Meet María José Gelabert, Head of Studies at AmeriSpan’s Madrid Spanish school (Budget-Friendly).
What is your background?
After experimenting in different fields without satisfaction, one day due to circumstances of life, I was teaching Spanish in Milan. Three years later, I was studying Italian Philology at the Complutense University and again by chance before finishing my studies, I was subbing for a week at a language school teaching Spanish. A week lasted for ten years there until, the need for a change made me to move to ENFOREX to work for a summer. So far twelve summers (and autumns, winters and springs). In ENFOREX have gone where I participated in the production of manuals in Spanish and taught in different and sometimes complex specific courses. Again as the history repeated by chance, I was subbing as academic coordinator for four months which has been for seven years.
Do you travel abroad often?
Whenever it’s possible – particularly over long weekends.
Have you studied abroad?
I lived in Italy where I learnt Italian (self taught).
Which languages do you speak or have studied?
Spanish (mother tongue) , Italian (bilingual) & English.
How and why did you get into the Study Abroad market?
I’m not sure exactly when but I think it’s about 20 years ago. However the Spanish department consolidated at the end of the 90’s.
What is your job or function at the organization?
Presently, I’m head of studies of Spanish department at ENFOREX Madrid.
What do you enjoy the most about your job?
I would say the organising & coordinating the whole thing, where you have to solve the puzzles cause sometimes there are more pieces or chips than the board. This this position also gives you a broder perspective on every aspect because of the contact with the teachers & students on daily basis.
Was a person, group of people or organization instrumental in your success?
If I win an important award, during the speech I’ll mention the people & animals that have been instrumental in my success!
Tell us one of your biggest challenges in starting your organization.
Combining the competitiveness with quality, the company with the school, to be a mediator between the teachers and employees in order to be productive and avoid professional conflicts.
Can you tell us about your school’s philosophy, specialty and/or why you think it is special?
I think the most important part is to over come the difficulties & looking forward to achieve each goal.
Anything else? Perhaps some advice to potential participants, teachers, school owners or travelers to your country or city.
It is important to distinguish between client and student. As a teacher you should never see them as a client and a student in the class room should never behave as one. The concept of customer and product are alien to the teaching, maybe that is a hallmark of our team.
Learn more about AmeriSpan’s Madrid Spanish School (Budget-Friendly)