JETAA UK Careers Forum 2017

27th October 2017

JETAA UK Careers Forum 2017

On Friday 6th October we held our annual JETAA UK Careers Forum at Asia House in London.

It was wonderful to welcome back all of the newly returned JETs and JET alumni from a range of industries and backgrounds, who took part in our panel and break-out discussions. We hope that the forum was able to offer key advice and insight, and a little bit of encouragement for the post-JET experience for the recent returnees.

This year we also had an exhibitors’ floor where organisations, who seek to tap our pool of talented and diverse individuals, were able to showcase their companies and job offerings. I’d like to thank all of those who exhibited, were guest speakers, or took part in our panel and break-out discussions.

Supporting companies and organisations include: Toshiba of Europe Ltd., Mitsubishi Corporation International (Europe) Plc,  Japan National Tourism Organization, the UK Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Toyota Motoring Manufacturing UK, Ambassadeurs, Peek Content, Japan in Perspective, Department of International Trade, Deloitte LLP, Intralink, Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation, Teach First, Inside Japan Tours, People First Recruitment, Dragon Road, PS English, Local Government Association National Graduate Development Programme & University of Sheffield, School of East Asian Studies & Transforming Lives Appeal, and Seashell Trust.

It was great having you all with us for the day!

The event also featured a CV Clinic where experts from Reading University’s Career Service offered our returnees help and support with leveraging skills learned on the JET Programme and promoting them effectively on paper.

After a productive day of discussions, exhibitions, panels, and Q&As, the Japan Local Government Centre kindly hosted an invaluable networking reception in the evening where we heard words of wisdom from Minister Shinichi Iida, and words of encouragement from Sarah Parsons, chair of JETAA UK.

This year JET returnees took part in a stamp rally competition in which one of them was lucky to win a Toshiba laptop, awarded by Mr Watanabe, senior manager of corporate business planning, at Toshiba of Europe Ltd. Congratulations once again to Matthias O'Toole-Howes! We hope it will bring success in your job search!

Finally, thank you to EVERYONE who attended the Careers Forum last Friday. We hope that it was hugely beneficial for returnees and exhibitors alike, and we would like to wish the newly returned JET alumni all the best in adjusting back to life in the UK and success for the future.

Please continue to maintain your special relationship and connections with Japan. We would like to encourage each of you to reach out to your local JETAA chapters, who will be thrilled to welcome you as our JETAA family continues to grow.


Returnee Comments


Jaasir Ali – Saitama Prefecture (ALT for two years)

“It has been a really good event. I feel a lot of comfort from hearing stories of previous JETs. It has shown me that there is not just one answer and there are a great variety of areas and industries that my skills learnt in Japan would be valuable in. I am grateful for all of the JET alumni for coming today and sharing their stories. I feel reassured and appreciative of the network here and this amazing JETAA community.”


John – Takamatsu, Kagawa Prefecture

“I returned in 2013, but this was the first time for me to attend a JETAA UK Careers Forum. I am here today as I am looking for a new job, and I have found the event to be very helpful. After talking to a few of the exhibitors, I am particularly interested in the schemes offered within local governments with the National Graduate Development Programme as well as The Daiwa Foundation. Attending the forum today has really opened my eyes to job opportunities I never would have thought of before. It has also been really nice re-connecting with the JET community today.”


Catherine – (ALT for three years)

“I came here today to find out information on jobs relating to Japan and listen to the experiences of other JET alumni. Returning from Japan after being an ALT for 3 years and starting fresh is quite daunting, but after the Careers Forum today I feel reassured that I am not the only one going through this situation.”


Callum – Sapporo (2 years)

“I am fortunate to already be employed, so I am attending today on behalf of my company to look for potential candidates from the recent returnees and do my bit to give back to the JET community.”


Jeremy & Neil – Nagasaki Prefecture (ALTs for two/three years)

“Today’s forum was very well prepared and has given us lots of exciting ideas for the future. Also, after meeting another JET alum who was an ALT in Nagasaki, we are thrilled that the connection with Nagasaki can continue even after returning to the UK.”


Exhibitors and Speakers


Claire Brothers – Inside Japan Tours

Claire has worked for four years at Inside Japan Tours, a company of around 100 employees that was started by two former JETs 17 years ago. It now has offices in Bristol, Nagoya, Brisbane and Colorado.

“It is not the first time for me to attend the JETAA Careers Forum. I was on the panel and break-out session two years ago, but this year I am exhibiting. I am here to meet recent returnees and promote my company as a potential employer. Most of my colleagues are ex-JETs, so I thought it would be very important for me to attend today and give something back to the JET community. If anyone today isinterested in working for Inside Japan Tours, we would gratefully receive their CVs at”


Riyoko Shibe – The Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation

The Daiwa Anglo-Japanese Foundation is a charity that fosters links between Japan and the UK through grants, awards and scholarships. The Foundation organises events and political science/social science seminars, and supports Japanese artists by hosting exhibitions at their in-house gallery.

“It has been wonderful meeting the recently-returned JETs and I have received quite a bit of interest in our scholarships and schemes. I am here to potentially recruit, but also to raise general awareness about the Foundation and to promote all of the things that we are involved in.”


Peter Bernstein – PS English

Peter is the founder of PS English, an English teaching school offering private classes for a vast range of students, face-to-face or online.

“I attended the JETAA Careers Forum several years ago, but this is my first time in a while. I am here to recruit freelance English teachers. I find that it is so important to take the opportunity to have face-to-face interaction with potential teachers and it was wonderful to come here today to meet so many people with an interest and love for Japan.”


Rachel McCrystal – Seashell Trust

Rachel has done lots of prominent work in the non-profit sector for various national and overseas projects. She currently works for Seashell Trust, a charity that supports children and young adults with complex learning disabilities.

“I am attending today to be a panellist on two of the panels however, on a personal level, I have found today to be very inspiring. I got to meet lots of JET alumni and there has been a buzz around the whole day with people who share the excitement to use Japanese on a professional and/or personal basis. I made a lot of good contacts today which I did not expect. Also, as a previous chair of the JETAA North-West chapter, I have particularly enjoyed the opportunity to reconnect with JET alumni.”


Florence Henry - Local Government Association, National Graduate Development Programme (NGDP)

Florence is a National Management Trainee at Barking and Dagenham Council. The NGDP is a fast-track public sector management scheme offering training and development in local councils, and opportunities to make a real impact on a social level.

“It was the first time for me to attend this event and I didn’t know much about The JET Programme before. I have enjoyed talking to intelligent and enthusiastic people, and I have received a lot of interest in the National Graduate Development Programme. I look forward to following-up with everyone post-event and I will certainly stay in touch with JET alumni in the future.”


Jeff Jordan – Deloitte LLP

Jeff returned to the UK in 2016 from Fukuoka, where he was an ALT for three years. After meeting a representative of Deloitte LLP at last year’s Careers Forum, Jeff successfully applied for a graduate position with the audit/financial advisor/tax service organisation. Deloitte LLP has attended the JETAA UK Careers Forum for the past five years.

“I think that the Careers Forum is extremely useful for JETs returning from Japan. It’s a great opportunity to get to grips with the currently employment situation, which can change drastically during the time you are living abroad. You can also see the types of roles available for people who have been working as an ALT and see where skills can be transferred into a variety of roles and industries. Meeting the older JET alumni, you are encouraged by the range of opportunities and reassured that you are not limited to a particular role.”

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