links i find vital

where it all started for me! (btw it starts off with like a min of music)
a seoul radio station interview about bssk
a bunch of interviews with black expats in soko
find family on facebook: Brothas&Sistas of South Korea

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

CDI (Chung Dahm Institute)

a recruiter called me the other night asking if i'd like to interview with CDI (Chung Dahm Institute). i know i'd made up my mind before to just stick with jobbusan, but this woman was so nice over the phone. if you do a google image search for "cdi" you dont get anything related to the school, so instead here's a cute poster for some korean movie called "Please Teach Me English."

What I learned about CDI on

 the students are grouped by english ability/comprehension as well as by age. Issues at private hogwans- mom insisting her child be put in level x, not getting paid on time, not getting paid in full, having your schedule changed unannounced- are not commonplace there as they are at most other hogwons. complaints that i have tried to read like positives:

  • a full week of training, but with no pay (well, that happens sometimes here in the states. at least you'll get training instead of a book and instructions of "go teach" as happens in many other schools. and it's not a surprise, they tell you youre not getting paid for it).

  • Solid scheduled of 4pm-10pm, sometimes not M-F, likely working a weekend day (again, at least it's not a surprise. they tell you you'll might have to work weekends. and schedules change every 3 months, at least, so if one term sucks, hope for good for the following term).

  • you dont get all national holidays off, and only 7 non paid vacation days off a year (well, yeah. others insist, and deserve, the usual full 2-8 weeks korean vacation time).

  • airfare is not paid for you upfront, you get half when you arrive, and the other half upon completion of the contract (i think that's fair, tho other jobs are easily had where your ticket is paid ahead for you).

  • you have to write an essay when you apply (many complain about this, and understandably so b/c many jobs are to be had without this requirement, but it's only a standard 5 paragraph and no big chore).

  • classes are three hours long (but you get a breakdown of how to use those three hours. many complain there's no freedom to teach what you want, but for some, this translates into "this is too much actual work/teaching.")
seems like everything is straightforward. yes, you'll work weekends. yes, sometimes you'll have to go to meetings. but they tell you about it, it's not tricky. i do understand that there is a difference between the cdi branch and the cdi franchise, also, some differences between opting to be paid hourly or flat monthly salary. but my word is not bond. please check out other forums and do a search for cdi.


Seoul Sista said...

I have been here in Seoul for nearly 2 years and have only worked for CDI. I renewed my contract; I love it so much. I work for a third-leg of CDI called a "Branchise." It basically houses the pros and cons of both a Branch and a Franchise.

But let me first tell you what I love:

- I am always paid on time.

- Everything is usually, if not always, organized.

- Our school/business takes care of all and any outside needs (house bills, medical care, cell phone bill usage, and etc.) This may only apply to our location.

- With all CDI's, there is a competent staff of Korean Desk Teachers - with University Degrees - to assist with everything.

- It operates like a corporation, so there is a hefty chain of command, should you need it.

- The product is growing daily and they exist in Canada, are expanding to China, and the R&D - Research and Development - Department is housed in New York.

- The salaries typically start at 2.8 million won per month. But many are over 3 million. We receive bonuses often. And we receive a raise when renewing the contract.

- And about the curriculum, it is a strict paradigm. But depending on your location, you bring your personality and outside materials to teach as you choose, in conjunction with the material. My location allows for this openness.

P.S. I, too, am a Sista - Seoul Sista!

Feel free to e-mail me, if you'd like more insight into CDI -- which I didn't provide here.

Timothy said...

hey. I enjoyed reading your blog. I am sorry if you have already mentioned this in a previous blog BUT! what is the difference between a CDI Branch and a CDI Franchsise? I am just wondering.
I am excited because I am going to be working at a CDI Branch and think it is going to be a great opportunity.