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What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
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whodat689 Offline
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Post: #1
What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
I'm very interested in working and living abroad especially somewhere like Brazil, Colombia, U.K.

At this current moment, I know my major/degree, dealing with IT is needed all around the world as my degree focuses on security aspect which protects companies assets,customer information,networks.....but recently my university told me they are ending this program/switching it more to business rather than computers/IT, so either way It wouldn't be worth it for me to stay here and finish this degree, on top of that a bachelors isn't offered in this in many schools rather than online universities which I'm not too sure about!?!

Long story short, I only hear about people living abroad and teaching English....making peanuts and struggling....which I don't want to have to resort to just getting by rather than landing a great paying job and living like a rockstar in a foreign country.

I'm not too into Business or INT business......not sure if it's worth it for me to stick with computers or switch to something different that can take me around the world
11-30-2011 03:03 AM
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PseudoExpert Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
I'd say you should've studied harder and chosen a better university.Also not all technical degrees are created equal.It's hard for somebody to give you advice,without you saying where/which year do you study(can you transfer somewhere,what's your GPA).Because I can tell you go to MIT EECS,study hard and work wherever you want later.But maybe you can't get/transfer to MIT undergrad right now.
Saying that not a lot of schools have undergrad degrees is ignorant.
11-30-2011 05:28 AM
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klosck Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
1. You could try to become a Foreign Service Officer with the US State Department. Check out their web page to see what they are looking for. I think Political Science and Economics are popular degrees. However they background check is very strict I'm told. I don't think you are supposed to have smoked weed before....

2. Engineering- I have some friends who are engineers. Many get sent around the globe to places like Germany, Italy and China to work at their subsidiary's or supplier's factories. I have a buddy that was also hired at a firm in Prague.

3. A US Military base (not as bad as it sounds). -For these jobs, the degree you need varies. Check out usajobs.gov and search for overseas jobs. Pick a career field that seems to be everywhere. You will need to gain an entry level position stateside, put in a couple years, and get enough experience to get selected for an overseas assignemnt.

The more advanced degree you get, the easier it will be...but you should expect lots of hard work, as everyone wants to work overseas.
11-30-2011 05:50 AM
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Hencredible Casanova Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
(11-30-2011 03:03 AM)whodat689 Wrote:  I'm very interested in working and living abroad especially somewhere like Brazil, Colombia, U.K.

At this current moment, I know my major/degree, dealing with IT is needed all around the world as my degree focuses on security aspect which protects companies assets,customer information,networks.....but recently my university told me they are ending this program/switching it more to business rather than computers/IT, so either way It wouldn't be worth it for me to stay here and finish this degree, on top of that a bachelors isn't offered in this in many schools rather than online universities which I'm not too sure about!?!

Long story short, I only hear about people living abroad and teaching English....making peanuts and struggling....which I don't want to have to resort to just getting by rather than landing a great paying job and living like a rockstar in a foreign country.

I'm not too into Business or INT business......not sure if it's worth it for me to stick with computers or switch to something different that can take me around the world

Engineering for sure, especially in the oil industry. The problem with government (military and foreign service) is that you don't choose where you get stationed, they do.
(This post was last modified: 11-30-2011 06:43 AM by Hencredible Casanova.)
11-30-2011 06:41 AM
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Dash Global Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
The best degree hands down to get that will guarantee you a decent job ALMOST ANYWHERE in my opinion is an education degree.

International Schools pay well. (Im not talking about teaching English making peanuts)

Can pretty much PICK your city.
(This post was last modified: 11-30-2011 07:21 AM by Dash Global.)
11-30-2011 07:20 AM
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klosck Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
[/quote]

Engineering for sure, especially in the oil industry. The problem with government (military and foreign service) is that you don't choose where you get stationed, they do.
[/quote]



Most State Deptarment employees have what they call a "hardship tour" at first, but whats a hardship for some, might not be for others. For example, Almaty, Kazakhstan might be undesirable for some, but I would love to get posted there. Even in the shit holes like Iraq or Afghanistan, they still maintain a decent standard of living, but if you do get posted somewhere shitty, you just have to ride it out till your next tour.


Also, uniformed military don't have a choice, but military civilians do. But their choices are limited to where the bases are: Germany, Italy, South Korea, Turkey, Japan. (all not bad locations)
11-30-2011 07:40 AM
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UrbanNerd Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
As someone in the software engineering field for 20 years, I always tell folks to take computer SCIENCE instead of the I.T. specific degrees because you can do I.T. with a CS degree (or concentration because I was a math major) but you cannot do hard-core CS/Software Engineering jobs with many I.T. degrees.
(This post was last modified: 11-30-2011 08:40 AM by UrbanNerd.)
11-30-2011 08:40 AM
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defguy Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
Well Ill tell you this much, dont think an International Business degree is going to let you travel. 99% of the international business students never even get out of their state after graduation. Of course this isnt the real statistic but im making a point. Something that is universal will allow you to work in another country. Information Technology is universal, medical degrees, Accounting, teaching english, you name it, just make sure its the same no matter what country you go to.

