouldn't be a "real" job for me because it wouldn't be what I'm trained to do, I'd have to start out at the bottom of the totem pole, and who knows if I'd like it/be any good at it? Especially since I'm not yet fluent in Mandarin and I can read about 3 characters out of the 10,000+ standard set that any schoolchild knows.

I've done some collaborative technical work in Taiwanese universities already, and I've been sent to various locations in Asia doing technical customer support by my current company, but those are trips lasting days to weeks, and I'd like to relocate permanently. I'm hoping to hear from STEM or Business types, since that's where my skills are. I was thinking more of technical sales rep, engineering customer support, or subcontractor oversight, since my skill would be in writing/reading/interpreting/implementing technical documents, contracts, and specs originating from customers in the US. Do Taiwanese (or other country's) companies ever hire from outside of the country if they need technical liaisons to work with US customers, suppliers, or contractors? Or should I look for US companies who want to send a rep to Taiwan? Any suggestions on how to go about finding those?
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Old 12-01-2012, 08:33 PM
 
Location: Macao
15,945 posts, read 36,175,100 times
Reputation: 9483
Quote:
Originally Posted by sponger42 View Post
My apologies, I didn't mean to insult English teachers. It is, indeed, a real job for those who have trained for it throughout their lives. Since I'm an engineer with 10+ years of work/postgrad experience, it wouldn't be a "real" job for me because it wouldn't be what I'm trained to do, I'd have to start out at the bottom of the totem pole, and who knows if I'd like it/be any good at it? Especially since I'm not yet fluent in Mandarin and I can read about 3 characters out of the 10,000+ standard set that any schoolchild knows.

I've done some collaborative technical work in Taiwanese universities already, and I've been sent to various locations in Asia doing technical customer support by my current company, but those are trips lasting days to weeks, and I'd like to relocate permanently. I'm hoping to hear from STEM or Business types, since that's where my skills are. I was thinking more of technical sales rep, engineering customer support, or subcontractor oversight, since my skill would be in writing/reading/interpreting/implementing technical documents, contracts, and specs originating from customers in the US. Do Taiwanese (or other country's) companies ever hire from outside of the country if they need technical liaisons to work with US customers, suppliers, or contractors? Or should I look for US companies who want to send a rep to Taiwan? Any suggestions on how to go about finding those?
It's a myth that you need to know the local language to teach English. Most students that would have a native english teacher, would be at a much higher level. If there English was so bad, that they needed a foreigner to translate everything into their local language, than they'd most likely hire a local at a tenth the cost of a foreigner.

But, anyways, with your technical training, it does seem like that would be a better route to follow. However, generally speaking, for non-english teacher work, you generally would know the local language very well, to get those types of jobs within the country.

You'd be best off looking for the US companies looking to send a rep to Taiwan. Not sure how that works, I always imagined that was somewhat internal within the companies themselves.
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Old 12-01-2012, 08:43 PM
 
188 posts, read 449,892 times
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Dr Stephen Krashen and his famous video on how to teach in the target language.


StephenKrashenscomprehensibleinput.flv - YouTube
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Old 12-02-2012, 03:26 AM
 
Location: City of Angels
2,935 posts, read 4,768,423 times
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edit

Last edited by foadi; 12-02-2012 at 03:51 AM..
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Old 12-02-2012, 10:14 AM
 
Location: Bike to Surf!
3,080 posts, read 9,943,917 times
Reputation: 2978
Thanks, Tiger. Yes, I know that I can teach English without being conversationally fluent in Mandarin. If I were to go the teaching route, I would probably take classes just for my own edification. As long as I'm getting into the language business, might as well dive all the way in. By the way, can you speak/read Japanese?

If I did decide to try teaching English, do you have any general suggestions for certifications or other preparations I should make? Any coursework I can do online or at night to make myself more appealing?

I believe you're right about the internal thing. I don't know if there are any consulting firms which might specialize in Taiwan-US technical exchange. Guess I can start by googling that.
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Old 12-02-2012, 11:47 PM
 
Location: Macao
15,945 posts, read 36,175,100 times
Reputation: 9483
Quote:
Originally Posted by sponger42 View Post
Thanks, Tiger. Yes, I know that I can teach English without being conversationally fluent in Mandarin. If I were to go the teaching route, I would probably take classes just for my own edification. As long as I'm getting into the language business, might as well dive all the way in. By the way, can you speak/read Japanese?

If I did decide to try teaching English, do you have any general suggestions for certifications or other preparations I should make? Any coursework I can do online or at night to make myself more appealing?

I believe you're right about the internal thing. I don't know if there are any consulting firms which might specialize in Taiwan-US technical exchange. Guess I can start by googling that.
I'm a bit weak with Japanese.

Coursework. Generally a TESOL Certificate, or any acrynym related to it - TESL, TESOL, etc. It's not really required for most of Asia though, but it gives you confidence when you enter into the first classroom of your life, if you haven't taught before.

Taiwan isn't as huge a market as say China or Korea (where anyone with a pulse and a college degree, can immediately get a job). But, there is always some kind of esl work available though, in a place like Taiwan.

Generally, from talking to others, most of the work in Taiwan, is teaching kids though. Which may or may not be fine for you, depending what kind of person you are.
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