Teach English Abroad in Spain with CIEE
86% Rating
(20 Reviews)

Teach English Abroad in Spain with CIEE

Teach in Asia in 2018, and get paid!
Looking for a way to travel and teach abroad and still earn a competitive salary? CIEE can help you make it happen! Our Teach Abroad programs in China and South Korea start in February 2018. Teach in Thailand has one and two-semester opportunities with start dates in May 2018. See you there!

The CIEE Teach in Spain program places participants as paid Language Assistants at primary or secondary public schools in the region of Madrid. Participants are placed all around the region and can find whatever living abroad experience they are looking for: whether it is an immersive Spanish experience or a more urban, international expat culture. You would also have plenty of free time to travel, study Spanish, volunteer, or give private English lessons!

From deciding where you would like to teach abroad, to preparing to return to your home country after your time abroad, CIEE will be there to support you. In addition to finding a job for you in Spain, you will be provided complete pre-departure support including an online course to help you prepare for your adventure in Spain. You will have visa guidance and be enrolled in travel insurance. Our 24/7 support and in-country orientation will ensure that you are supported throughout your entire program with CIEE Teach Abroad.

A CIEE TEFL Certification will give you the tools you need to succeed at being a teacher starting on your first day. Learn more about CIEE’s TEFL Certification Courses.

Locations
Europe » Spain » Madrid
Europe » Spain
Length
6-12 Months
1 Year+
Salary / Benefits
Stipend: 1000 Euros monthly; accommodations are provided for the first 9 nights in Madrid, though guidance and advice in arranging permanent housing is provided by our staff in Madrid.
Classroom Audience
Children
High School
Middle School
Currency
USD

Questions & Answers

Finding housing was pretty easy. There was a lot of anxiety when I initially started the process, but once I got started it was no big deal. I think I looked at 4 or 5 places and once I picked a place I got the keys that day. It was also nice because landlords let you pick how long you want your contract to last, so you don't have to sign for a year if you aren't staying quite that long.
Yes, it is enough money to get by. Although, if you want to travel, I recommend doing some tutoring lessons. Since you only work 16 hours a week, picking up 4 to 5 extra hours isn't a big deal-also a great way to meet locals. I made an extra 400-500 Euros a month this way.

Program Reviews

  • Benefits
    84%
  • Support
    88%
  • Fun
    88%
  • Facilities
    91%
  • Safety
    90%

Program Reviews (20)

Default avatar
Brendan
Male
26 years old
San Sebastian de los Reyes, Madrid
Central Connecticut State University

The most amazing start to the most amazing life

10/10

A year ago I was just about to leave for Spain with CIEE, and little did I know it would change my life. They eased me into everything, which I thought was going to be a joke because I had already studied abroad in Salamanca three years prior. Thankfully they were there to thoroughly explain and guide me through things, and thank goodness I went to those orientations. I ended up make a friend base as well from CIEE. I ended up meeting someone that I'm head over heels for and I'm currently living with them (empadronado which CIEE explained as well). I'm continuing a second year at the same elementary school, and I'm going to be an orientation leader this year for CIEE. They are always trying to improve year by year and I'm so excited that they are letting me become a part of their team!

Default avatar
Jose
Male
71 years old
Torrejon de Ardoz, Spain
Illinois State University

Great Opportunity, make of it what you will.

8/10

My name is Jose Colchado and I am a retired public school teacher, and university professor and administrator. I have over thirty years of education related experience and have taught at every grade level from kindergarten to post graduate.

Even through I am retired I have continued to be involved in teaching; as a substitute teacher, GED instructor, and conducting workshops.

I applied for the CIEE Teaching in Spain for two reasons; CIEE was the most responsive to my questions and provided guidance at all steps of the application process and I wanted a program in Spain where I could learn more about the country which had such a great influence on Mexico, my parents' home country. The application process can be difficult and will cost you money. For example, I had to go to California for the consulate "interview" which turned out to be just handing over my application papers. Once you get to Spain CIEE provides the support you need to finalize additional paperwork, assist with housing hunts and arranging for low cost daily transportation.

