Despite the warnings of plummeting jobs and rising debt, young workers are still giving into their wanderlust and travelling to parts unknown. Keep reading to see how these three travellers made the most of their abroad experiences.
Affirm You’re On The Right Path
Sometimes it can be worrying to travel to a new location without fully knowing how you’ll earn enough money to support yourself. However, you can often find job postings on travel blogs, or on the study and work abroad websites. These jobs allow young workers to travel and gain experience, like Holly Popadyn, a 24-year-old Personal Support Worker from Ontario. She discovered new opportunities in her field while on a working holiday in Australia.
While she is back home in Ontario, Holly is still riding the high of her decision to work abroad and urges others to follow in her footsteps. “The best advice I can give is to just do it! Take the chance, you won’t regret it!”
Discover a New Passion
LeRoy Thorssen, a 22-year-old from Calgary, knew from an early age that he wanted to travel the world, noting his father as his inspiration. “He was the one who inspired me to work and travel, experience other cultures, and have an open mind to different ways of life around the world. ”
LeRoy moved to the United Kingdom when he was 19 through a work placement company and lived in a small hotel on the seaside town of Paignton. He admits it was not luxurious work but it was there that he made lasting friendships and memories. “The only real upside to my job were my amazing coworkers,” says LeRoy. “We became a tight-knit family.”
LeRoy eventually made his way to London where he found work as a bartender. “By that point, I was a cocktail nerd, and I wanted to pursue that.” With his newfound passion to drive him, he moved to Australia on a one-year working holiday visa and worked as a bartender.
Once his visa expired, he decided to move to Manila to live with his family, who are originally from the Philippines. He’s already looking forward to his next great adventure and credits his connections with other travellers and having a positive outlook as the main takeaways from his experience. “The people around you are everything,” says LeRoy. “Having positive people around you will make or break the adventure.”
Taking the Pressure Off
Travel is also a great way to escape the pressures of today’s work environment. This is what drew Jacie Houghton, a 25-year-old Journalism graduate from Ontario, to seek a new beginning teaching English in Thailand. “When I graduated from my program I went through a major quarter-life crisis,” says Jacie. “I wasn’t working in a field I wanted or even enjoyed and I got caught up in feeling like my life was over at 21 because of all the wrong paths I went down.” Browsing online led her to opportunities that provided TESOL (Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages) training and in no time she was off to Thailand where she began teaching.
She has since returned home to use her experience to propel her career forward in a major way! Jacie recently completed her first year as a Computing Systems & Business Major, a major shift from her Journalism degree. “A TESOL certificate looks good on a resume and teaching is a respected position [that] shows you can manage people and plan ahead,” says Jacie. “It provides great talking points for interviews and now I have no issue with public speaking. When you’re teaching 90 kids a day in three classes your jitters eventually go away altogether.”
Jacie has a new outlook on life since her experience abroad.
As expectations continue to soar for recent grads and young workers, and it is easy for dreams and ambitions to get lost in the shuffle. However, as these three wanderers have clearly demonstrated, a little risk can bring great reward.