View Full Version : Aspiring Australian JETs 2017

December 3rd, 2016, 19:51
Hi everyone!

I've come across this forum earlier this week and found that the previous aspiring Aussies threads to be interesting and useful. Useful in the sense that it provides the present and future aspirers a timeline of the application process and interview results at each respective location. Also interesting in the sense that you can sometimes kind of pick out that someone might not get accepted just from their posts (haha maybe I will fall under this category, who knows). But seeing that this forum is lacking the 2017 batch, I decided to create this thread.

I'm a 29 year old Australian born Asian from Sydney. I developed an interest in Japan after seeing Evangelion air on SBS when I was 12. I eventually took up beginners Japanese for my HSC and also participated in a 2-week school exchange in Nagoya. Becoming quite close to my host family, I visited them almost once a year, for a few years. I even attended my host brother's wedding 2 years ago. Around the time I started regularly visiting Japan, I stumbled upon the Gaijinsmash blog and decided that the JET programme was definitely something that I would enjoy doing. I buckled down and did my prerequisite courses to get into uni, eventually finishing uni with a bachelor of arts in Japanese and Korean studies. Now armed with an overpriced yet flashy piece of paper, I've finally sent my first application for the JET program a few weeks ago. After going to uni, my motivation isn't just my own selfish wish to live in Japan, but also to help kids learn English. Never being interested in Korean culture at all at first, I bombed so hard in the first couple units of Korean that I was always behind in class. I had lost all confidence to even do self-study cause I just couldn't get results. I hope to become a great teacher that explains things easily so that English is enjoyable and fun to learn, without the anxiety and frustrations that I experienced. My hobbies include dance (90's hip hop, breakdance, house, etc but haven't done so since starting uni), listening to The Weeknd way too much, sometimes computer games, and embarrassing to say sometimes Korean dramas, variety TV, and movies (although Korean movies can be pretty good eg The Chaser, Oldboy, The Yellow Sea). Haha too much?

So how about all you other aspiring Aussies aiming for the 2017's intake?

December 4th, 2016, 18:43
Just wondering if there's anyone who is able to answer something for me. I've indicated that I'm aiming for the early departures, but in my sent application I hadn't included my National Police Check (nor the indication that I had already applied for it) and Certificate of Health. So how do I go about sending them these documents? Do I wait until I see if I get accepted for the interview and then send them to the embassy? Do I hand it to them at the interview? Should I contact the embassy directly for these instructions?

December 7th, 2016, 08:01
Best bet is to contact the consulate/embassy you applied through. It would make sense to get them in a quickly as possible, although I don't know how the consulates in Australia handle things.

December 7th, 2016, 08:32
Thank you for your reply. The embassy has instructed me to wait until I get the confirmation of passing onto the interview stage, which should be sometime before Christmas, and to send it directly to my interview location (consulate rather than embassy).

Zolrak 22
December 11th, 2016, 12:07
I'm sure that's not the case, but your post makes it sound like the only reason you got a bachelor's was for the JET Program. Might want to rephrase that when it's time for the interview .

December 11th, 2016, 16:08
Well technically it's true. I only went to university so I could meet the minimum requirement to teach/work in Japan, and it's for that very reason that motivated and kept me going until I graduated. Of course the means to an end was not primarily the JET program, I'd like to eventually teach English on my own not as an ALT after. I wouldn't have thought it would be seen as something negative. Would you mind elaborating?

December 11th, 2016, 19:36
You don't see why spending 4 years and tens of thousands of dollaridoos for the sole purpose of becoming a human CD player in a country you've no idea if you'll actually enjoy living in is negative?

December 11th, 2016, 20:05
Did I not say I wanted to move on from being an ALT eventually and hopefully become the English teacher in a school? I've been to Japan 8 times already so I'm quite familiar with the lifestyle. If the time comes that I'm no longer able to enjoy Japan then I'll figure it out then.