I asked to work with first and second graders and was assigned to the Colegio de San Blas in Ajalvir a suburb of Madrid ( a 30 minute train ride from Madrid ). I live in Torrejon de Ardoz a 15 minute bus ride from Ajalvir. I am glad I live and work in the suburbs. No long daily commute and still close enough to everything. I was surprised by two things at my school; the noise level and , what was to me, a lack of discipline, that takes away from instruction, and how little effort was made to make me feel welcome and part of the school ( it could have been me!). Because I am not the teacher "in charge" I get to teach without the responsibility for grading or other paperwork. The kids are great, just like first and second graders everywhere, eager to learn and willing to do whatever you ask them. I am able to incorporate movement and art in active learning to support the teaching by the teacher.

Teaching four days a week gives me plenty of time to travel, During four day weekends I have been to Valencia, Toledo, Cadiz, Austurias, Guadalajara, Seville and during holidays I went to Prague, Budapest, Vienna, Lisbon and I plan to go to Brussells and nearby cities and the Canary Islands. Bus, train and air travel is very inexpensive if you buy your tickets early. Housing during your travels can be cheap if all you need is a bed and a bath. In most cities, once you get to the city center, you can walk to most of the sites worth seeing. What an opportunity to travel throughout Europe!

Even though I have my own apartment, I live frugally and with my stipend I am able to meet my living expenses and have some money for travel ( I do supplement my travel with a small part of my retirement income).

There is so much to see and do. So much to learn. It all depends on what your priorities are and how you choose to spend your time and money!

How can this program be improved?

During the application process, applicants should be made aware that there are business that expedite things like the FBI report and apostille process . I am sure that program people are well aware of the problems people run into in the application process and ways to deal with these should be readily available to the applicants.
The host schools and teachers should be given guidelines on how to orient the the people assigned to their school: assign a teacher to be a "buddy" to help with whatever issues may arise and to make sure those assigned there are "included" in everyday activities like the discussions at break time; assist host teachers to know how to best use the knowledge and skills of the assigned assistants; the role and responsibility of the assistants to maintaining discipline in the classroom ( I found I did not understand what teachers would or would not tolerate in behavior) and making assistants aware of what they are expected to "teach" at least a week before.

Default avatar
Rebekah
Female
29 years old
Everywhere, USA
Purdue University

Teaching in Spain with CIEE

8/10

I love CIEE. I have studied abroad and now taught abroad twice through their organization. One of the main reasons I chose to teach abroad through CIEE was that they provide a very easy way to apply and give a lot of help and support through the whole process. I have always found the staff to be very friendly and helpful and would highly recommend CIEE to anyone who is interested in studying or teaching abroad.

How can this program be improved?

This program could be improved for the Teach in Spain Basic participants in the form of better information about the craziness of the apartment search in Madrid.

Default avatar
Andrea
Female
29 years old
Spain12
Florida International University

CIEE Madrid Teach Abroad Program

10/10

I can truly say I have learned alot, met wonderful people and grew professionally, all while immersing myself in a new culture. The CIEE team makes this transition into a new country and job smooth and you feel supported the whole way. One of my favorite memories of this experience was the last dinner of the orientation. In this dinner a group of people randomly sat at a table together for dinner and became a true group of friends. That moment set the tone for the rest of my time here. I am so happy I took the chance and came abroad because it changed my life.

Carlen
Female
24 years old
Austin, Texas

Expensive program, but a great way to arrive for year(s) in Spain!

9/10

It's definitely an expensive program - you should know that it's completely possible to work in Madrid directly through the Spanish Ministry of Education (the actual people who hire you) without paying a thing. It's called the Auxiliars de Conversacion program. BUT, I am very glad I chose to come through CIEE. It was worth the pay for me. They guarantee placement in Madrid rather than other regions of Spain. They helped immensely with pre-depature VISA paperwork, including fixing a mini-emergency while I was at the consulate missing a form.

Their application process is reliable, easy to understand, and in English, plus they actually reply when you email them, unlike the Spanish government. Upon arrival, they had everything sorted for airport transfers and a place to stay, as well as bringing former participants to share tips and tricks, guide us through our first days, and take us to cool local events. Most importantly they provided all they could to get us legally settled - residency card appointments and paperwork, transit cards, bank account, cell phone plan, etc. All has worked perfectly.

