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OSEA Job Announcement:  Program Assistant for 2013 Summer Field School
Download this announcement in pdf format
Posted August 25, 2013.

Job Opening in TESL / Teaching English Service Learning

Position: Program Coordinator, Instructor or Program Assistant
Title, responsibilities, and wage dependent upon qualifications and potential

Remuneration includes: Housing, food, stipend, and travel allotment during program, as well as a set fee for pre-program work.

Ideal Candidate:  Graduate student in Education, Anthropology, Linguistics, Spanish, Latin/American Studies, Cultural/Performance/Gender Studies or related fields

Work Activities are ideal to be developed into a MA Thesis or Ph.D. Dissertation

Period of Employment: 
On-site:  Full time during the period of the OSEA Program in SELT-TESL including a week before and after the program start and end dates
Off-site prior to summer program:  Quarter Time or less from time of hire in January through to program start date in May/June

Job Description:
Pre-Program: Create appropriate course readings and design coursework for the program; receive and reply to email inquiries; receive and evaluate applications.  Read the literature on experimental ethnography and create an ongoing conversation with the OSEA director on how to design TESL as experimental ethnography/community action research project. The assistant must have the motivation to read up on the most relevant ethnographic, linguistic and historical literature related to the Maya of Yucatán generally particularly the ethnography of Pisté and Chichén Itzá, as part of their preparation. Maintain email and telephone communication with prospective applicants and accepted participants, particularly to address questions and individual needs.  Work with OSEA director and staff in the development of appropriate pre-program information and activities, including maintaining open communication with participants prior to arrival.

Program activities:  Design the practical implementation and direct the practice of the Teaching English Service Learning Program that is conducted by OSEA during its summer field study abroad.  The Assistant must be able to work and develop a program within the intellectual and research agenda of experimental ethnography as developed by Quetzil Castañeda in the OSEA field school context (see ). 

Please review description of the SELT Teaching English Service Learning Program



Required Knowledge/Training:
Candidates may have backgrounds or training in a variety of academic fields and disciplines. We specifically are looking for persons with knowledge of one or more of bilingual education, ESL/TESL, Second Language Acquisition, cultural anthropology, linguistics, ethnography, cultural studies, sociology, Spanish and Iberian Studies, Hispanic Literatures, Spanish/Hispanic linguistics, History, Latin American Studies, Performance Studies, Gender, American Cultures studies. Ideal candidates will be able to combine different knowledge and skill sets from different fields to create a dynamic community action research program based in teaching English to children and adults in a Maya community.

Required Experience:
Candidates are required to have: fluency in speaking, reading and writing Spanish; teaching experience in general and experience teaching language in particular (any, but English and Spanish are ideal); experience, however limited, in conducting ethnographic research (from any disciplinary tradition) as well as an unambiguous desire to learn ethnographic methods as taught in the OSEA tradition; ability to manage, teach, and direct undergraduate students who are learning to teach English as a Second Language. Especially welcome is teaching experience in a variety of social, national, ethnic and institutional contexts as well as experience teaching a variety of age groups and educational levels from children and undergrads to adults who have not completed high school.  

Required Skills:
Fluency in speaking, reading and writing Spanish. The candidate should have experience in office or administrative work that has provided them with a variety of skills, such as multi-tasking, punctual completion of assignments, writing/proofreading texts, manage email correspondence including archiving, being able to create and maintain a budget, organize files, develop file system, manage receipts, make professional quality scans of documents, competency to troubleshoot computer and printer problems, and a developed knowledge of digital technologies for video and audio documentation. Candidate should be able to demonstrate ability to effectively use or the desire and competency to learn at advanced levels:  Excel, Acrobat Professional, Word, Dreamweaver, SIL Fieldworks, ACDSee Photomanager, and Adobe or Pinnacle video editing programs.  In addition, the candidate must comfortable with both MACs and PCs in order to effectively work across MAC and Windows OS; person must be willing to learn to how to teach participants how to convert data files between MAC and PC in situations where standard programs are not available in one or another platform.

Program Coordinator / Assistant must be able to demonstrate the ability to adapt to new situations, flexibility in dealing with changing circumstances, and ability to collaborate effectively with OSEA director and staff.

Candidates must demonstrate a commitment to learning Yucatec Maya and to develop a proficient knowledge of common everyday Maya culture or diagnostically "maya" cultural things -- talk about spirits, pyramids, rituals, food, clothing, language, music, dance, etc.. This position requires the commitment to conduct ethnography in the course and on the processes of teaching English as second language.  OSEA recognizes that there are a multitude of valid and legitimate styles, traditions, and philosophical-theoretical approaches of and to ethnography.  It is important for candidates to learn about the OSEA approach to ethnography which is grounded in the interpretivist philosophical tradition and builds directly on symbolic interactionism, ethnomethodology, and phenomenological oriented fieldwork.  The selected candidate will work closely with the OSEA director to develop a TESL program that fits the agenda and principles of experimental ethnography as developed by Castañeda (see publications )

Employer:  OSEA The Open School of Ethnography and Anthropology
OSEA is an independent, non-degree school that offers training programs in interdisciplinary anthropology, cultural studies, ethnography, education, and community action research.  OSEA has partnership with the UAdY, Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán through which student participants gain US accepted course credits that can be transferred to their home institution. OSEA specializes in field study abroad programs that can include home-stay cultural and linguistic immersion for ethnography students or posada lodging with meals taken with families for students in SELT.  

As part of its outreach and community exchange, OSEA created SELT – The School of Experimental Language Training.  SELT offers an 8 credit course for students to gain hands-on interactive experience teaching English as a second language to different age groups in a Maya community of Yucatán.  Please visit the osea website for more information

Please send a current vita, three letters of recommendation, and a cover letter explaining your interest in and qualifications for the position, including discussion of any relevant experiences and how this position fits into your larger professional goals and personal agenda.  If available please send any relevant publications, research prospectus/proposals, drafts of thesis/dissertation chapters, or other audio/visual products or documentation that demonstrates your experience, expertise or qualifications. Materials that must be returned will be at the cost of the applicant and should be sent with instructions for such. Follow up interviews will be scheduled and conducted via skype video.  Please send hard copies to Quetzil Castañeda, 2244 Martha Street, Bloomington IN 47408.  In addition, an electronic version of your cover letter and vita can be sent to

  • Summer 2013 Program dates are to be announced.
  • Applicants must be available during June and July.
  • Applications are being accepted and reviewed upon receipt and video interviews scheduled.
  • A final determination will be made no later than early January 2012