Design Your Life
The Black Expat: From Jobless To Influencing Others To Move Abroad
By DeAnna Taylor
Meet Nathalie, a fabulous 27-year-old Black Expat from Orlando, Florida. After college, she worked as an AmeriCorps VISTA member with the Together for Tomorrow program with the United Way of Central Florida for a year.
She currently lives in Seoul, South Korea where she works as a middle school English teacher. She has lived in the country for four years and loves her life there.
We had the chance to speak with her about her life as a Black Expat.
Travel Noire: Why did you make the move to Korea?
Nathalie: Making the move to Korea wasn’t an easy decision. It was a combination of factors that led me down this path. I hear so many stories of people walking into the job they dread one day and just quitting to travel the world. That was NOT me.
I narrowed down my choice to Korea based on the benefits provided, cost of living, and quality of life. I thought that teaching abroad could one-up my resume for future positions, so that is what propelled me to take this chance. So I garnered up the courage and applied to teach in Korea through the EPIK program.
I was initially denied for the program and several local entry-level jobs. It got to a point where I was kind of helpless; I had no real job to look forward to, so I made an ultimatum with myself. Go hard with the job search, both in Korea and the Orlando area. If nothing is fruitful before March, then move to New York City.
In February 2015, a school in Korea finally decided to interview me, and the next day I found out that they offered me the position. Three weeks later, I was flying to Korea, starting my new life!
Travel Noire: What challenges have you faced as a black woman in Korea?
Nathalie: In my personal experience, I believe the challenges I have faced in Korea are based mostly on me being a foreign woman, not just a black woman. However, I do have a specific example that definitely plays into race.
Nathalie: Subscribe for more travel-related videos on YouTube at travelingnat.
DeAnna Taylor is a criminal defense Attorney turned travel writer. The Charlotte native recently completed one year abroad working as an English teacher in South Korea. Her hobbies include fitness, traveling to new countries, and trying new foods.