The truth about this program in Spain (with CIEE or the Ministry) is that your experience can vary WILDLY depending on your school placement. You may get lucky, like I did, with a centrally located school full of nice teachers and hardworking kids and an amazing principal who takes us out for drinks and lets us change our schedule if we need to. Or, you may get unlucky and get placed 2 hours by bus outside the city with irritable bosses who never let you change an inconvenient schedule and kids who don't listen, like a friend of mine in the same program. Nothing that can't be handled, and nothing big enough to demand a change, just consistently mildly unpleasant.

So if you can afford it, it's worth it, your life will be SO much less complicated. I never felt nervous or anxious coming abroad thanks to CIEE.

How can this program be improved?

It's really just quite expensive given it's possible to do the same thing for free. Just not as easy. You are paying for convenience.

Default avatar
Tim
Male
26 years old
San Antonio

Everything I've needed to make the move abroad

9/10

I've always wanted to come back to teach in Spain after having studied abroad here. CIEE offered a clear path to move here and they assisted me every step of the way. They went to great lengths to explain each step like securing a visa, getting a metro card, finding an apartment, and they even set up several in-country appointments for us so that we got off to the races after arriving in Spain. They have also offered fun events like free bike tours and other types of workshops that I have found to be fun. The staff are all very kind and knowledgeable, and I've enjoyed spending time with them. Definitely recommend CIEE's Teach in Spain program.

Default avatar
Dave
Male
38 years old
Fort Lauderdale, FL
American University

CIEE: A great representative and friend to have abroad

10/10

One year ago, I decided to make a bold life decision and go to Spain to teach abroad through the CIEE Teach in Spain program. Other than one semester in England as an undergrad, I had never done anything like this before. CIEE helped me through the arduous task of getting a Schengen visa, and helped me get settled in. Their orientation process was fun and informative, and throughout the year they had kept me informed of developments in the program and invited me to various dinners and meetings that they held. I made friends for life through the CIEE program. I also received my TEFL certification through CIEE as well. I stayed a second year in Spain, and continued with CIEE through their alumni ambassador program. I even contributed back by working as an orientation leader for the next generation of auxiliares.

CIEE was a great experience for me and I highly recommend it for anyone interested in traveling and teaching abroad. They prepared me very well for teaching English to students, living in Spain, and getting accustomed to Spanish culture.

Default avatar
Brandon
Male
28 years old
Florida

Adventure and Great Memories Await You with CIEE!!

10/10

Before I decided to embark on this journey with CIEE, I had already been abroad several times on my own and through my school. Thus, having a decent level of international exposure and experience with many international providers that cater to students and volunteers studying or working aboard, allows me to truly gauge this CIEE experience without any "first-timers" bias and "perfect-world" expectations.

Bottom line, CIEE is the best in the business of placing volunteers in teaching positions abroad. To make it plain, this company really stretches its arms and makes the effort to reach out to each individual volunteer that has signed up for its program. It is no secret that the greatest challenge that these types of programs face is being able to keep tabs on all of their signees. But CIEE has a cobra grip on this issue, and performs it with ease. Communication is actually this program's strongest asset. They don't just say in a tag-line on their website or send emails explaining how much they value their signees. They show it. I can appreciate a company that doesn't run like a "company" or a "system." This company makes sure that you have everything that you need, and holds an orientation that is beyond informative. They bring in providers that lend you their services throughout the duration of your stay aboard.

I couldn't be more pleased with this program, and if you are looking to channel your inner "Indiana Jones" or just go out and gain some life-changing international experience working with students of a different culture, choose CIEE. Don't pass up on this opportunity of a lifetime. I thank the Lord everyday that I didn't. I hope this helped!

How can this program be improved?

During orientation there is day dedicated to informing volunteers on how to find housing. I believe this session should be given an additional day because people who are abroad for the first time need additional support in this area and additional day would serve well to these individuals.

Default avatar
Sarah
Female
25 years old
Seattle, Washington
Whitman College

Teaching English in Madrid with CIEE!

