In early January, after an encouraging chat with a classmate, I made a major – and rather impulsive – life decision: I’m going back to Spain.
I applied for the Auxiliares de Conversación program run by the Spanish Ministry of Education. Every year, the ministry offers about 2500 English teaching positions to Canadian and American nationals with an undergraduate degree. The job is basically that of a teaching assistant. Technically it’s a scholarship, so you don’t get an actual work visa, but the wages are enough to live on (1000€/month in Madrid or 700€ everywhere else). For me it will be a chance to enjoy my year off before beginning my teaching degree. The best part is that I’ll finally get to be in one place with my boyfriend! While you can pick which comunidad autónoma (province) you’d like to be placed in, there’s no guarantee you’ll get your first pick. I did specify that I’d like to be in Granada with my boyfriend, but who knows whether they even look at people’s requests. Everywhere in Spain is pretty wonderful though, so not getting placed where you want to be isn’t a huge deal. In fact, this year, unlike years prior, all of the comunidades autónomas are available! Exciting!
Here, I will provide a regularly updated timeline of my experience with the program, beginning with the application process all the way through to placement and paperwork. Follow along and feel free to leave input and/or questions in the comments!
Note: If you have yet to apply, go through all the info on the Auxiliares website to find out exactly what you need. When you’re ready to apply, read the Profex Manual. If you follow this step by step, you should have no problem applying correctly. If you’re missing the letter of recommendation and/or transcripts, don’t worry. You can add them to your profile later. The most important part is completing the application ASAP in order to receive the lowest inscrita number possible and ensure a spot in the program.
Jan 12: Application completed. Inscrita #944. Required documents mailed to regional coordinator in Ottawa.
Jan 20: Notified by email of status change from Inscrita to Registrada. Changed to Admitida shortly thereafter.
April 5: The application period is now closed. Many renewals have already been placed. Shouldn’t be much longer for first years!
May 13: Received my placement in my first choice, Andalucía. Accepted.
May 19: Received an email from the program in Andalucía asking for copies of my passport. Sent.
May 25: Received my placement in Huétor Tájar, a pueblo about 40 minutes outside of Granada! Yay!!
Visit the official Auxiliares 2016-17 Facebook group for updates from other 2016-17 participants.