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Team4Tech Summer 2019 Internship in Costa Rica

Team4Tech works to advance the quality of education in developing countries by connecting technology volunteers and solutions with high impact non-profit organizations. We guide volunteer interns through four to six weeks of preparation based in human-centered design principles, followed by three to four weeks of in-country immersive service learning that leverages their skills and passions to make a difference in education. Over the past five years, Team4Tech has implemented over 50 projects with more than 400 volunteers from 15 leading tech companies and universities, reaching 45,000 students and teachers.

Project Description

In Costa Rica, Team4Tech is partnering with TeachUnited, a US-based non-profit organization that works to advance teaching and learning in rural schools via teacher training, mobile technology and personalized learning.

Teach United is focused on enhancing education at schools in the rainforest region of Sarapiqui. This area of Costa Rica primarily serves students of families working in pineapple and banana plantations, many of them Nicaraguan immigrants.

During the summer of 2019, 10 volunteer interns from Middlebury College provided technology support and training for TeachUNITED (TU) teacher trainers, participating teachers, and community partners. They delivered 4 workshops, updated the software on 100 tablets, trained the TU staff on new hardware and software, and filmed and produced a marketing video to promote TU.

In early 2019, TeachUNITED will begin working with eight new partner schools, 10 virtual rural schools, and up to 100 teachers. The goal for this year’s university project is for up to 10 student volunteers to provide research, training, and support to prepare TeachUNITED’s new partner schools to integrate technology into the curriculum. Specific needs include: researching and curating a list of free and open digital resources; setting up the schools’ RACHEL (offline) servers with these and other resources; creating training materials (in Spanish) and leading teacher trainings on the use of open resources; and assisting teachers with lesson integration.

TeachUNITED has also received a grant to provide technology training to the government’s District Education Officers. Team4Tech volunteer interns will assist TU’s professional coaches prepare and deliver the workshops for this training. In addition, the interns will have the opportunity to meet, collaborate with, and learn from student teachers from the Universidad Nacional who have been placed in the rural schools.

Volunteer interns will be immersed in the local culture and environment at the Chilamate Rainforest Eco-Retreat. While at the eco-retreat, interns will have an opportunity to participate in cultural and adventure activities like rainforest and agricultural tours.

Volunteer Skills & Experience
Must have:
  • Interest or experience designing and/or conducting technical training, with adults or youth
  • Interest in working with and training teachers, with some secondary work with youth learners
  • Interest or experience working in low resource contexts, particularly schools
  • Spanish language proficiency
Nice to have:
  • Familiarity with project-based learning techniques and best practices
  • Familiarity with education and teaching best practices

Preliminary Project Timeline:
  • July 2019 – Virtual training (six hours per week)
  • August 1, 2019 – Arrive in Costa Rica
  • August 2-3, 2019 – In-Country Orientation
  • August 4-28, 2019 – Deliver teacher training workshops, provide in-classroom support
  • August 29, 2019 – Program wrap-up
  • August 30, 2019 – Depart Costa Rica

This program is unpaid, and the Center for Careers and Internships is subsidizing the cost of participating. Scholarships may be available to cover all or a portion of your travel to and from Costa Rica. If you are offered and accept this internship, you will be required to complete funded internship paperwork.