Ruth Tan | MBU English Alumna Update

Ruth Tan, an English and TESOL graduate of MBU, has seen the Lord work in her life in unique ways – including sending her back to her home country, Singapore. Upon arrival, she became CELTA certified to teach English as a second language and applied for several teaching and communications positions, receiving various job offers: two to teach English at a tuition center and one to work for Study Group, a company based in the United Kingdom. After prayer and consideration, God led her to accept the job with Study Group.

Study Group is an organization designed to help international students assimilate themselves into the university culture. Their philosophy, “A better world through education,” is exhibited in the diverse array of students who apply: 99% are from Europe, the Middle East, the Americas, or Asia, desiring to study in either the UK, the USA, Ireland, the Netherlands, or Australia. Study Group partners with several universities and offers foundational programs that help students adjust to the new culture and brush up on their English.

About three months into this new role, Ruth received an email from the Hong Kong Education Board. An application that she had sent in four months prior – and had subsequently forgotten about – had been noticed, and, after a few rounds of interviews, Ruth was entered into a pool of potential candidates for English teachers in the Hong Kong public school system.

Hong Kong’s system is approval-based. If the teacher is approved, their resume and portfolio are uploaded to the public school job portal. When a public school in Hong Kong needs a teacher, they access this site and scout for potential candidates. As one of these, Ruth has been waitlisted for the 2022/23 school year. Although this does not guarantee a position, Ruth is thankful for even this small window of opportunity that God has provided for her to minister in Hong Kong.

While she waits, she works as an Assessment Coordinator for Study Group. Her roles include assessing international students’ curricula and handling university applications for their UK partners, who work with students from all over the world. In addition, she liaises with the sales team, various university managements, her team in Singapore, and her colleagues from all around the world. Ruth attributes her degrees in English and TESOL to much of her success in developing her communication skills to fulfill this role.

Ruth’s degrees have certainly proven useful in her current position, but other aspects of her education have played a part as well. Ruth acknowledges, “I think my time as an international student allows me to empathize with the students who would like to pursue further education in another country.” Ruth is uniquely qualified in this area, having moved from Singapore to the USA herself to study at MBU. Because of her experience, God has placed her in the position to understand the students’ struggles and needs on a different level than others might.

Ruth considers both her job and this new opportunity as answers to prayer. When COVID-19 hit the job markets in Singapore, finding a full-time job was difficult, but He provided for her miraculously with not just one job offer, but several, and Ruth is thankful for the one she chose: “My department is filled with such kind, caring colleagues…. They make work fun and enjoyable!” Additionally, she thanks God for a window – and maybe a door – into Hong Kong’s educational system, and she is excited for the new adventures that await her. However, in the meantime, Ruth rests in this: “Who knows? I’m just learning to wait contentedly on God.”

To learn more about MBU’s English major, click here.

Are you an MBU alumnus? Let us know how God has led you since graduation!