Look at some of the posts by YoungMobileGlobal on this forum he offers some good advice for those wanting to get overseas. If you can find a way to make $$ online, thats the best thing you can do. Work anywhere, anytime, anyplace. Please dont spam him with messages, just read his posts by clicking "see all posts by youngmobileglobal" on his profile.

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(This post was last modified: 11-30-2011 09:49 PM by defguy.)
11-30-2011 09:49 PM
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ersatz Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
If software is something you like doing, go to a place that will give you a real software engineering / computer science degree. Preferably software engineering since it has that magical 'engineering' word in it that enables so many visa categories even though the difference between the degrees are negligible. And start making software. Make a website with django, write a mobile app for your smart phone (preferably iOS/Android), etc. If your going to do software although, you'll probably end up somewhere in seattle, new york or the SF bay area.
(This post was last modified: 12-01-2011 02:02 AM by ersatz.)
12-01-2011 02:01 AM
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joehoya Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
Instead of focusing on a degree where you can find a job anywhere, look at a degree that will allow you to do your job FROM anywhere. I work as a freelance web and database developer. As long as I have an internet connection and my laptop, I can work. Early next year, I will spend a few months in Costa Rica and/or Colombia. As far as my clients are concerned, I might as well be in Washington D.C. or Orlando.

The biggest downside to freelancing is that the pay can wind up being less than what one would earn from a normal job. Consistency in pay is another issue, but not a huge one if you have skills that are in demand. I was recently offered a job in the U.S. that would have been close to a 40% pay increase. However, my travel would be limited to my vacation time and when my manager would "allow" me to work from home. For me, it was easy turning that job down, because it would take away what was most important to me, my freedom. What is the point in making that extra 40% if I don't have the time and freedom to spend it the way I want to?

I know of other skilled professionals that have similar setups. Another option is to pick a career that allows you to take a lot of time off. I know a guy who works as an ER nurse for 3 months, then spends the next 3 months in South America. If you can find a career that has a lot of contract/seasonal employment that is high paying, you can have the same setup.

I would bet that Tax Accountants could set up something similar.
12-01-2011 03:02 AM
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pitt Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
Joehoya you're the man. I like the fact of freedom being emphasised a lot on this forum, i think is the perfect combination a human being should aim for (freedom and money).
12-01-2011 03:35 AM
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jonmarsh80 Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
There are many courses available for the study and we can use their knowledge in abroad. We can do degree courses and also can get the teaching on some topic by personal institutes. In abroad IT, Hardware, Software, Networking jobs are available
12-01-2011 12:36 PM
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Viralata Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
(11-30-2011 03:03 AM)whodat689 Wrote:  Long story short, I only hear about people living abroad and teaching English

If this is the only thing you've heard about then it's probably because of the people you're talking to.

I live and work in South America, right now Bogota, and I meet plenty of foreigners in every field imaginable. The one thing that many have in common is that they speak multiple languages and they are driven and highly skilled (the "rockstars" anyway). I've worked in Peru, Argentina and Chile and lived for a year in Brasil. I speak spanish and portuguese. My good friend from Ireland is a lawyer and he lives in Rio, but he is not working in law. He started a logistics company for the mining and petroleum industries. In his case, he decided to do whatever it took to stay in Brasil, even changing careers. His road has been difficult because he started from scratch.

Brasil is not the easiest place to find work as a foreigner. There is a massive bureaucracy and they have enough educated people to fill most of their labour needs.

There is no magic bullet to score a good foreign job. It takes determination, planning and a little luck. For every gringo that dreams of living in South America, banging latinas every night in their penthouse, there are 100 harder working locals, fluent in their own culture and who are likely less expensive than you. So, if you want a "real" job, you better have the skills to justify it.

I work in an job where foreign travel is the norm. I have technical skills that are uncommon, even in North America, and broadly applicable to my industry. I've known I wanted to live in South America for at least 13 years. After at least a dozen trips of several months at a time, it has only been in the last year or so that I have enough money saved(for my lifestyle), enough contacts, and confidence in my prospects that I could move my consultancy down here permanently. I've traveled down here enough to know how I need to develop myself to take advantage of the market. I will still likely have to take a job off-continent from time to time.

My advice: Finish school doing something you love and then figure out how to make it fit in with your long term goals. If what you love is living someplace else, then move there and make it work. Take some long trips to places you think you might like to live, then get to know the language and the culture...then you'll start to have an idea of what's possible and understand the sacrifices necessary to get you to your goals.
(This post was last modified: 12-01-2011 02:06 PM by Viralata.)
12-01-2011 01:35 PM
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whodat689 Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
(12-01-2011 01:35 PM)Viralata Wrote:  
(11-30-2011 03:03 AM)whodat689 Wrote:  Long story short, I only hear about people living abroad and teaching English

If this is the only thing you've heard about then it's probably because of the people you're talking to.

