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Thread: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

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    Default Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Hello, my name is D. and I've been researching the application and interview process and whatnot for the JET Programme. I believe I have all the desire, flexibility, and capability of performing this position, however I'm concerned about my college transcript. My high school GPA was a fantastic 3.5 and with my mother being an English teacher and I have natural spelling skills, so therefore I would consider myself adept enough and capable of teaching English. However, moving on to college, I took my schooling for granted due to not really knowing what was in the future, partying, laziness, etc. and I curse this fact everyday. My transcript is quite the mess, having a 2.13 GPA and a few Fs, repeated courses, and only 2 English classes to speak of (aside from college english 1 and 2, of which I got Bs and did concurrently in high school) and received a D (it was poetry, 'nough said) and a C. This was due to lack of work rather than lack of intellect and I beat myself up over it constantly. However, I'm a hard worker when it comes to my full-time jobs I've had since and I'm currently taking basic Japanese classes on Saturdays. To sum up, my question is, how much consideration will they give my transcript and how will it affect my application? I also have no teaching experience or volunteer experience though I intend to volunteer asap for Japanese-related events and possibly tutoring. Thank you in advance for your time and repsonses.

    D.
    Last edited by word; March 3rd, 2015 at 16:12. Reason: Good point, uthink. Removed personal info, D.

  2. #2

    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Your high school mark doesn't matter at all.

    GPA is a pretty small factor as far as I'm aware. Your essay and references are what I'm told are the most important in the application.

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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Yeah, I figured high school GPA didn't account for much but I was starting to wonder if perhaps I should provide my high school transcript as well just to show it wasn't because I have a case of the dumbs lol. Thank you for the reply I feel a little bit more encouraged now. Anything else I should consider doing for my resume? Such as any particular volunteer work I should do or other things for my resume I'm forgetting?

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    Fit via vi Virgil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    I'd hire someone dumb who was a hard worker, rather than a smart, self-entitled person who couldn't hack it when they actually needed to study and not go on bingers. I'm not trying to be a dick here, but I'm just saying that if you want to sell yourself to the JET program, you might want to focus on how you've improved since your frat party days. tl;dr "I'm a smart guy, but I'm lazy" sounds really bad, and from what I can tell the JET program does not need any more lazy people.

    I'm a bit bewildered how little GPA means to the JET program when it's so competitive, and they are sending foreigners into a country where "numbers" matter so much.
    Last edited by Virgil; March 3rd, 2015 at 13:46.
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Why am I getting the vibe that this isn't a very friendly community? I'm not self-entitled and I am a hard worker and of course I wouldn't tell the interviewers that I'm "smart but lazy". I was only asking how much my transcript influences the application process. I already stated my regret at my lack of effort in college and if I could go back I'd do it again and actually apply myself. Jesus Christ.

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    Fit via vi Virgil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by dmparker1987 View Post
    Why am I getting the vibe that this isn't a very friendly community? I'm not self-entitled and I am a hard worker and of course I wouldn't tell the interviewers that I'm "smart but lazy". I was only asking how much my transcript influences the application process. I already stated my regret at my lack of effort in college and if I could go back I'd do it again and actually apply myself. Jesus Christ.
    Sorry, I didn't mean to come off as accusing you of all of those things. It's just that's how I interperet that story when people tell it to me. It's not an uncommon thing. As you can tell, you're GPA doesn't matter even when so many people apply to JET.

    So in the nicest way I know how, I'm suggesting you re-evaluate the way you view your college experience, and focus on what you learned from it rather than " I'm smart, but I goofed off".
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    The Sun's Bird God..what? Zolrak 22's Avatar
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Any sort of volunteer work that shows you are a hard working and dedicated individual should work in your favor.

    Thus helping you overshadow those marks during college.

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    Fit via vi Virgil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Also, one of the reasons none of the nice responses have come out is because this question has been answered so many times already. I really am sorry for being a dick, but the people on this site will be blunt with you. I appreciate it, and that's why I hang around. When I re-read my first post it's really poorly worded, and I made lot of mistakes so please excuse my bathroom tirade.
    Quote Originally Posted by Shincantsen View Post
    Frigga please.
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    Gross. I hate people and their sexy times.

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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    As long as you have a degree and qualify as being a native english speaker it'll be good enough for JET. Experiences, tone of your personal statement and the way you conduct yourself in the interview will go further towards you being accepted than your marks at school. They let BeckyJones be an ALT and he can barely string a sentence together.
    Great men of action never mind on occasion being ridiculous; in a sense it is part of their job.

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    Fit via vi Virgil's Avatar
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Ini View Post
    As long as you have a degree and qualify as being a native english speaker it'll be good enough for JET. Experiences, tone of your personal statement and the way you conduct yourself in the interview will go further towards you being accepted than your marks at school. They let BeckyJones be an ALT and he can barely string a sentence together.
    Word.
    Quote Originally Posted by Shincantsen View Post
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    RIP Virgil of 2015

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    Gross. I hate people and their sexy times.

