Teaching German for one and a half years in Mexico

Helena Kaasik – Mexico City, Mexico

Duration of project:  2 months + 1 year and 3 months

Type of Exchange:  Teaching internship


I made my internship in Mexico City through a project called Round the Globe, which was organized by AIESEC ITAM. I taught German to students from the University ITAM.


My internship was exactly in my field because I studied German philology. My internship lasted 2 months but after those 2 months I was offered a job in a language school and I stayed in Mexico 1,5 years. My main task was to teach German.


It was an amazing experience to work with students. Since that I really love teaching and working with people from different backgrounds. I also got a chance to visit local schools and see, how the educational system works in a big country like Mexico.


Going to Mexico was always one of my biggest dreams and I also had many friends there who were waiting for me there. AIESEC gave me an opportunity to fulfill one of my dreams, for what Im grateful until today. As a young person nowadays it is important to travel and collect experience in other countries and bring them back to Estonia.


In the beginning it was hard to understand how to move around in Mexico City because it is one of the biggest cities in the world but all my friends were so helpful and helped me to understand the local public transportation system. Also, I had to get used to it that everyone on the streets were starring at me because, let’s be honest, I as a ginger and fair skin didn’t look like a local at all. I lived by one of my best friends in the beginning and it was nice that they always took care of me and drove me around in the city. I made new friends quite easily and had quickly a busy social life.


There are so many beautiful things to remember but I think visits to Jose Cuervo tequila factory which was organised by AIESEC ITAM and seeing the monarch butterfly migration in Michoacan were definitely experiences which I will never forget. And of course, I have made friends for life, with whom I’m still in contact.


I think, that working in Mexico has given me an advantage on job market and also confidence that I can survive where ever I am in the world. I highly recommend students to take the same chance I did and go to another country and it is nice to put yourself at least once in your life out of your comfort zone. It will definitely give you the chance to get to know yourself better, learn something about other culture and get good work experience and AIESEC is the perfect exchange program for it.

Teaching English for a year in Colombia

Halja Pilvisto – Medellin, Colombia

Duration of project:  1 year

Type of Exchange:  Teaching internship


I did my internship in Medellin, Colombia. I worked in a software company as an English teacher.


I have studied psychology and I have also learned languages all my life. I had work experience as a teacher in Estonia. My internship integrated my knowledge of languages and psychology. The duration of my internship was 1 year. My main tasks were giving classes to different groups 3 times a day and 5 days a week. I learned to teach English, because I haven’t taught English before. I learned to teach English without using Estonian.


Working as a teacher in Colombia is definitely different from Estonia because of the cultural differences. Students expect you to be their friend, but at the same time you have to set the rules and keep a line between the job and personal relationships. Students expect you to be very playful and dynamic. Language classes in Estonia are definitely more formal.


I decided to go abroad to get a different perspective of the world. I had dreamt of going to South America for years. In Estonia I wouldn’t have worked as a language teacher. The most difficult thing was getting to waking up at 5 in the morning on work days. At the beginning it takes a lot of energy to get used to a different organization of every day life – getting a bank card, a mobile phone, figuring out the transport etc. In Colombia it’s very easy to make friends, because people are very friendly and helpful. However people are sometimes irresponsible – it’s not a big sin to cancel plans at the last minute, not showing up, giving empty promises. Not all people don’t behave that way, but if you don’t know the person very well you can’t take plans too seriously.


I will always remember the accident I had – I fell and broke my elbow and nose and had 3 surgeries. I had been in Colombia for 3 months, so it was quite hard to deal with the situation, but at the same time I had the opportunity to get to know the country and the culture more deeply.


This experience has taught me a lot. I stayed in Colombia and found another job at a university. Besides English I teach German and psychology. It was easy to find a job through AIESEC and I would definitely recommend the experience to everybody, because it helps you to become very independent and it helps you to learn a lot about yourself.