9/10

I had the pleasure of teaching two years in Madrid through CIEE and wouldn't have had it any other way. Moving to a country where you don't know anyone, or speak the language can be an extremely nerve-wracking experience, but through the help of CIEE, this process couldn't have been better. The support I received, pre-departure, during orientation, and even throughout my first year made my decision to re-apply through them in my second year.
Although there are numerous programs one can use when applying to the auxiliar program, I truly felt like the assistance, support, and knowledge of the staff at CIEE is unparalleled. I enjoyed this program so much that I applied to be a Orientation leader both the summer of 2015 and 2016. It is such an incredible way to share experiences and advice with those who are in the same position as I was when I first came to Madrid. Being able to see both sides of this Teach Abroad program (applicant and staff) only reinforced my satisfaction with using CIEE to come abroad.

How can this program be improved?

I think this program could be improved by offering events or meet-ups throughout the year. Although I made the effort to reconnect and check in with those I met during orientation, it would be nice to have a few facilitated opportunities to reflect with your orientation-mates and leaders.

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Hannah
Female
24 years old
Westfield, Indiana
Butler University

Traveling and Teaching

10/10

I've currently been living in Spain for two months now and I have loved every second of it. This is the farthest and longest I've been away from my family but it has allowed me to grow as a person, both professionally and personally. CIEE was a big help when it came to the paperwork. They helped walk me through the Visa process, how to find an apartment, getting an international cellphone, opening up a bank account, applying for a TIE, etc. Without their help, I'm sure I would've been really lost because the paperwork is very intimidating to say the least. They made sure that everything was filled out properly and a lot of times, they even made appointments for us which was one less thing we had to do. They placed us in our schools based upon our preferences which was extremely helpful. I am teaching in a secondary school and I know that if I were placed in a primary school, I would not be as happy. Some of my closest friends in Spain are some that I met during orientation. There's also a Facebook page that allows everyone to post for various events or trips so that we can all stay connected which is very helpful and nice as well.

How can this program be improved?

I have zero complaints so far.

Default avatar
Sarah
Female
24 years old
Madrid, Spain
State University of New York- Cortland

Feedback of CIEE Teach in Spain (Regular) Program

8/10

I am currently teaching in Madrid, Spain with the CIEE Teach Abroad (regular) program. I would recommend CIEE for anyone looking to teach in Spain who seeks extra support and guidance with the somewhat difficult transition that comes with relocating your life abroad.
The online summer course and on-site orientation were especially helpful for me; I was given lots of useful information and was able to ask questions and get individual attention with the topics that were most concerning for me. I also enjoyed the opportunity to get to know other auxiliars so I could begin making connections and establishing friendships.
I did feel that the number of people in the program impacted CIEE's ability to provide enough assistance to each individual as might be required. There were about 200 of us, which was a huge increase from the previous year as I've been told, and it showed that CIEE was a bit overwhelmed when we all arrived on site. Things felt a bit chaotic and rushed.
If you do elect to teach in Spain through CIEE, expect help, support and guidance, but do not expect perfection and constant "hand-holding." There is a lot you will have to undertake and figure out on your own. CIEE will try to help you but they will not do it all for you.
Overall, I do not regret going through CIEE despite the high cost and inevitable obstacles. I have really appreciated all the services they have provided, and overall they have given me peace of mind through the most stressful moments which I consider to be priceless.
Best of luck to those of you considering teaching in Spain as your next adventure!

How can this program be improved?

I would recruit more past auxiliars to assist with the in-country orientation process. The 200+ people in our group felt like too much for the orientation leaders. They tried to give us individual attention and support, but ultimately there were just too many people. Also, things felt very rushed during the orientation. There was a lot of information we needed to know in not a lot of time. Lastly, the process of finding our own housing for the year was practically a nightmare. It is not possible for a program to find apartments for every person in their program, nor should they be expected to. Part of moving abroad means overcoming difficult obstacles. However, I could have used more support and guidance during the house hunting process.

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Cleo
Female
24 years old
Madrid, Spain
University of Delaware

Move abroad with CIEE!

10/10

I chose to teach abroad in Spain through CIEE's Four Week Immersion Program. This program is a combination of a Spanish homestay, Spanish classes, as well as your placement as a Language Assistant at a school in Madrid. CIEE made my experience moving abroad more enjoyable and certainly less stressful. They are the liaison between you and the Spanish government and they guide you through every process necessary to apply, move abroad and stay abroad. The support and encouragement from CIEE's staff has been both welcoming and consistent from the people I have been in contact with in the United States and in Spain. This is an excellent organization and would recommend CIEE to anyone looking to travel, work or study abroad.