I live and work in South America, right now Bogota, and I meet plenty of foreigners in every field imaginable. The one thing that many have in common is that they speak multiple languages and they are driven and highly skilled (the "rockstars" anyway). I've worked in Peru, Argentina and Chile and lived for a year in Brasil. I speak spanish and portuguese. My good friend from Ireland is a lawyer and he lives in Rio, but he is not working in law. He started a logistics company for the mining and petroleum industries. In his case, he decided to do whatever it took to stay in Brasil, even changing careers. His road has been difficult because he started from scratch.

Brasil is not the easiest place to find work as a foreigner. There is a massive bureaucracy and they have enough educated people to fill most of their labour needs.

There is no magic bullet to score a good foreign job. It takes determination, planning and a little luck. For every gringo that dreams of living in South America, banging latinas every night in their penthouse, there are 100 harder working locals, fluent in their own culture and who are likely less expensive than you. So, if you want a "real" job, you better have the skills to justify it.

I work in an job where foreign travel is the norm. I have technical skills that are uncommon, even in North America, and broadly applicable to my industry. I've known I wanted to live in South America for at least 13 years. After at least a dozen trips of several months at a time, it has only been in the last year or so that I have enough money saved(for my lifestyle), enough contacts, and confidence in my prospects that I could move my consultancy down here permanently. I've traveled down here enough to know how I need to develop myself to take advantage of the market. I will still likely have to take a job off-continent from time to time.

My advice: Finish school doing something you love and then figure out how to make it fit in with your long term goals. If what you love is living someplace else, then move there and make it work. Take some long trips to places you think you might like to live, then get to know the language and the culture...then you'll start to have an idea of what's possible and understand the sacrifices necessary to get you to your goals.
Thanks everyone for the advice, viralata, what career are you in exactly?
12-01-2011 08:49 PM
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Viralata Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
Mining.
12-01-2011 09:37 PM
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scotian Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
In my personal experience as a technician in the oil industry, I know FAR more people with only a high school diploma (some HS drop outs) who've worked overseas than those with degrees.
12-02-2011 10:54 AM
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Viralata Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
Apples and Oranges.

Our drilling projects aren't as huge and don't rely so much on highly skilled labour. A typical exploration program in mining has foreign drillers and drilling foreman, other than that everyone is local and trained locally. The technical staff and consultants are almost always foreign.

My brasilian friend who mud-logs for Petrobras off-shore of Rio tells me 90% of the people on the rig are foreign.

But yeah, I agree...the skilled labour route can be a great way to see the world. You'll still need to put your time in though...
(This post was last modified: 12-02-2011 05:02 PM by Viralata.)
12-02-2011 04:51 PM
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xmlenigma Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
What kinda technical skills do you have Viralata?
02-27-2012 04:57 AM
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Hades Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
I second the engineering. You can get jobs pretty much anywhere with a solid degree and language skills.

The blog is back up and running.
02-27-2012 06:04 AM
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Aliblahba Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
Major in killing. Join the military, excel in infantry, advance into spec ops, then get out and work as a merc. There will ALWAYS be a need for paid guns. Substitute the years of college for enlisted time. The pay is better, guaranteed overseas deployment, and an interesting lifestyle rolled into one.

I'm being serious.

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02-27-2012 09:48 AM
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highandtight Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
I have an engineering degree. I tried hard (and failed) to find work overseas out of college.

Of my friends whom have found work abroad, nearly everyone has done so by working for a multinational company and transferring to an overseas office. That method is great because you can retain a U.S. level paycheck while still living in cool locations. I've got a buddy angling to run an entire company division in Romania or Bulgaria. Pretty sweet.
03-01-2012 03:49 PM
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Kdog Offline
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Wink RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
(12-02-2011 10:54 AM)scotian Wrote:  In my personal experience as a technician in the oil industry, I know FAR more people with only a high school diploma (some HS drop outs) who've worked overseas than those with degree

Sorry for the late response Scotian.... Just wondering what kind of jobs those ppl with high school diplomas have abroad? I have read your insane post about Fort Mac (awesome thread)Big Grin. But I am just curious about oil/gas jobs you can get abroad.
09-12-2012 03:24 PM
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BIGINJAPAN Offline
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RE: What the best degrees/majors to work abroad?
I have an engineering degree and when I was working for a major company right out of University (2003) it was pretty easy to get transfered around to different offices within the company. I looked into applying for other jobs overseas and at the time if you weren't fluent in another language they weren't highering.

I think a cool job and one where you are guaranteed work and can finance a life abroad in different countries is getting your helicopter license. In Alberta the cost is pretty much the cost of a degree except you are done in a couple months. I paid almost $40,000 back in 99-03 for a degree and now a helicopter license is $50,000.

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09-14-2012 10:28 AM
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