If you do not feel like reading the whole thing, you can just jump to the list below. But, since we never write our articles carelessly, we kindly ask you to take a look at the paragraphs before the list. Let’s learn something together. Feel free to always leave a comment on our articles regardless of the fact whether you agree or disagree with us.
Few years ago we gradually created sections on the website, in one of them we wrote that advice is the best experience, but that sometimes it comes too late. For that particular reason, having set it as our website’s goal, we worked hard to make sure the interested students can get the hold of information in a very easy and simple way, but also to recognize our objectivity and impartiality.
A lot of things change since 2011 when the website was launched. Until that year, the only sources were Work and travel forum, which still exists, as well as the unskillfully websites ran by the agencies themselves. There, you were able to find general information about the program and other services offered by the agencies. There were some attempts, probably by the students themselves, to make the program more popular through the visually appealing websites, but they lacked content and dedication, which unfortunately not many people can afford without having direct benefits from the program. These websites did not last longer than a year.
A lot of things changed since 2011 when Work and travel experience was launched. Although the first year was uneventful, we mainly focused on the students’ reactions, first feedback that the founders of the website received when they were on the program was positive and it was also the confirmation that we should continue developing the website.
Owing to the students’experiences, the concept on which this website is based on, we managed to build the image of the unavoidable factor in making a decision whether and how to participate in this program.
The agencies recognized that the students’ criticism of the employer, jobs, locations and of course, agencies themselves, affect the decision of those who have yet to make a decision whether to embark on this journey and those who have already participated in the program but are unsure whether they made a right decision. We noticed that during 2015 and 2016 the agencies significantly changed their attitude, ever so adjusting to the trends that the newer generations massively use- social media, detailed and interesting websites, content created by the participants themselves and etc. That is great news! The bad news is that simultaneously, with quality content creation, the quantity of useless information is exponentially growing, additionally supported by the students who contribute to the creation of the information landfill since they ask the already answered questions rather than look for the information themselves. In other words, useful information cannot find a way to the right student, and vice versa.
If you ask us, and you obviously do (this year we have been working more like Customer Support than on the website itself), take the following steps in order to get informed about the program:
- U.S. Embassy website– you can Google “Summer Work and Travel program American Embassy” since there are a lot of you from the Balkans, and open the first link that will take you to the U.S. Embassy website. That is the first and essential step for only one reason- on that page you can find a list of local agencies that have the license for this program. You can find one example on the following link.
- Work and Travel Experience website– on our website you can get informed about the students’ experiences with the agencies, employers and locations in the US, as well as the jobs they did. If you like a particular experience, in addition you can look for the particular job descriptions among the information on the website, and maybe confirm that you can see yourself doing that certain job. Advice is there to help you get informed about anything that can be useful before, during and after the program.
- Social media groups– there are a number of groups that are active and currently the most dynamic medium for exchanging informations. For example, these are the groups for Serbia, Croatia, and Macedonia. During the preseason groups are formed that usually have the name of the location, for example Cape Cod 2016, Block Island 2016 and others.
- Official websites of agencies– the moment you have in mind at least a slight idea about a job you would like to do or where you would like to go, look up which agencies can offer you that possibility. Besides the Facebook pages that you should follow due to the promotional prices in preseason, you can visit their websites, too.
- Youtube channels– a visual program representation through the agencies’ presentations, former participants’ videos, employer’s videos or the videos filmed in the employer’s facilities, training videos and so on.
- Forums- unfortunately, this is one of the categories that could not keep up with the social media popularity. You can bump into some active discussions like the one on forum ana.rs, however strict moderation that deletes the inappropriate comments, disorganization, bad categorization, as well as the inability to verify who is using the user accounts led to its integrity being compromised. If you really want to waste your time, visit the forums.
- Daily dose of a Work and Travel student– last but not least is one of the funniest pages dedicated to the Work and Travel program. They say humor is the intelligent people’s characteristic and the team behind this page is definitely intel…. humorous. Is there a better way to get informed about the program than through humor?
If you consider this article useful you can share it with your friends who are interested in the program!
This post is also available in: RS