Global Gateway opens up new teaching opportunities for students in Mexico

Last fall, Kaia Krejci became the first student placed in Mexico as part of the Global Gateway for Teachers program

Last fall, Kaia Krejci became the first student placed in Mexico as part of the Global Gateway for Teachers program. Krejci worked at La Palapa in Todos Santos, Mexico, where she taught English to Spanish native speakers. 

Krejci, a recent graduate who studied Spanish at the IU School of Education, decided to apply to the Global Gateway for Teachers program to challenge herself and expand her teaching knowledge with an international perspective. With programs in over 20 countries, she had her pick of destinations and chose Mexico so she could delve into the country’s culture and the education system of the U.S.’s southern neighbor. Despite having a completely different perception before visiting Mexico, instead of feeling homesick, Krejci gradually fell in love with the cultural differences, idiosyncrasies, and even habits unique to Mexico. 

“Now that I have been here for a while and understand what I am doing, I am in love with the country,” she said, adding she even got certified in teaching English as a second language, a tool that increases her ability to connect with students and educators in the U.S. and across Latin America.

Krejci had the dream of teaching, but never imagined doing it anywhere outside her home country. As she spent longer in Mexico, she realized there were more opportunities available to her than she imagined. As a native English speaker, she brought a perspective her students and colleagues did not have. The same way that they introduced her to Mexican language, culture, and traditions, she could share her own unique experiences and language, creating a reciprocal exchange of ideas that strengthened everyone. After spending eight weeks during her program in Mexico, Krejci realized that she liked the country more than just as a fleeting destination: “Learning and experiencing the education system in another country can change your perspective of who you want to be. …Being in Mexico has changed my outlook on what I want my future to be. I am planning to live in Mexico permanently.”

Read more about Krejci’s experiences at IU Global.