North Central College - Naperville, IL

Christine Ross ’11 in Prague

While Christine Ross ’11 was student-teaching in the Czech Republic, she mentioned to her class that she wanted to visit Egypt and ride a camel. “Four of the 13 students in my class told me they had already been to Egypt and ridden camels,” she says. “And they’re in fourth grade.”

An elementary education major, Ross embraced her passion for internationalism by completing her student-teaching requirement at a British International School in Prague. She applied to a program called Educators Abroad Student Teaching (EAST) and chose the Czech Republic from more than 40 options.

“I love to travel,” says Ross, who had also studied in Scotland for a term. “I knew my freshman year that I wanted to student-teach abroad so I carefully planned my schedule. Many people don’t know that a program like this exists.”

The school day was similar to American schools and she taught in English, but measurements were in meters and liters. Some of her young pupils spoke three languages. Typically their parents are in the foreign service or employed by multinational companies.

When her classroom teacher became ill, Ross took over and gained valuable experience that she hopes will qualify her for an international teaching position. “Teachers in international schools are connected around the world,” she says. “But returning to Prague would be my first choice.”