In this part of the website you will find all the information about the University, ç and specifics about the University's Teaching Internship. If you are interested in applying for a teaching position here at La Universidad de la Sierra, A.C., please take some time to read over the information and decide if the University is right for you.
ENGLISH IN MÉXICO (AND THE USAC)
Given the growing importance of English in international commerce as well as intergovernmental organizations, tourism, and technology, a competent level of English has grown to be a benefit, as well as a requirement, of all students hoping to incorporate themselves into the job market. In order to keep pace with the growing importance of the English language in Mexico, the USAC has made English a required course for all students entering the University. As such, the University has mandated all students to a minimum of 3 semesters of English, although in many cases they must exceed the minimum. The number of hours per week as well as the number of semesters depends on the course of study elected by the student. Regardless, the goal of the University is to provide every student with, at the very minimum, a basis in the grammatical structures of the language expressed through writing, reading, listening, and speaking. The USAC is dedicated to giving each student the English language tools necessary to be competitive, if not outstanding, in the current job market.
The Universidad de la Sierra, A.C. is an accredited nonprofit private institution that offers undergraduate, graduate, certificate and distance learning programs. At the undergraduate level, USAC offers programs in law, accounting, administration, tourism, information systems, computer science, engineering, and architecture. USAC offers graduate programs in teaching, administration, finances and law. USAC´s certificate programs include education, administration, and taxes.
Interns are expected to be present at the University (USAC) 40 hours per week. Teachers will be assigned a contact load of up to 20 hours per week, which may include regular University classes, community workshops, or corporate classes at local companies. The remaining hours will be used for planning classes, staffing the Foreign Languages Center, curriculum, resource, and text development, workshops, and other projects. Interns are required to participate in regular faculty meetings. Interns are required to teach one cycle (5 weeks) of Saturday classes every semester.
WHAT ARE THE STUDENTS LIKE?
Students who attend regular weekday USAC classes range in age from 18-26. Most are from families of modest incomes, and have part-time jobs in addition to full course loads. USAC students are active, gregarious and very social. Some students are highly motivated to learn English, while a substantial number view English as just another required course. Students who study in our distance-learning program tend to be older, work full-time, and are focused students. Individuals who attend the University's free language workshops are highly motivated to learn. Language workshops are composed of community members and well as USAC and local high school students.
WHAT IS THE TYPICAL CLASS SIZE?
English classes have a class enrollment of 15-20 students, however many upper-level classes may have only 5-10 students. Language workshops are limited to 40 students.
IS THERE AN ESTABLISHED CURRICULA?
Yes. In the past, classes used an anthology of materials compiled by the old coordinator and interns, but now, in agreement with other teachers and the Vicerector, we have a formalized curriculum based on a text book, which will allow and ensure that students can follow a coherent program and improve and develop accordingly. We use Headway 1 (for English I and II), Headway 2 (for English III and IV), Headway 3 (for English V and VI) and Tourism focused English books for upper levels.
CLASSES AT THE USAC
A typical class meets four times a week for one hour.
The University will provide the following:
Free internet access
- Complimentary furnished housing (shared with up to 2 other interns);
- Complimentary meals and snacks at the El Mirador restaurant and University cafeteria;
- Paid in bi-weekly payments (15th and 30th of each month)
- Contract completion bonus
- Stipend, reimbursements and bonuses are paid in pesos (abbreviated M.N. for Moneda Nacional).
Contract dates depend on the year. But the first semester normally runs from August until December and the second from January-June. Interns are usually contracted for the fall semester and may opt (pending departmental approval) for a second semester. If an intern does not stay for the full year (two semesters), a new intern will be recruited and hired as a replacement.
- Professionalism, cultural sensitivity, maturity, flexibility, a positive attitude and the ability to adapt to another culture;
- Native speaker of English;
- Earned Bachelor's Degree;
- Access to an e-mail account and fax machine during the application period;
- Basic level of Spanish.
THE INTERN HOUSE
The intern house is a three-bedroom (a room for each intern) house located about a 10 minute walk from the school and a 15 minute walk from the town's center or el jardín. The house has two bathrooms and one shower. It also has a fully functioning kitchen, a TV with cable, and a VCR.
Of course the experience here in Huauchinango depends on a lot of different factors. But to give those interested a taste of what it�s like to teach and live here in Huauchinango, the interns from 2004-2005 have written about their experiences. To access there accounts just click on the following links.
Huauchinango is a beautiful mountain community of approximately 40,000 inhabitants. It is located in the Sierra Norte of Puebla and is 100 miles northeast of Mexico City (3 hours via bus). Huauchinango is in many ways a typical small town in Mexico. It has a Saturday market, a central plaza, and young people fleeing every year looking for job opportunities or a better education. Huauchinango has one movie theater (which is currently closed), a town center, a few caf�s, a few restaurants, no museums, and very little to attract tourists. As so, there aren�t many, if any, foreigners aside from the teaching interns at the University present in Huauchinango at any one time.
Many interns really enjoy the quiet small town life here in Huauchinango while others elect to travel as much as possible during their free time. There are currently three bars in Huauchinango. Nightlife, like the number of bars and their quality, is varying from day to day and from week to week. But, there are always plenty of friendly people to meet and cultural events to be witnessed. Your impression of Huauchinango depends a lot on your attitude, point of view, and where you come from.