As an undergraduate student emerging from an Arts Degree in NUI Galway, I was left wondering what my next step was. I pursued a Masters in Dublin Institute of Technology however, upon completion of my Masters; I still wasn’t satisfied with my chosen career path and decided I wanted to look into the field of teaching. Through a friend I heard of the company SABIS who recruited young people to teach in the Middle East amongst other regions. I decided that before I enrolled myself in another college course, I would try out a year of teaching to see whether I would like to pursue a career in that industry. Two years on, I can honestly say that my decision to teach with SABIS in the Middle East has been one of the best decisions of my life.
Teaching with SABIS has allowed me as a person who had no experience in the field of teaching to immerse myself in the teaching profession in order to get a well-rounded understanding of this profession and the hard work that comes with it. Furthermore, I enjoyed my experience so much that I extended my contract with SABIS for a third year. I have gained an invaluable experience teaching young international students of various ethnicities and cultures as well as immersing myself into the roles and responsibilities taken on by teachers. These past two years have opened my eyes to the fact that teaching is the career I want to pursue. Furthermore, I have just been accepted to complete an online Post Graduate Course in Education while I complete my third year teaching with SABIS. This in turn will allow me to become a fully qualified teacher globally.
In terms of living in the United Arab Emirates, it certainly has an abundance of perks! The SABIS team and their associated administration put in every effort to ensure you get settled into your new surroundings as soon as possible. Yes, it takes a couple of months to adjust to the surreal heat and a new culture and the associated laws that go with it but as long as there is respect for the country and the culture that inevitably comes with it, life is easy. Personally, so far, I have lived a very normal unrestricted life whilst still complying with was is expected of you. You won’t be short of things to do in the United Arab Emirates with an abundance of beaches, shopping malls, entertainment facilities, bars and even nightclubs at your fingertips. There is always something to do at the weekends and to be honest, with a lifestyle like this the year is over in a flash. Unlike so many countries, we are extremely lucky to have a very low tax rate imposed on our salaries and so most of our hard earned money goes straight into our pockets. I am in full acknowledgement that it would not be financially possible to do all I am doing if it wasn’t for benefits like this.
For those who want to travel, the holidays you get as a teacher and the fact that the Middle East is central to many of the countries that we aspire to some day visit, have allowed me to explore many countries that before seemed to be out of reach. Last but definitely not least, living in the United Arab Emirates has not only provided me with a fantastic platform to meet and work with so many new and wonderful people , but it has also allowed me to gain a huge understanding of different religions and cultures. Due to the huge multinational make-up in SABIS, I have had the chance to engage with people from different backgrounds and cultures on a daily basis.
To anyone reading this who has experienced doubts about venturing over to the Middle East, I cannot recommend it enough. I strongly encourage you to take the leap and go. It is an experience you won’t forget.