Default avatar
Heather
Female
24 years old
Madrid, Spain
Colorado State University

Expensive Teach Abroad Program

6/10

As far as the program itself goes, I haven't had the best experience. They make it sound like they will assist you throughout the process, but I feel like what I really paid for was a few weeks in a hotel to meet friends and a couple of crash courses about legal stuff we had to do upon arrival which was super overwhelming.

Before I left I tried to get in touch with the office for over a week. I sent emails and left voicemails and I never heard back from them. I understand it is a busy time, but I felt like this was very unprofessional, especially since the information I was requesting was time sensitive for my visa application.

I basically figured everything out on my own and haven't heard from them expect to tell us about big news, which we all know about anyways. I don't think it was worth the money at all. You can do the exact same program through the government and it is 100% free. I just didn't know about it until after I was already here. I would suggest looking into that if you want to come teach here!

The actual job is great though! I work in a secondary school and I have enjoyed being with the kids a lot. I plan to be a teacher when I return to the US so I think the experience has been great for me. The placement of schools has little to do with CIEE though. I work with two other auxiliaries that came here through the government for free. They also really consider your wishes when they place you which is nice.

Default avatar
Nicole_33
Female
24 years old
United States
University of Kentucky

Teach Abroad - Save Your Money

5/10

I would suggest applying directly through the Ministry and finding a Facebook page for the Auxiliares who will be able to answer the questions that you have. I did the teach abroad program here in Spain and I wished that I had saved my money.

They were helpful with the visa application although that is something that you can easily figure out. They also offered a TESL course, which now that I am here seemed very unnecessary for the job (and you had to pay extra).

Once I got to Spain, I was shocked by the level of carelessness and lax that the coordinator in Spain had. In fact it was so bad that she could not answer most of the questions that people had and she gave out wrong information. At this point I am still waiting on documents from them that would have been faster had I just solicited the documents myself when I arrived.

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Andrew
Male
32 years old
San Francisco
Saint Joseph's College of Maine

CIEE Teach Abroad - Granada

9/10

There's no doubt that my experience with CIEE Teach Abroad was excellent. For someone that had never lived abroad before, the support of the staff (in particular for orientation) was fantastic and gave me the confidence that I needed to live abroad independently.

How can this program be improved?

Provide services for finding a shared apartment

Default avatar
mark.reese11
Male
24 years old
Jiujiang, China
University of Colorado- Boulder

Spain CIEE

9/10

For anyone who has never been to Spain before, CIEE is the perfect program. There variety of programs and there staff were really helpful through the visa process. Also, once we were in Spain they were knowledgeable and gave helpful and solid advice for how to complete the NIE (número de identidad) process, how to open a bank account, and how to find housing.

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amills153
Female
23 years old
Priego de Cordoba, Spain
Trinity Lutheran College

Priego de Cordob

9/10

I have had an awesome time living in Priego de Cordoba. The people at my school are so nice and willing to help me in any way possible. I only work 12 hours a week so I have a lot of time to travel and enjoy the local culture here in Spain. The biggest negative of my placement is that it is very hard to get anywhere since the bus routes are very long from my town.

Default avatar
jetsetter
Female
24 years old
Cadiz, Spain
Walsh College

Best year of my life!

9/10

I went through the 2-week immersion program, so my first few weeks in Spain were filled with orientation schedules, host family obligations and a general frenzy. Once finished with orientation, I had to sort out my rusty Spanish, my apartment, my roommates, my school, my transportation, and my routine – amidst on onslaught of cultural shocks and new sights. But with the foundation and the tools that CIEE provided me, I felt more prepared to face those challenges and knew that I had a support system to combat any issues I couldn't handle on my own. Over the course of the year, CIEE offered us private lesson opportunities, monthly newsletters, a frequently updated forum, and contests to keep us involved. Not only that, but my fellow CIEE participants were the people who became my closest friends in Spain. CIEE grouped us by region during orientation, so the friends that I made in the first couple of weeks were close by enough to visit and travel with.

