Increase Your Chance of Getting Hired
As you set off on your quest to find your ideal teaching job, you’ll want to ensure you stand out as a strong candidate. To do this, consider availing of a few suggestions listed below to increase your marketability. Before we get started, let’s define “marketability”:
The following recommendations may help you catch the eye of hiring school districts.
Location: Keep an Open Mind
Depending on where you live, it’s very likely you’ll need to factor in commute time to your job search. Open a map application on your web browser or smartphone and calculate how long it will take to travel to and from your potential place of work. Make sure to adjust the leaving time, as traveling during peak hours may add time to your commute. While it’s important to determine a reasonable commute time, make sure not to limit your search area drastically. If your search radius is too narrow, you will limit your job options. If you find this to be the case, consider expanding your search.
While you may have your heart set on working at a specific school, keep in mind the main objective – especially during the first couple of years – is to gain experience! The more flexible you are regarding location, the more options you will have. Rural districts generally tend to have more open positions and a smaller applicant pool. As you gain experience, you can always continue to apply for more competitive positions!
Be Competitive: Pursue High-Need Areas
Becoming a teacher in a high-need area will give you a competitive edge! School districts are always seeking teachers who are certified in the subject areas most needed in their school. For more information regarding high-need areas in Michigan, read this blog post.
Remember that you may add multiple endorsement areas. Your goal may be to teach Elementary Education, which isn’t on the high-need area list. You should absolutely follow your preferred area, but to make yourself more marketable, consider adding an additional endorsement area. This will provide the hiring district with flexibility on campus and open more job opportunities to you! Ask our Program Advisors about which additional endorsement areas may be most beneficial to your specific skills and interests.
Go Above and Beyond: Extracurriculars
Schools are looking for educators who are willing to help support the students, both in and outside the classroom. If you are open to organizing or leading an extracurricular team or club, you are significantly more marketable as a teacher! A science teacher who leads the seventh-grade cheerleading squad will be offered the job before the science teacher who teaches science. This is also great experience to add to your growing teacher portfolio!
Gain Experience: Volunteer & Connect
Classroom experience of any kind will help boost your marketability. Consider volunteering at various school events, or even substitute teaching. This is a fantastic way to gain experience and begin networking. As you attend events, make sure to connect with others. Most people are generally happy to offer advice, but you must make a genuine effort to connect with them. Always keep in touch – you never know when a previous contact may prove beneficial in the future!