What dates do leaders need to be available?
If we are able to offer our traditional in-person programming, all leaders are required to attend Staff Training in Vermont in mid to late June prior to leading a program.
Programs run between two and six weeks in length, and you can find dates for specific programs here. The earliest Experiment summer programs depart from the US at the end of June, and the majority of programs conclude by early August.
Do leaders get to choose their program?
On the application, we ask you to list your three program preferences based on experience, language, program themes, and past Experiment program leadership. Your application gives us a very good idea of which program(s) you would be qualified to lead. We discuss program qualifications and preferences with applicants during interviews. Note that applicants may or may not be offered placement on one of their three preferred programs.
The bios of past leaders highlight people with very extensive international experience. Do I have to have lived abroad for multiple years to be considered for a leader position?
While the majority of our leaders have extensive experience abroad, we do occasionally hire leaders who have lived abroad for a short period of time or have significant cross-cultural and/or travel experience— especially if those individuals have other strong qualifications such as thematic expertise or extensive experience facilitating youth programs.
In addition, we sometimes assign leaders to countries where they don’t have direct in-country experience. For example, we might assign a leader to our South Africa program if they have extensive experience elsewhere in sub-Saharan Africa and expertise in the program theme.
Do I have to speak a foreign language to be considered for a leader position?
Given that each program set-up varies slightly, there are several programs (e.g., South Korea and The Netherlands) for which we don’t require our leaders to be fluent in the country’s language(s). Typically in these countries, our in-country partners provide a native guide 24/7 who can assist leaders with translation. However, for the majority of our programs, leaders do need to have a strong working proficiency of the language. For some of our programs (e.g., Argentina and France), it is critical that leaders are fluent in the language of the host country, and for these programs, we will often ask candidates to do a language check interview as part of the selection process.
Do you sponsor work visas for non-U.S. citizens?
Unfortunately, given the condensed timeline of our hiring process and the fact that the leader positions are short-term assignments, we are unable to support visa applications for potential candidates. All non-US candidates must first obtain a work visa and be able to provide proof of a work visa before we can consider your application.
I noticed that past leaders have led in countries that are not listed for upcoming summer. Do the countries change each year?
Our programs do change slightly from year to year. While many of our programs have run for years and continue to do so, we are constantly evaluating and updating our portfolio to refresh our current programs and to create innovative new programs. In this process, there are sometimes programs we stop running or place on hiatus while we improve them.
Do my references need to provide recommendation letters?
Please do not submit letters of recommendation with your application, the leader hiring team will contact references via email upon application submission.
I see that students have to pay an application fee and program tuition. Is there an application fee for leaders, or other costs I should be aware of?
Group leaders are professional employees of World Learning and not participants; therefore, there are no fees to apply for a leader position.
The only program-related expenses leaders are responsible for are their own personal elective expenses, having a current passport valid through January 2022, and obtaining immunizations if you choose to do so.
Are leaders responsible for paying for their travel?
In addition to providing leaders with a stipend for their work, The Experiment covers leaders’ program-related travel expenses, including:
- Domestic travel from your local airport to the Staff Training in Vermont, transportation from Staff Training to the domestic departure city prior to the program, and domestic travel from the return city to your local airport after the program. (*Only applicable for leaders within the contiguous US. The Experiment will reimburse leaders based outside of the contiguous US up to $300 each way for their international travel costs – flight, train, hotel, etc. – to help offset their travel expenses, for a total of up to $600);
- Meals and lodging during Staff Training;
- International flights to and from the program country;
- Transportation, lodging, meals, emergency travel medical insurance, and incidentals while on the program. (Leaders placed on inbound exchanges or programs with US based components – The Experiment’s USA program, Leadership Institute, World Learning Youth Programs – are covered under their own personal medical insurance, and are covered through worker’s compensation insurance); and
- Visa application fees (if a visa is required for entrance to your program country, The Experiment will assist you with the visa application process).
Where do leaders stay during Staff Training?
Staff Training is held on the World Learning campus in Brattleboro, Vermont. We provide leaders with lodging and meals. During Staff Training, leaders stay in the shared dormitories on the World Learning campus and should expect to share a room with at least one other leader.
Where do leaders stay during the programs? Do leaders stay with a host family like the students do?
During their Experiment program, leaders should expect to stay in the same lodging as the group, and this varies based on program. You could find yourself in a tent, a hostel, a dorm, a hotel, a yurt, etc., and will likely share a room with your co-leader. During the homestay portion of the program, leaders stay with host families (either individually or as a co-leader pair), and should expect to balance leader responsibilities with the host family experience.
Can I stay in-country after the program?
The program officially ends upon the group’s return to the United States. The group is doing lots of reentry processing and program wrap-up and is cherishing those last bonding experiences in the final hours of the program, even continuing through the flight back home — so it’s a very important time! Thus, we require all new leaders to accompany their group back to the United States. Return leaders may have the option of staying in-country after the program, and The Experiment team will share more information with return leaders about this benefit as they are hired.
Can I bring my own child or teenager with me on program?
You cannot your bring your child on program. Our policy is in place due to several factors including the responsibility of our in-country partners to make arrangements for hotels, transportation, etc. Additionally, we need our group leaders to be fully available to care for and support their 12-16 teenage Experimenters for the duration of the program.
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