A wry look at the world of job fairs…..

1.     The Guy in the Hat

Normally wearing  a cowboy hat but sometimes looking like an extra from “Peaky  Blinders”, the Guy in the Hat has decided to make a fashion statement to stand out from the crowd. You can see him a mile away, and he’s always at the front of the queue at signup, his massive Stetson blocking all light in the ballroom.  Urban legends abound about The Guy in the Hat- a friend of a friend used to work with him in China where he made the best margaritas and got all his DP students 7s. Another tells of the time the Guy in the Hat spent a summer living in the Amazon so as to better explain the nuances of the tribal hierarchy to his Anthropology class. The Guy in the Hat never forgot what attracted him to this job- for him teaching is about the journey and not the destination.

2.     The Director with No Jobs

He got a phone call  from his HR manager as he was boarding the plane to Boston/London/San Francisco/HK (delete as appropriate) to say that offer he made to fill the last school vacancy has been accepted. So technically his weekend is free- except for the dreaded sign up session! He’s posted no vacancies but a big sign behind him reads  “HAPPY TO TALK ABOUT FUTURE OPPORTUNITIES”. TDWNJ spends the rest of the weekend holding court in the bar across the street educating other school heads on how to get the best staff. He has it solved. The other school heads secretly hope his board finds out that he flew halfway around the world and recruited no one.

3.     The Physics Teacher

Identified by the stack of invitations to interview, this endangered species is the Supermodel of the international school world. Not getting out of bed for less than $10,000 a day and a top class spectrometer, she spends the weekend picking and choosing which school head is worthy of her presence. The interview is then flipped and it is up to the school director to convince The Physics Teacher why their school is the best natural habitat for her greatness. She is wooed by talks of a new physics lab and plans for an observatory are rolled out so she may teach us lesser mortals about the wonders of Black Holes. But alas, it is all a game for she eventually signs with the school with the highest salary.

4.     The Whenwes

The Whenwes are a couple in their late fifties/early sixties who have spent their whole lives on the circuit. So called because every story they MAKE you listen to begins with “When We lived in… Dar/KL/DRC (delete as appropriate), the Whenwes never, ever, ever call a city or a country by its full title, instead abbreviating it until it no longer exists as a place. Sometimes the Whenwes will abbreviate the abbreviations until the only people who can understand them are other Whenwes.  They’ve been there and done that and the experiences they had can never be experienced by you. Because it was better there before mass tourism or war or pollution or corruption or materialism changed it. They use job fairs to meet up and reminisce about that time they caught Malaria climbing Kili before mobile phones or the internet. The Whenwes spent Christmas Day 1982 with the Guy in the Hat.

5.      The Sunday Morning Warrior

He’s had 25 interviews over two days and still no offers. Seen in the hotel lobby, bleary eyed and near caffeine -poisoned, The Sunday Morning Warrior redefines the concept of Growth Mindset and won’t let a little thing like 25 straight rejections put him off. He’ll seek out school heads and ask for feedback, focusing on the exact reason why he wasn’t hired for that exact school and approach others asking if they’ve hired for all positions. Be nice to The Sunday Morning Warrior- someday you’ll be working for him.