On a day to day basis, I struggled with your typical abroad challenges, one of them being the language. The accent and colloquialisms in southern Spain are different than anywhere in the world, thus posing a major challenge to my application of the bit of Spanish that I came in with. I did learn Spanish (poco a poco) in the classroom, but I was supposed to speak only English to the kids, which definitely limited my speaking. I tended to stick to the same verbs and vocab when conversing, which meant that I didn't improve my skills as much as I hoped. If I had put more time and money into Spanish lessons, I might have seen more of a difference, but perhaps CIEE could have facilitated online Spanish classes or weekly lessons or webinar discussions about our setbacks with Spanish. They did a great job at the start of the year setting us up with Clic, host families, and Spanish-basics, but if they carried that throughout the year, my Spanish would have been better off.

I also could have benefited from a more organized CouchSurfer-like CIEE community. The Facebook forums were a good place to start, and often helpful with questions, but it would have been nice to have a more developed travel network of peers that were trustworthy and in the same boat. After all, we only worked 12 hours a week, so we had plenty of free time to travel. Each city/town could have a very specific CIEE travel guide (like the TripAdvisor .pdfs, but aimed at 20-something-year-olds) that highlighted the actual MUST-sees of places, 3-day itineraries, CIEE-beloved restaurants, favorite nightspots, best neighborhoods to visit, best tapas to try, what hostels to go to (if there are no CIEE hosts available), where to fly in/what transport to take, and budget finds. I would have loved that and definitely offered my own couch and tips for travelers visiting Cadiz!

All in all, by the end of the year, I was thriving. I had mastered enough Spanish to live and work in Spain. I appreciated and enjoyed every minute with my students, roommates, and any Spaniards I could befriend. I know the CIEE was a good choice for me, because I didn't have confidence going into the year, but with their help, I was able to make the most of my experience (so much so that I applied and was accepted for a second year of teaching in Spain!). I hope that anyone considering CIEE decides to go through them -- I wholeheartedly recommend them.

Default avatar
Sevilla-Girl
Female
24 years old
Sevilla, Spain
Other

CIEE - Save Your Money

6/10

The only reason you should sign up with CIEE to teach in Spain is if you want to be absolutely guaranteed to be assigned a school in Andalucia. Otherwise, you should save your money and apply directly through the government.

CIEE offers an orientation program that occurs two weeks before the school year starts. This orientation program is a waste of time if you have ever lived abroad before. Really, I learned basically nothing, and some of the information was completely inaccurate. In the end, the only thing I really gained from orientation was the friends that I made who were in my program.

After orientation, I barely ever heard from CIEE. They sent out one email each month, which contained some information, but most of it was useless. The only real times they sent out useful information was when they were addressing a concern that had been raised by several participants and had already been answered on a group Facebook page.

All in all, if you have never lived abroad before and are absolutely set on living in Andalucia, I guess that CIEE fits the bill. Otherwise, it is option that is not at all worth the expense.

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MollyC
Female
32 years old
New Orleans, LA
University of California- Berkeley

CIEE in Andalucia

8/10

CIEE is a great idea for the person who is looking for an abroad setting but needs a little bit of support if things get chaotic. CIEE works with the Junta de Educacion in Spain and reserves spots for "auxiliares de conversacion" to be hired in schools through CIEE, specifically in ANDALUCIA. When you pay CIEE's fee, you are paying for the staff that lives in Spain and runs the program and an orientation that introduces you to topics such as apartment hunting in Spain to different accents within the Andalucian area. One positive (or negative) thing about the orientation is you immediately are meeting fellow English speakers starting their year in Spain at the same time. You have a community, should you choose to be a part of it. Although you are able to contact CIEE at any point, there is NO DIFFERENCE in your job if you went through CIEE or bypassed it and went straight through the Junta (you would be saving a few grand but have a much more complicated and confusing application process). Since this was not my first time abroad, I really didn't need the ready support I essentially paid for, but for the first timers, it may prove to be worthwhile.

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CIEE offers paid teaching positions in Chile, China, Czech Republic, Dominican Republic, Morocco, South Korea, Spain, Thailand, and Vietnam, and volunteer programs in Spain, Portugal, and Senegal for university graduates looking to teach English abroad and immerse themselves in a foreign community.

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