On the Teach and Study Program (TASP), I not only earned a Masters degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and gained competitive skills for the job market, but I also became a contributing member of Israeli society. With 15 other students in the program, TASP provides the necessary theoretical and practical training for teachers, as well as a support system for both tourists and new immigrants. Not only was TASP a framework in which an English speaker can excel, but I immensely enjoyed learning about all facets of linguistics, Israeli language policies, the history of the English language in Israel, and the English language itself.
The teaching internship at the Israeli public school was challenging, and I felt that for the first time in my life, I was doing what I was born to do –making a real difference in the world. I taught children to read; I introduced teenagers to Shakespeare. I was using English as a conduit to strengthen and sharpen young Israelis’ minds. Through my work, I became part of the school community; and through it, the Israeli community. I watched as my students’ learning affected all the individuals involved in their lives—teachers, parents, siblings, friends, and neighbors. I learned to appreciate how a school is, therefore, an incredibly important community, as well as a channel into the larger nation en masse.
TASP gave me the tools to pursue a career that allows me to have a nationwide influence on education.