Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Latin educators pursue a master’s degree in the U.S. while experiencing teaching abroad


Press Release – Participate Learning – January 2024 – This 2024 could be the year for Belizean educators to achieve the goal of obtaining a master’s degree in U.S. universities while living the experience of teaching in North America, as others Latin educators have done, thanks to the Participate Learning program’s call for applications.
“Participate Learning is an initiative endorsed by the U.S. Department of State and, thanks to its agreement with U.S. universities, allows educators to apply for and complete their master’s degree while working as teachers outside their country, so they will return home not only with the experience lived in U.S. classrooms, but also with a university graduate degree,” said Ronald Ramirez, Participate Learning’s International Recruitment Manager for Latin America.
The graduate degrees are from Greensboro College which offers Master of Art in TESOL, Master of Elementary Education, Master of Special Education and Master of Kindergarten Education, or Elon University with the Master of Education in Innovation. These degrees are online with a duration of 12, 24 or – even the possibility of extending it to 36 months. Master´s degrees have a differentiated rate for Participate Learning teachers.
Manfredo de la Cruz is one of the educators who has already completed his master’s degree at Elon University and will soon return to his native Guatemala where he will be able to put into practice what he has learned, not only in the graduate program, which allowed him to learn about innovative aspects of study programs from around the world, but also the knowledge derived from five years of teaching in the United States, as well as the valuable international network of educators he has built as a result of this professional development trip.
In addition to the possibility of pursuing a degree, educators can also learn through courses, either those offered as part of the mandatory training on topics such as diversity, discrimination, equity, inclusion or mental health, or the possibility of opting for training courses financed by the school or provided by state universities or the county.
This is the case of Mariana Palma, a Chilean who has taken advantage of her time as a Participate Learning educator to train in strengthening support networks for the families of students who are learning a second language, and to delve into mechanisms to improve students’ reading and writing skills. This interest has allowed her to participate in conferences at the University of North Carolina, and to discuss best practices with other state and non-governmental entities, convinced that educators can become agents of change in their communities.
To fulfill this goal of living the experience of teaching in the United States and to be able to access these graduate degrees and training options, educators must apply for the cultural exchange program offered by Participate Learning, which provides the opportunity to teach in a U.S. school for a minimum of two years and a maximum of five years. In this way, they will be able to pursue their master’s degree while living the experience of being an educator in North America, beginning their graduate studies in their second year in the United States.
The selected teachers will teach core subjects and the culture of their country of origin in the states of North Carolina, South Carolina, or Virginia. They will receive a salary in dollars equivalent to that of an educator in the United States, medical coverage, airfare, visa assistance and orientation during their period of residence. The program even gives them the option to travel with their spouse and children under 18 years of age.
To participate in this cultural exchange, it is necessary to have a university degree in education equivalent to a four-year degree in the U.S., and at least two years of full-time teaching experience after the graduation date. In addition, the teacher must be currently working, have a valid driver’s license and have completed the COVID-19 vaccination program.
From the time the application is initiated until the offer of a position is made by the U.S. school district can take about three months. Once accepted, then the visa process begins, which can take an additional month. The registration is done via web at the following site: https://www.participatelearning.com/teach-in-the-usa/ . There is no fee to apply.

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