Charles Sturt University logo
A Guide to Working Abroad in 2024

A Guide to Working Abroad in 2024


‘Make your future self proud by starting the process today, and wherever you go, I hope you travel far enough and wide enough that you meet yourself.’

Written by James Schumann

With 2023 now already past its midpoint, I, along with many other final year students, find myself on the threshold of fresh beginnings and untapped opportunities.

While the next 6 months will undoubtedly bring about its usual recipe of lethargy, mixed with test anxiety, and don’t forget to add a touch of fast-impending deadlines; it will also prompt self-reflection, and the need to make decisions that will affect the trajectory of our lives.

If you’re anything like me, you’re feeling a little apprehensive about inking that contract to condemn you to that full time job. Or at least I was. Let me explain…

Offers of full-time employment

As offers for employment started to emerge earlier this year, I, just as quickly, began feeling the pressure as I deliberated over whether I was ready to sign a full-time teaching contract.

Sure, it’s what I’d been working towards for the last 4 years. But I couldn’t help the feeling.

Something wasn’t sitting right, and it was only until a mentor of mine proposed the idea of working abroad in 2024 that I felt a spark of excitement, yet I couldn’t envision it as a genuine possibility.

I’ve never been overseas before, and I just didn’t know where to start. It seemed like too big a move, too much paperwork, too big a change, so I forgot about it.

2 weeks went by, and I was still fielding offers for casual employment in local schools. Nothing had really got me champing at the bit for next year, and my future remained uncertain.

Taking a turn for the worse

Things took a major turn for the worse when I was struck down with an ACL rupture during a game of rugby league, and I was left with a few months off work, stuck on the couch, whilst I recovered from surgery.

After a couple of weeks, my re-runs of Red Dead Redemption 2 became boring, and I’d watched so many episodes of Seinfeld that I was starting to talk with an American accent. It was then that I remembered the idea to teach overseas.

Perusing some of the recruitment websites seemed like a more productive activity than gaming or binge-watching. Soon enough, the scrolling turned to phone calls with customer service people, which turned to Zoom calls with potential employers.

I couldn’t believe the opportunities on offer, and how lucky I was to have discovered them before it was too late. I’ve made it my mission to tell final year Charles Sturt students about it before the opportunity passes them by!

ACL reconstruction surgery is not fun, but the time off work can be very useful. It was during recovery that I discovered a plethora of agencies recruiting Aussie teachers to different countries.

ACL reconstruction surgery is not fun, but the time off work can be very useful. It was during recovery that I discovered a plethora of agencies recruiting Aussie teachers to different countries.

Travelling Abroad

Travelling abroad is a refreshing alternative that graduates can undertake as a means of facilitating professional development and catalysing personal growth.

In an age of globalisation, interconnectedness, and rapid technological evolvement, the demand for an increasingly diversified set of skills is higher than ever before.

Cross-cultural experiences cultivate an environment for graduate students to gain expertise in an array of different settings and circumstances.

Having these career and life experiences in your back pocket will give you a competitive edge in the job market when the time comes that you are ready to put pen to paper.

In his book ‘The Art of Travel’, Alain de Botton expresses how working abroad transcends professional ambitions and provides an avenue for personal growth and self-discovery.

The new friendships you will encounter, the diverse traditions to be engaged with, and the memories gleaned from such an adventure are sure to leave you a more well-rounded individual, and truly shape your identity forever.

They say that travel is the only thing you can buy that makes you richer, and working abroad settles the score financially. It truly is the best of both worlds.

Making your working abroad dreams a reality

While I can’t speak on behalf of all graduates, I can safely say that I, as a 23-year-old male, tend to gravitate towards this much more than I do to starting full-time work, at this point in my life.

So – how can one make this a reality?

There are many answers to this question. You might like to work abroad completely on your own terms, via contacting desired places of employment in a country of your choice, submitting job applications, and figuring it all out on your own.

Or you might rather someone else do the heavy lifting.

One quick Google search will garner hundreds of agencies and companies that recruit new graduates with your skills, and act as the middleman by connecting you with potential employers whilst shouldering the administrative burden of finding accommodation, setting up bank accounts, and organising healthcare and flights.

I, as a pre-service teacher, have been overwhelmed with the number of services that find jobs for teachers and deal with the entire checklist of paperwork for them.

Countries like New Zealand and England seem to be experiencing severe shortages on staff in this industry, so agencies are compelled to work hard to make the transition easy for you.

Research. Research. Research.

I would implore you to research the best locations for opportunities for your profession of choice.

The entire process is very flexible and can be done on your terms. You might like to test the waters with a 6-month casual contract or look for something a little more long-term. Whatever your priority, wherever tickles your fancy, there will be a program for you.

But don’t sit on it as a ‘maybe’ for too long.

Visa processing times necessitate that you begin your application soon to ensure a smooth transition while avoiding any last-minute complications.

So, why not jump online next chance you get, check out a few options, register your interest with a couple of agencies, and have a chinwag with a customer service rep.

Moving Away

I’m all set to move to England in January of next year to start my journey of teaching abroad.

I have a school lined up, a 12-month contract awaiting my signature, and a room in a shared apartment an hour out of London. I am currently plotting my desired locations of travel for my weekends and holidays, and life couldn’t be better. 

Sure, taking the plunge and starting the process can be a daunting task, especially if you hadn’t considered working abroad before, but the backend of 2023 and the dawn of 2024 offers the perfect juncture to assess your aspirations and begin your professional endeavour on international shores.

Make your future self proud by starting the process today, and wherever you go, I hope you travel far enough and wide enough that you meet yourself.

Want to read another student voice?

This is an SSAF funded initiative
Write for Charlie Graphic