Who is Mondo Insieme: interview with Valeria Sessini

Who I am
Lluis Enric Mayans

wikipedia.org, lonelyplanet.com

Author and references

Mondo Insieme helps many young Spanish people to realize their dream of working, with the Work and Travel program, to study in American universities or to spend an au pair year in many countries around the world, including the United States.

But the best way to introduce you to Mondo Insieme is to let it be introduced by Valeria, who has been working in Mondo Insieme since 2011.

D. Hi Valeria, tell us a little bit about yourself.

“Hi Carlo, I am 33 years old and my life has always been characterized by travel and intercultural exchanges. I have had the opportunity to host numerous foreign students and to travel from the age of 14, every year, due to my great passion for languages ​​and other cultures. I graduated in Linguistic Mediation at the bachelor's degree and in International Communication as a specialist, interspersing my preparation with study experiences in the United Kingdom and Denmark. My dream, however, has always been to go to the United States and I was able to make it happen for the first time in 2010, thanks to Mondo Insieme. In fact, I participated in the Work and Travel program at the Grand Canyon National Park. "

Q. How long have you been working in Mondo Insieme and what do you do?

“Since 2011, I have been the Head of Work Programs and University Studies in the United States. Before starting working for Mondo Insieme, I did the same job in France for just under a year. Between France and the beginning of work here in Bologna I spent a few months of work and training in the United States, followed step by step by my Director. "

What is Mondo Insieme and how was it born?

“Mondo Insieme is an association born thanks to the great passion of my Director and his wife for cultural exchanges.

She is Danish and works in California at our American partner, ASSE International. Before moving to the United States, she created and managed another cultural exchange agency for 12 years, she speaks 6 languages!

My Director is Spanish, he also lives in the United States from where, obviously with frequent trips to Spain, he manages Mondo Insieme and assists students, if necessary, during their stay in the United States.

We are in fact the only Spanish association that boasts its own headquarters in the United States.

For us, realizing the dreams of young people is a real privilege and we try every day to do it in the best possible way, with enthusiasm and great attention. "

The American dream is always very strong among young Spaniards. What does Mondo propose together for them?

“The American dream is very strong, we confirm, and shows no signs of fading. Mondo Insieme has a varied offer, for all ages:
- proposes a semester or a school year in American high schools, both public and private, with the possibility of choosing the destination (State and school). Of course we have students all over the world, but 60% of students always opt for the USA;
- grants scholarships to attend university in the United States, thanks to the Campus USA program. The scholarships cover 70% of the costs of food, accommodation and studies for academic merits, and up to 100% for sporting merits. Among the sports we have tennis, football, basketball, volleyball, American football, swimming, athletics and many others. We also have guaranteed scholarships for those who want to attend an MBA (Master in Business Administration) and we make our skills available to the most ambitious students to apply to the most prestigious universities (Top Schools) and Community Colleges.
- allows Spanish university students to carry out a summer cultural work experience, in the tourism sector, thanks to the Work and Travel USA program. Students can choose the destination they prefer between Santa Monica in California, Ocean City in Maryland (very similar to our Rimini, Jesolo or Lignano Sabbia d'Oro) and Yellowstone National Park. It is a paid experience, ideal for improving English and opening up to the world of work, also because companies are now looking for cosmopolitan candidates;
- follows girls who wish to spend an au pair year, integrating into an American family, thanks to the Au Pair USA program. Flight, food, accommodation, salary and two weeks of vacation are paid by the host family, as well as the initial 5 days of Workshop in New York! The girls pay only a small fee to cover the costs of the administrative procedure;
- allows university students, recent graduates and young professionals who aspire to carry out a professional experience in one's field of study or work, internship programs, for a maximum of 12 months, and training programs, for a maximum of 18 months. We are pleased to activate these courses - naturally paid - in numerous sectors, from economics to engineering, from design to architecture, passing through information technology, science and law. We also have many possibilities in the hotel and catering sector, starred restaurant chains and luxury hotels are always looking for Spanish candidates! We are currently looking for young chefs for the prestigious Michael Mina group and its restaurants in Los Angeles, San Francisco, Boston and Waikiki, Hawaii;
- to cinema fans it presents an 8-week internship at the American Film Institute, a unique opportunity, a real springboard in a very competitive sector.
- Finally, from the age of 14, it presents a varied offer of language stays and study holidays, between the United States and Canada. Of course, these language courses are also ideal for adults! "

As we all know, the main problem for a foreigner who wants to work (legally) in the USA is the search for a sponsor. How can you help young Spanish people who want to have an experience in the United States?

“Our work is supported by our renowned American partners, ASSE International Student Exchange Programs, Aspire Worldwide and EurAupair Intercultural Child Care Programs, designated by the US Department of State since 1976 to sponsor the various programs. We will therefore provide students and young workers with the documents necessary for applying for a visa, as well as all useful information for the start of their experience.

All programs in the United States are managed very carefully by our partners, who work closely with government agencies. This is a great guarantee, both for students and for parents: they are never alone during the program, we are always ready to support them for any need, both from Spain and the United States. "

What are the American cities most chosen by the Spaniards for the programs you propose?

“It is very difficult to answer this question because we have students everywhere, including Hawaii, and every state has its own peculiarities, so every single corner of the United States deserves to be visited and discovered. The coasts are undoubtedly the most popular; California and Florida are very popular and New York is always New York! "

Thanks Valeria for your availability.

"Thanks to you Carlo!"

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