Before I left the U.S. I feared ACLE didn’t really exist. We move to Italy, live in a different city every week, stay with Italian families who feed us all our meals AND we get paid a salary in Euros?? In return for teaching English??
Fortunately the ACLE benefits are all legit or I’d be pan handling for airfare home in the Rome terminals right now. I have no savings and my parents have made it clear that they will not be bailing me out of any financial crises.
The other Jet Setters have tight purse strings as well. Courtney still shares an apartment with her boyfriend back in New York so every Euro she makes will go towards her rent, bills and college loans. Lynne doesnt where know where she will be working after her summer with ACLE so she is putting away money as she plans her next life move. Perrin has been saving for the past year to travel round-the-world, but she is still being careful so she can extend her journey for as long as possible.
It turns out that no matter how many college degrees we obtain, being born with an American tongue will always be our most internationally marketable skill. English pays. We could literally get by here spending zero dollars. Here is a breakdown of our budget:
Plane ticket: Out of your own pocket.
Orientation fee: £150. That covers a TOEFL certification (usually two to three times this cost!) and hotel and meals for the one week orientation.
Wages: Perrin and Sarah (newbie tutors): £225 per week. Lynn and Courtney (returning tutors): £255 per week. We get a £50 stipend every Friday but ACLE holds on to the remaing salary until the last day of tutoring. This is fine by me since I tend to spend any money in my possession.
Visa: As major changes have been made regarding European and Italian immigration laws, most Italian associations, including ACLE, are still unable to issue or assist applicants in obtaining long-term working visas. Instead we participate as “volunteers” and become members of ACLE, and they contribute money to us for our help. Works for me.
Transporation and Meals: ACLE covers both areas completely. They even give us extra Euros when we travel from place to place so we can buy our own food.