What is EPIK? It stands for English Program in Korea. Erin and Megan found out about EPIK through some friends who work at a non-profit (Center for Cultural Interchange – CCI) in Chicago that coordinates both visitors from abroad who want to work and study, and Americans trying to work/study overseas (Erin and Megan). EPIK is one of the programs they recruit for.
EPIK is a government run program that brings native English speakers from various countries (US, Canada, UK, etc) to Korea and places them in public schools (elementary, middle and high school). There’s a huge government initiative to have a ‘native teacher’ in each school in Korea, and native speakers can seriously reap the benefits.
EPIK requires no previous teacher training or experience, only a bachelor’s degree. (Erin and Megan both came here without having ever taught a class). The pay and benefits so far seem to be awesome, especially considering the lax requirements, and include a more than reasonable salary, paid vacation, and reimbursement for flights to and from Korea.
The application process is a bit cumbersome (more on that later). Orientation is far more organized. And life here, well, it’s different for everyone…so read on!