Work Abroad

As with any job search, consider that it can take time, energy, and perseverance to research and find international work. Three key considerations to keep in mind as you begin your search, as outlined by Amanda Wilson, Career Advisor at the UI Pomerantz Career Center, include:

  • Know the requirements for visa and work permits.  These requirements differ from country to country, and obtaining a visa or work permit can be a lengthy process.  Electronic Embassy and Overseas Jobs have links for foreign embassies’ websites, where a country’s visa and work permit requirements are usually listed.
  • Know how the job search differs abroad.  Job search etiquette and the format of a resume, a CV, or an interview differ depending on the country and region.  See Going Global or Quintessential Careers Global Career Resources for helpful articles on these topics.
  • Know where to find opportunities.  Ask friends, family, colleagues, past employers… use your network of resources. The list of international job search websites included here is not comprehensive, but will give you a good start.   

figurine jumps over book

New York Times article "The World is Their Workplace" by Cecelia Capuzzi Simon

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Seven Simple Steps to Finding a Job Abroad by Alexandra Talty

Work Abroad Resource List

All Cruise Jobs: Search engine and reviews for cruise ship employment.

GoAbroad.com: Search engine for jobs worldwide.

Going Global:  Provides global career information and resources  *UI campus users can create a free account 

Go Overseas Au Pair: Search engine and reviews for au pair positions worldwide.

HireaHawkFind jobs around the world posted just for Hawkeyes!

Idealist:  Seach engine for jobs worldwide.

Monster (International): Search engine for jobs worldwide

WorkAway:  Work in exchange for food and accommodations worldwide. 

Teach Abroad Resource List

TESOL Certification:

Some teaching abroad positions require or recommend a TESOL certification. Even if your program doesn’t require one, it is a good idea to gain experience working with non-English speakers. One great way to gain this experience is through the Campus Conversation Partner Program. TESOL certification can be earned in person or online, many community colleges offer courses online and on campus.  

UI student stands among African childrenCIEE Teach English Abroad: CIEE offers teaching positions with programs in Chile, China, Dominican Republic, South Korea, Spain, and Thailand.

Cultural Ambassadors; North American Language and Culture Assistants in Spain (Spanish Government): English teaching assistantships throughout Spain.

Dave’s ESL Café: Search engine for teaching positions worldwide.

Foreign Language Assistants in France (French Government): English teaching assistantships throughout France.

Fulbright English Teaching Assistantship: Offers a classroom placement to help teach English while serving as a cultural ambassador for U.S. culture. UI offers Fulbright application assistance; please contact Karen Wachsmuth at karen-wachsmuth@uiowa.edu or by calling 319.335.1436.

The Japan Exchange and Teaching Programme (JET):  Assist with international exchange and language education in local governments and schools throughout Japan.

National Volunteer Center (Chilean Government): Teach English in independent classes under the supervision of a Chilean head teacher in public schools.

SIT TESOL Certification4 week intensive 130-hour certification course in TESOL offered in various locations around the world from North Hampton, MA to Bangkok, Quito, Brisbane and beyond. 

Teach and Learn in Korea (TaLK):  Teach English to elementry students after school. Salaried position, flight and accomodations paid. 

United States Government/Non-profit Work Abroad

Ambassador Ronald K. McMullen, a Visiting Associate Professor at the University of Iowa, has over 30 years of diplomatic experience and has lived, worked, or traveled in 91 countires. He has provided the following handouts to help students interested in working for the United States Government or Non-profits abroad. 

To read more about Ambassador McMullen's experiences, please see UI Visiting Profesor, Former U.S. Ambassador Reflect on Time Away and Ambassador Comes Home.

Graduate School Abroad

Going to graduate school and living abroad are both exceptionally transformative experiences. There are many benefits of pursuing a graduate degree abroad as well as challenges, but remember the focus should be on the merits of the specific degree rather than the excitement of going abroad. When you can combine the two experiences in a way that matches your career, educational, and life goals, you have found a good balance.

Benefits for a U.S. National in Getting a Graduate Degree Abroad

Go Abroad: search engine for graduate opportunities abroad

Go Overseas: Pros and Cons of Earning a Graduate Degree Abroad

Instituto Franklin Teach and Learn in Spain Study Program: 1 year Masters program in education or teaching with an internship as a language assistant in Madrid