Alumni Spotlight: Nico Mineo


Nico is passionate about biology and she loves learning about different cultures. Becoming a TEFL teacher has opened up career opportunities for her to teach what she is passionate about to children around the world.

Why did you choose this program?

I chose this program because I liked how well it was structured. They provide you with over 300 hours of classroom experience and you get to work firsthand with children all across Austria. The program offered the support I needed to build my teaching qualifications both theoretically and practically.

What did your program provider assist you with, and what did you have to organize on your own?

We were provided with transportation to and from all of our accommodations and schools. We were given weekly food vouchers and very comfortable living standards. We did have to organize our own travel to Austria; however, the staff was very responsive via email for any concerns we may have had. The senior teachers were always available with any queries regarding living in Austria, as well as any concerns about our academic interests.

What is one piece of advice you'd give to someone going on your program?

If you are considering this program, then you should be ready for a lot of written work, but it is worthwhile. This course is built for students ready to transition into the ESL world even if they have no prior experience. It is a good start to see if ESL teaching is a good match for you and you also have the opportunity to do some personal traveling around Austria on the weekends.

What does an average day/week look like as a participant of this program?

There were some weeks where we only had a 20 minute commute while other times they were over an hour. Early mornings were an every day routine, but you would be free after 5 almost every evening. The lesson plans are already provided for you, so you can jump straight into teaching. At first, it may seem overwhelming, but as the weeks go on, you feel more confident and soon after you get to start creating your own lesson plans with the guidance of senior teachers.

Going into your experience abroad, what was your biggest fear, and how did you overcome it? How did your views on the issue change?

My biggest fear was not knowing any German. I was eager to begin learning some phrases when we arrived; however, this program has many benefits for non-German speakers. They provide you with most of things you need in order to get through the course without needing any German. Therefore, if you are interested in learning German, you have to make your own time for it.

What was you favorite part of the experience?

My favorite part of this experience was working with the children all over Austria. They are very eager to meet you and begin learning English. If you are a fun spirited, energetic person, then this course is a good match for you. The kids really get into the interactive learning style; therefore, if you are up for dancing and singing, then they are too!