by Ann Abbott
I recently received a message from a former student who applied to the "English Opens Doors" program in Chile and asked for a letter of recommendation.
"I'm emailing you to let you know that I applied for the English Opens Doors Program. It's a government run volunteer program in Chile were they place you in a classroom (5th-12th grade) with another Chilean teacher and you help teach the speaking/listening part of English."
I was delighted to write her letter because she was a model student and person. (As an aside, you might be interested to see what I ask all my students to provide me when they ask for a letter. I didn't ask this student, though, because the form was short and the details of her work with me were fresh in my mind.) Furthermore, one of my former students went on this same program several years ago: Jason Flynn.
I quickly submitted her letter and received this message from her in response:
"I will definitely let you know if I get accepted. And if you have other students that are looking into something similar this program is nice because even though you are a "volunteer" they provide health care, housing, meals (you can chose to be with a host family) and a $100 stipend per month. So it is not like other programs were you pay a high fee for them to place you."I hope many students will look into this opportunity. My students who have done community service learning are especially well suited to this.