I chose SamuiTEFL because of the consistent and positive reviews. The quality of the program and the teaching was raved about, and my experience confirmed the high praise. Plus, how can you beat going to school next to gorgeous beaches? I knew early on that the people running the program were committed to answering questions and providing resources, and, as a newbie to traveling, that was just what I needed.
Originally from the US, Maggie is currently teaching in Hua Hin, Thailand.
Why did you choose this program?
What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?
SamuiTEFL helped to organize our living accommodations and pick-up from the airport. They were continuously helpful with explaining visa policies and procurement. The program guided me through the job placement process after earning the TEFL certificate as well. Travel plans were independently organized.
What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?
I would advise that you go into an overseas program with an open mind, and that you give yourself time to adjust. You may not acclimate overnight and that's okay. Know that simple things, like finding a bank or a good cup of coffee, are sometimes the challenge of the day. Keep water, patience and some flexibility on you wherever you go, and you'll be soaring.
What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?
Monday - Friday you will be in class from about 8-4, and then evenings and weekends are yours. There may be some times when you'll be prepping outside of class, but you will have more than enough time to enjoy the island as well. In class, there is so much to soak up, so keep yourself rested and ready to learn.
Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?
I think one of my biggest fears was navigating the language barriers. I have been lucky in that, everywhere I have been, English has been quite commonly used (at least a little). However, good manners and smiles are universal and knowing just a little useful language can get you very far. Many people are very gracious to travelers and understand that you are a fish out of water. I'm so grateful for them!
What did you like most in the program?
Travel is very humbling and not nearly as glamorous as you might think. I have sweat stains in 80 percent of my travel photos. The littlest things become the biggest victories. Finding my way from point A to point B is something to celebrate. For as much as a challenge as travel can be, it is rewarding and invigorating to know you can navigate new experiences.