Fulbright Austria (the Austrian-American Educational Commission) manages the U.S. English Language Teaching Assistantship Program, which is funded by the Austrian Ministry of Education (Bundesministerium für Bildung). This program is a fine opportunity for U.S. teaching assistants, who not only gain classroom experience, but also serve as linguistic and cultural ambassadors of the United States in secondary schools throughout Austria.
US teaching assistants are expected to work independently in a wide variety of institutional settings all over Austria. They are assigned to different kinds of schools in communities large and small. They must have the capacity to negotiate cultural differences and to solve problems that arise on a day-to-day basis.
Each year, more than 140 college graduates from the United States teach in Austria under the auspices of the Austrian Federal Ministry of Education (BMB) Foreign Language Teaching Assistantship Program. The purpose of this program, which draws assistants not only from the English-speaking world but also from France, Italy, Russia, and Spain, is to bring talented and enthusiastic young people from abroad into the classrooms of secondary schools in communities large and small all over Austria. Ultimately, it is the job of these native speakers as teaching assistants to make learning a foreign language a lively cross-cultural encounter for their students.