December 11th, 2016, 21:29
Also interesting in the sense that you can sometimes kind of pick out that someone might not get accepted just from their posts (haha maybe I will fall under this category)

You don't say!

December 11th, 2016, 22:37
For what reason are you implying that I won't get accepted? That's not very nice. Zolrak was kind enough to provide me with advice on a certain detail which might not have been taken in the right context and I was open to hear more advice if he was willing. Your buddy took it further out of context and you come here to bash me on something I'm passionate about without a reason. Have you seen how jet-programme.com describes this forum?

And lastly, this JET Programme forum...
I Think I'm Lost - Used to be a useful and somewhat friendly site but seems over the years to have sunk into an infantile version of BD, but without most of the humour. Mostly trafficked by current JETs - a number with too much time on their hands. The regular trashing by some ITIL posters of other JET blogs and websites is rather sad. Claims to have been recently "re-booted" (as of June 2014) with new moderators. One will be able to find some useful information at least (in the new JET's section).

I hope you don't give me more reasons to think this is an accurate description. For the most part, I feel like people come here and get the information they're looking for then disappear cause they couldn't care less about keeping in contact with the members here. It's mostly a small number of posters that regularly come to put their 2 cents of dry wit, mostly being irrelevant to the topic. Instead of doing that, why not be welcoming and provide constructive criticism? This is the only forum where you're able to talk to other people applying and those with experience. If you're not willing to do that then it's probably best that you retire into The Lounge where your posts mean anything at all.

December 11th, 2016, 22:49
Did I not say I wanted to move on from being an ALT eventually and hopefully become the English teacher in a school? I've been to Japan 8 times already so I'm quite familiar with the lifestyle. If the time comes that I'm no longer able to enjoy Japan then I'll figure it out then.
I've been to France more than a dozen times on holiday, doesn't mean I know the first thing about living and working there.

If you actually want to be an English teacher then get qualified as a teacher back home, get some experience to show you actually like teaching and then get an international school position in Japan for twice the salary and a thousand times the respect of alt work. Saying you want to help students improve their English is only relevant to 20% of JET positions at best. There's a very high chance you'll be placed in a school where there isn't even a single student who cares about English, that you'll be placed at a school who doesn't allow you any input, that you'll be stuck playing games with ES babies or be split amongst so many different schools you only see the same class 4 times a year. What you are saying you intend to do isn't actually in line with the function of the JET programme. On the other hand, if your plan is exactly as you describe then you aren't taking the optimal steps to achieve it. Basing your degree on getting into JET sounds stupid because it is stupid. JET is designed to be a couple of years jaunt that sends foreigners back to their country to tell everyone how great it is. It is not meant to bring serious English teachers to Japan.

Arguing with people on this forum doesn't make a difference btw, we're not the ones you have to convince. But if a bunch of Internet strangers all think your statement sounds sketchy then you'd probably do best to rethink your phrasing prior to the application.

December 11th, 2016, 23:25
Thanks, I'll put everything that you said into consideration. It's probably true that the JET program on the whole is all about culture exchange, not so much English teaching. But you'll have to agree that a number of people use it just to get their foot in the door that is Japan. Doesn't matter if it's JET or Interac etc, once you get the visa you have the choice to go work in other places as long as it's valid, or so I've read. So what if my motive may be a little naive, it's something that I want to do and if I don't, I'll regret not even trying. I could very well sit in class all day with only one purpose but to work a CD player. Unless I let myself go braindead by doing so, I could use this opportunity to observe and learn ways to teach, maybe ask for more responsibilities in class later, and also study at home as long as I'm motivated. It might be a long road towards my goal and it revolves around how determined I am to make it happen. What lies ahead of my first year or second etc relies on what I make of it. So yes, I'll rethink my phrasing if I get a chance to interview. Not here to argue unless someone is rude to me without any reason.

