There is absolutely no career advisor anywhere on this planet that professes Taiwan as a good place to get started.
Every single *male*
'big nose-er' who is here (most of us English teachers) are in the same 'boat' as you, and follow this montra:
Reason #1 for justifying a life in Taiwan:
"Taiwan has amazing women that put a smile on your face daily. no doubt"
"Taiwan is, by far, the most affordable of the few Asian permanent
"Taiwan offers western transplants a sense of an 'exoctic, non mediocre' lifestyle without the danger and instability of other locales in the east"
"They are friendly mo-fos who let you live very well
county without speaking a lick
of their language while concurrently giving a fuck about their culture"
So no, if none of these sentences sounds like a justification for you, go somewhere else because Taiwan pays like shit and there are too many smart (but also trapped) locals who have to fight for the limited opportunities that exist here
Yeah, it was the same in mainland China... most of the teachers on the mainland are like the waiters in New York who all want to become actors, very few actually succeed.
Aside from those four reasons, I love the different cultural setting, I really enjoy getting to use my Chinese in daily life, it is far away from my family, and I am utterly disillusioned with the political situation in the USA (I think this relates to our culture, it is not purely an economic issue or a question of electing new leaders) and just want to get out at this point.
My perspective is that Taiwan maybe has low pay and limited opportunities, but isn't it the same everywhere now? Career opportunities in my home country (the USA) are very bleak too. There was a recent report about how over 50% of fresh graduates are underemployed, and the disastrous job reports from the last few months make me feel like it could be many years and large structural adjustments to the world economy before the situation goes back to anything approaching normal. Out of the people I graduated with most are not doing so well. One person got an ibanking job, laid off after one year and unemployed ever since, many people ended up teaching in Asia, many people are working non college jobs or crappy sales jobs, some people escaped to graduate school, some joined the military. Out of the people who are working at professional jobs in their fields, many are working at jobs paying low wages ($12-14 an hour) with questionable advancement opportunities (for example, they have coworkers with CPAs and many years of experience working for less than $35,000 a year in one of the most expensive areas in the USA). These people all went to a medium sized state research university, the highest ranked one in our state. A few people are doing well, while a large percentage of these people are not getting the work experience that they need to get started in their careers.
My depressingly overachieving cousins all seem to be getting jobs as doctors or management consultants or big law lawyers...but I think it is only a small fraction of people who are able to do this, and I don't have much of a shot at these types of jobs right now, too mediocre
Working in Taiwan would be a dream for me, and in my opinion it is a dream worth striving for. Still, as an American the best career possibilities are probably in the USA... I don't want to still be teaching in 10 years and always be wondering what would have happened if I had just moved to DC or something and tried to build my dream career there instead. It is a hard decision