A lot of people hoped I would write a book that describes, in step-by-step fashion, exactly how to locate and plan a short-term overseas posting–essentially, “Working Vacations for Dummies.” However, this is not a realistic possibility since each specialization will have its own unique assortment of foundations, grants, agencies, and programs–what may work well for a surgeon might be meaningless to a ballet dancer The real trick to finding a working vacation is not so much knowing exactly where to look but knowing exactly how to respond when that exciting travel/work opportunity appears out of the blue.
For example, just last week I received the following email from a colleague at Gustavus Adolphus, a liberal arts college in nearby St. Peter, Minnesota:
Seeking Software Engineering Lecturers in Vietnam
XXX University is seeking software engineering lecturers at its campuses in Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh city. This is a good opportunity for anyone looking to experience Vietnamese culture and participate in the development of one of the fastest growing economies in the world. Positions are available both for full-time staff or visiting lecturers working either part-time or for one or more semesters.
What a superb opportunity–a paid, one semester (4-6 month) working vacation in Hanoi, Vietnam, one of the most charming cities in all of SE Asia. The unexpected appearance of this type of announcement is not all that rare; I receive them a few times a year. What is rare, however, is the motivation to go after it–the desire to add something new and exciting to your life. I hope that my book will give you both that level of enthusiasm and the information needed to pull it off.