December 12th, 2016, 06:29
That the JET programme doesn't like a site where they can't control the message about JET is hardly surprising. Yes, some users' sense of humor can rub people the wrong way. But it's not like anyone is telling you bullshit.

Getting a degree for the purpose of going on JET was... Well, I'll be kind and call it naive. English education here sucks and if your passion is english education you would be better off teaching elsewhere. If your passion is Japan, which sounds like is more the case, learning a skill that will allow you to get a good job here- something that is not english teaching- is the way to go.

But oh well. If I could go back in time I would absolutely change what I studied at university. And I had pretty stupid reasons for going to college as well. I don't think that's so uncommon. People often mess up what they do for the first time. I think you'd be better off just laughing about it when people call you out for it though. You're going to make a lot of mistakes in Japan. If you get angry every time someone points it out to you, you're going to have a rough time of it.

All that being said, your plan is not impossible. I just think anyone with knowledge of the english education situation here would ask, "Why would you want that?"

December 12th, 2016, 09:25
Plus with no qualifications other than a Bachelor's, even if you do spend 5 years on jet and decide you love teaching English here and want to do it forever, you're probably going to be stuck doing Eikaiwa, getting less pay than JET while working in awful conditions. When I tell you to get qualified if you really want to teach long term here, I'm not looking down on you. I'd give myself the same advice 5 years ago.

Also since when did aussies get this touchy?

December 12th, 2016, 14:54
I was kind of expecting a little mockery or some kind of sarcastic comment. I liked Jiggit's Simpsons reference and I didn't have the intention to come across as snappy. But I feel like I have to defend myself when mrcharisma makes such a snide comment that I'm not going to get accepted without a reason in the aspiring section of this forum, I don't think that's acceptable. What happened to the sprawling threads for American, Canadian, UK, Australia, etc, where they had 10-20+ unique new applicants joining this forum each year and contributing to the conversation. But now look at happened in the 2017 Hopeful thread and you'll see that most of the new members are being judged or mocked in some way. There's something wrong with the attitude of some members here and it's killing the desire for people to join and stay, probably just for the simple reason of boredom. Call me touchy if you want but I'm sure there are some people who would agree, unfortunately they did the smart thing and stayed as guests.

Any information about getting qualified would be appreciated. If the English education situation is as bad as you say, let me experience it for myself and ask me if I'm still motivated to become a good English teacher. I think it's an admirable goal to aim towards, but it's not something that will completely devastate my life if I'm not able to achieve it.

December 12th, 2016, 15:41
ITIL survived for a long time despite snarky members. I'm sure members with that attitude have scared away members before. But ITIL has always been that way to a certain extent, and here it is, the last man standing among JET forums. The decline in use since its heyday is from other factors- mostly the popularity of powerhouse social sites like reddit and facebook.
Now, maybe in this new online environment, users need to change their MO because new blood is needed. It's possible. But really I think the ability of the users to speak as they like is the main attraction to ITIL, so I suspect more policing would scare away as many as it attracted.

The attitude in your last paragraph is baffling to me if I'm understanding you right. Are you saying you want to come be an english teacher in japan without hearing opinions about the state of english education in japan? Man, I wish I'd heard more about the state of english education in Japan before I'd come over. I don't see how learning more about a situation you're about to walk into is a bad thing.

As for what qualifications are useful- a teaching license in your home country would open some doors. The CELTA you got is not useless, but if you get accepted on JET the experience you get will be more useful. Once in Japan, network. I also know some people who got hired as a regular teacher at private schools. They all had at least two of these three things: 5 plus years of experience, fluent Japanese, japanese teaching license.

December 12th, 2016, 20:16
For what reason are you implying that I won't get accepted? That's not very nice.

Apologies for the poor bedside manner but as the troops have already told you, your intro brought up a few major red flags that would be unlikely to do you many favours at interview. They've already been covered by everyone else so there's no need to go over them again.

