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Nepal is a land of much variety and disparity. Teaching there can be a great way to not only educate people in need, but explore a truly magical location.
Despite being landlocked, the country has some of the most diverse terrain in the world, from the tropical and subtropical Terai (lowland plains) in the south to the central Pahad (hill region) where snow sometimes falls in the winters to the Parbat (mountain region) with incredibly high elevations and alpine weather. Near the northern border, you can find eight of the ten tallest mountains in the world, including Sagarmatha - or as the Western world knows it, Mt. Everest.
Many schools are understaffed either because the government hasn't allocated enough funds or because they are in locations so remote that teachers don't want to go there. That's why it's so important for educated people from other countries to come to Nepal and share their knowledge. What may be boring and prosaic to a highly-educated Nepali from the big city could end up being the adventure of a lifetime for someone from outside the country.
Imagine living in a rustic Nepalese village and immersing yourself in the local culture while you teach English or some other important subject to the people there. You'll truly feel like you're in another world in the bucolic setting, and are sure to be surprised by the willingness of the villagers to learn from you so that they can improve their lot in life.
Or you can find a program that will allow you to teach in a private school in one of the bigger Nepalese cities. You'll enjoy all of the comforts of modern life while still surrounding yourself in a completely foreign environment with unfamiliar customs and people.
And, of course, part of the joy of teaching abroad is that you have the ability to travel and explore in this incredible foreign land. Anyone who enjoys mountain-climbing will be in absolute heaven in Nepal, but the wide variety of terrain and temperatures means that there is something for just about everyone to enjoy.
There are a huge number of programs and schools that will help you to teach abroad in Nepal. The largest number, by far, are those schools that help people to gain TEFL certificates to Teach English as a Foreign Language or TESOL certificates that allow you to Teach English to Speakers of Other Languages. Armed with an internationally recognized TEFL or TESOL certificate, you can travel almost anywhere in the world and get paid to help people learn how to speak and write in English.
Most recognized TEFL and TESOL programs don't require you to have a background in teaching or even to speak the native language of the country where you'll be headed. All that's necessary is that you have an excellent command of English, willingness to travel, and dedication to helping others. Most programs can be completed in a matter of weeks, and some even offer the promise of jobs or relocation funds to their students.
If you're interested in having the adventure of a lifetime while making a difference in the lives of others, teaching in Nepal is an experience you'll never forget.
Aileen is part of the team behind Open Colleges and InformED, one of Australia's leading providers of Open Learning and distance education. When not working, Aileen blogs about education and career. She is often invited as a speaker in Personality Development Seminars in the Philippines.
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