DeJordique Pearson never planned to be an English teacher in Vietnam, but he quickly fell in love with his "backup country."

DeJordique Pearson never planned to be an English teacher in Vietnam. An English major with a concentration in Linguistics and a passion for phonology, DeJordique decided that after graduation he would teach English in Japan. But facing long waiting lists for Japanese positions, he shifted his focus to Vietnam. Because the Vietnamese language has not been as studied as extensively, he was also excited at the opportunities for linguistic investigation.

DeJordique quickly fell in love with Vietnam. In fact, he later got a position in Japan but then gave it up after a year. “The beauty of Vietnam was cemented in my brain, making it all I dreamt of during my time in Japan.”

He now works there as a teacher, translator, and academic director, and he is interested in opening his own school. Although none of this was in the original game plan, DeJordique says that things have worked out even better than he imagined. He advises current students to consider teaching abroad, and not to get too hung up on any particular place: “If you are lucky like me,” he says, ”maybe, just maybe, your backup country will turn out better than your primary one.”


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