I'll re-iterate Jiggit's advice about getting a teaching qualification first as it makes building a career in Japan post-Jet far more of a realistic prospect.

December 16th, 2016, 10:56
Hopefully with the UK applicants receiving their results before Christmas we might get ours soon! Otherwise January will come around quickly and let the letterbox standby begin!

December 31st, 2016, 17:25
I got my results in the mail on the 28th, if it helps? I'm in QLD.

January 1st, 2017, 23:33
Quick Lift the Dingo?

January 30th, 2017, 11:38
I happened to stumble across this thread while doing some extra last-minute preparation for the upcoming Sydney interviews. Seeing as this seems to be the only active online community (other than the unofficial Facebook page), I decided to put it out there that Sydney results were released at beginning of January (sorry those who didn't make it) and wish everyone all the best in preparing for their last hurdle, the interview.

For those frantically trying to find advice for the interview, there's really only the same thing said time and time again online - look good, feel good, smile, and answer honestly. These are basic interview skills. They'll give you the easy marks. The rest is pretty much luck - what questions you will get and how you will respond. What I've been doing is simply re-reading over everything in my applications, reflecting on why I wrote that sentence and what a practical application would look like on JET, and knowing exactly what you want to say for each area of your application and Statement of Purpose. I'm not an aspiring teacher and my career prospects are in an entirely different industry, but I happen to be applying for JET because I want to collaborate with the Japanese counter-part in my industry and need to really understand how Japanese society reacts to certain Western world norms/devices we inherently place into all our products/businesses. This puts me at a disadvantage because it means I don't have any official teaching qualifications, but on the contrary it means I really have it grounded in for how I will respond to most questions the interview panel could throw at me. So for those who don't come from a teaching background of qualifications, think about how you can turn this disadvantage into a positive. I mean, that's what interviews are all about, how you can turn a bad situation into a good one. Sounds like JET work (teaching)!

Anyways, well for anyone in the Sydney interviews, see you there. If you happen to hear someone introduce themselves as Chris, maybe that's me. I'd love to chat in the lobby because that'll make me forget about the nervousness of an interview haha

March 9th, 2017, 20:37
Hey fellow Strayan's ^_^
I'm just wondering if anyone has heard back from their respective consulates for April arrivals? The waiting game is killing me ay!

March 29th, 2017, 17:09
Sydney candidates, along with some other countries' candidates, were informed of their results yesterday for July arrivals. I will assume that you, and other April arrival candidates, would've heard back regarding early departure a week or two ago.
I've been shortlisted and am dying to hear the results for placement. This really surprised me because I didn't expect to make it through after flopping an interview question entirely. Welp, here I am now dropping out of graduate program applications left, right and center. Hopefully the rest of you made it through too!
See you lucky buggers at the orientation(s) :)

March 30th, 2017, 09:34
Congrats, or, depending on your future placement, condolences.

March 30th, 2017, 09:36

March 30th, 2017, 14:41
Well, I guess even the worst placement beats the regret of not going on JET. Now I just hope I don't get dragged down by the regret of rejecting offers for my non-teaching career.
Guess I'll make the most of my time on JET and try to apply for jobs when my contract is coming to an end (or at the 2nd year). Although Japanese companies seem to mostly give offers to graduating uni students...not graduates... also I'm slightly more proficient at Japanese than N3, but haven't gotten around to attempting N2 JLPT which most companies consider business-level. GG

March 30th, 2017, 15:03
Well, I guess even the worst placement beats the regret of not going on JET.

Oh god, nope. I hope you aren't one of the unlucky few who find that out the hard way.

March 30th, 2017, 16:47
Oh god, nope. I hope you aren't one of the unlucky few who find that out the hard way.

Ya, there have been some incredibly toxic reports in recent years thanks to BoEs and their inept policies. There are definitely times when not coming on JET is better than the alternative

March 31st, 2017, 19:06
Shortlisted. Brisbane found out today. (y)