References v. Letters of Recommendation

I often get asked about references (who to ask and how to set them up) and also about letters of recommendation (who to ask and what’s the difference anyway?). This is a copy of a document my colleague put together that I’ve changed slightly to fit the teaching profession. It’s kinda long, but full of good information. Hope this helps!

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What Matters Most in Interviewing

I came across this infographic that accurately highlights the importance of non-verbals during an interview. We forget sometimes that yes, having industry knowledge is important (85%!), but also being sincerely excited about working for the school or organization and being able to carry on a conversation with the interviewers is also VERY important. Employers are looking for a good “fit” and they can’t always determine that just from your answers to their interview answers…be kind, be personable, and most importantly, be you!

Interviewing

Need help with the interview process? Former teaching interns have access to their College Career Consultant for up to 2 years after finishing the program. To make an appointment, log in to Handshake. Appointments can be made in person, over the phone, or via Skype. Indicate your medium preference in the advising notes.

Illinois Certification

Aside from Michigan, the state of Illinois is the top state for Spartan Teachers to call home after finishing the TPP. Any time you’re thinking of teaching in another state you will need to follow the steps necessary for transferring your teaching license (in this case you’re transferring a Michigan license to an Illinois license, even if you’re a Chicago intern). The best place to find the most up-to-date information on how to do this is by going to the Board of Education web site for that state. They can be hard to navigate, but will have the most accurate information.

For now, I want to share information from both our College of Education web site AND from a former Chicago intern, Cheryl G., on paths for obtaining a state of Illinois teaching licence. Thank you Cheryl for your information and expertise! Note: her strategy is to first sub! A great foot-in-the-door technique for any young teacher. Please see her strategy here:

everything-you-need-to-know-about-licensure-in-illinois

The College of Education website shares a sightly different route, please go to http://www.educ.msu.edu/certification/certification-update/illinois.asp for those details and instructions.

For information on teaching in other states, we suggest using the site certificationmap.com.

Teaching Virtually

It’s true, not every teacher wants to teach in a traditional classroom. Michigan Virtual School (MVS) offers teaching positions for certified teachers that allows the flexibility of living anywhere while providing new and exciting challenges that wouldn’t be experienced in any other type of teaching experience. The good news is, MVS is looking for 26 new iEducators this May!

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Using Handshake Like a Pro

Now is a good time to start thinking about where you want to teach at the end of your program and how to find these opportunities. I’d recommend that you start this search by using Handshake to help you identify possible opportunities or potential school districts of interest. Although Handshake is just one job search resource, if they’re posting on Handshake they REALLY want to hire an MSU teacher.

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Teaching Opportunities Plentiful in China

Many Spartan Teachers are interested in teaching overseas. Although there are teaching opportunities all over the world, there is an abundance teaching positions in China due to the number of schools popping up all over the country. Many of which are looking specifically for English-speaking teachers.

For example, Huamei International Investment Group (http://www.huameigroup.com.cn/) is a multi-billion dollar company in China. Huamei International School (http://en.hm163.com/) is one of the largest private school in China, with multiple K-12 private schools. Located in Tianjing and Guangzhou, it has over 7,500 students enrolled and has a high demand for teachers.

Huamei International hosts an array of job opportunities for American teachers, who can teach courses – in English. As a perk, they provide a free apartment, free lunch, free flight to China, and importantly a competitive salary.

For information email: kibbin@vip.qq.com

Looking Out of State?

In addition to checking individual district web sites in your state of choice, also consider checking out free recruiting agencies to help you find additional opportunities across various schools and geographic regions.

For example, Southern Teachers recruits qualified teachers for its open positions. Complete the online application to be considered for teaching jobs that match your qualifications.

About Southern Teachers:

The agency has helped private/independent K-12 schools find qualified teachers since 1902. Today it works with over 600 schools from Maryland to Miami and west to Texas.

According to ST, independent schools can be a great incubator for young teachers to develop their skills and maximize the potential of their students. They have small classes full of students preparing for college and a focus on learning and innovation – not on test taking. You can read more about ST here.

ST