International education is a relatively new degree field that allows students to pursue knowledge about how educational endeavors affect the economy and societies globally. International education students are often employed in outreach capacities or in teaching positions that involve students from more than one country or culture.
What Do International Educators Do?
International education graduates may find jobs in:
• International development for large companies that do business overseas
• Organizations that offer human services or education in foreign countries
• Leadership in international education associations
• Community international outreach programs to local populations
• Government jobs involving education in foreign countries
• English as a Second Language programs
International education graduate programs may also be suitable for those in other fields such as healthcare who want to work with international populations in training and education.
What Types of Degrees Do International Educators Have?
International education is usually a master’s degree or M.Ed. In most cases, a student would have already graduated with an undergraduate degree and pursued teaching certification prior to taking a job in international education. The Master’s in International Education allows seasoned teachers as well as those from other fields to refine the skills necessary to transfer knowledge to other groups and populations.
While there is no specific certification for international educators, most employers want to see at least a teaching certificate or certification in a former field such as healthcare or social work.
How Much Do International Educators Earn?
It is impossible to say exactly what an international educator will earn because the salaries for these occupations are very job-specific. However, the Bureau of Labor Statistics notes that the median salary for postsecondary educators is $64,310.
However, there may be other fringe benefits to being employed as an international educator. The travel and living expenses of many international educators are paid for by the government or company for whom these teachers work. In that case, the salary earned could be much less but might still equate to a better standard of living than a higher salary paid to a teacher who lives in the United States.
What Are the Advantages and Disadvantages to a Career In International Education?
If you are the type of person who loves to travel and even live in foreign places, international education is one way to see the world and get paid to travel. Furthermore, many international educators find deep satisfaction in helping the peoples of the world who might not have access to information. These teachers sometimes stay for years with a specific group of people, developing personal relationships with the community and ultimately settling down in those areas.
On the other hand, the travel can be problematic for a young person who wants to start a family or have strong ties at home. International teachers are often gone for an entire school year. This means that the international teacher, as opposed to the stateside teacher, may not see family and friends on a regular basis. Some of the areas to which international teachers travel can also be considered very dangerous; international teachers have sometimes been placed in physical danger from political situations in other countries.
If you are a person who has a strong passion for helping others throughout the world, a desire to travel, and few strong ties to your home community, international teaching could be the perfect career for you. This is a rewarding field that allows you to help others around the globe and use your skills to assist people who genuinely need and appreciate your help.