  11. #11
    chill yo coop52's Avatar
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Crappy transcripts can be overcome with volunteer/travel experience and SOP.

    Also, I would refrain from using your real, full name if I were you. Never know how it might come back to haunt you.

  12. #12
    Feckless Manchild Otaku word's Avatar
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by dmparker1987 View Post
    Why am I getting the vibe that this isn't a very friendly community?
    Most folks here are actually pretty friendly, it's just that it's the end of the Japanese school year, everyone is bored out of their minds, and everyone enjoys LOLs at the expense of others a little too much. We keep it real, but we can also be completely obnoxious at times. Please don't take it personally! We've got trolls like any other forum, of course, but we're mostly pretty good people IRL.

    My transcripts were pretty bad. Don't stress. As the others have said, the transcripts are basically just to prove that you have a 4-year degree, which is required for the visa. They may ask you about your transcripts, but treat it as an opportunity to show personal growth and motivation, rather than some kind of mark of shame.
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    I don't think grades generally matter that much in the process, but your situation sounds like one where it would. I wouldn't look at a 2.13 GPA at university as evidence of someone being dumb, but rather someone lacking time management skills, drive, and other qualities necessary to hold a job for an extended period of time. Especially if that person's high school GPA was higher. Presumably you went to school in the states, and high school is a joke there. I walked with a ~5.2 GPA and I didn't do shit for four years. People will make the assumption that at the very least you were a lazy person in college, and most people in hiring don't have generous enough souls to assume that has since been corrected. Beating yourself up over it doesn't help you, nor does it change their preconceptions.

    As an impartial observer, I know that atypical situations abound, but I don't know you, and neither does the JET program. You will need some definite credibility in the "self motivated worker" department, so at the very least I would suggest you gently persuade your reference writers to really emphasize your work ethic. Don't skimp on application baubles. Tutoring English will go over better than learning Japanese on weekends but do as much extra as you feel capable of maintaining. And definitely find a way to highlight your work ethic in your SOP.

    Out of curiosity, what was your major?

  14. #14
    Senior Member hiddenlee22's Avatar
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Virgil View Post
    I'm a bit bewildered how little GPA means to the JET program when it's so competitive, and they are sending foreigners into a country where "numbers" matter so much.
    I was too until I realized how "fair" that might be.

    Schools would have to matter too. You have a 3.9 in DeVry University, wonderful. I have a 2.9 in Princeton.

    GPA should matter a bit more, but shouldn't be taken only at face value.
    Last edited by hiddenlee22; March 3rd, 2015 at 23:11.
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    Senior Member Lorenzo's Avatar
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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    I doubt it matters at all. I was worried about too - I made a similar thread when I was applying - and they gave me an interview even though I had outright failed (and I mean outright) a Japanese course at University. They didn't ask me about it either.

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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Quote Originally Posted by Ini View Post
    As long as you have a degree and qualify as being a native english speaker it'll be good enough for JET. Experiences, tone of your personal statement and the way you conduct yourself in the interview will go further towards you being accepted than your marks at school. They let BeckyJones be an ALT and he can barely string a sentence together.
    ^ this!

    I had three transcripts for my application to prove that I had a bachelor's degree. They were for degrees BS, AAS and BFA. The first one I never finished; the GPA for that one was around ~2.5 with one or two F's. Not sure. But my highest mark was for Japanese at 91.

    The AAS was probably closer to a GPA of 3.8? And I think my BFA GPA was like ... 3.6.

    I'm guessing they took into the consideration that I seemed to have my act together when I finished my BFA. Also I know one of my recommendation letters had spelling mistakes and syntax errors, so I'm guessing my #1 reason for getting an interview is the other recommendation letter and my SOP. At the interview, they didn't even mention the grades thing. Which is corroboration for what Ini said.

    I would say try not to be defensive about bad grades; don't give excuses. Take responsibility for your actions and give reasonable answers when asked about them. Say like, "I wasn't passionate about what I was studying and my grades and motivation plummeted." OR "I wasn't prepared to live away from my parents and I had difficulty adjusting to my school." etc etc. Say what you learnt through the experience. Talk about developing time management skills, stress management skills. There are many ways to make it sound better.
    Last edited by x_stei; March 5th, 2015 at 17:31.

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    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    I came from a school which was mediocre, but my program was absurdly competitive for speech pathology spots in the country. As I'm not a competitive person I just said fuck it and took my 75s all through uni (with a few exceptions both rather low and high). I mean, grades really don't matter all that much, and beyond grad school it didn't really seem like it was worth the effort. I came out with a 2.8 GPA overall in the end (THANKS RELIGION CLASSES!), a 3.3ish program GPA, and they still brought me on JET. Had I gone to a different school that mark would have been VERY different.

    Like xstei said, don't give excuses, just own up to your bad points.
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  18. #18

    Default Re: Aspiring Applicant - Transcript Questions

    Transcript grades don't really matter. I received an F and D on two different Japanese courses and I still made it to alternate. All they care about is that you graduated and have the degree.

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