The American School in SwitzerlandThe American School in Switzerland

Summer Employment FAQ

Dear Summer Programs Candidates,

Thank you for your interest in the TASIS Summer Program in Lugano, Switzerland. We seek to hire the most talented teachers and counselors for our summer programs. As a testament to the positive experience of working at TASIS, many of our teachers and counselors return year after year. Each year new staff members bring fresh vision and talent to the program. The summer is fast-paced and exhilarating. The week consists of morning classes, afternoon sports, evening activities, concerts, performances, tournaments, and workshops. Weekends are spent traveling to nearby cities and natural wonders. Visiting the cities of Luzern, Milan, or Verona, or exploring the outdoors while rafting, caving, and canyoning are a few of our regular offerings for middle and high school students. A smaller group of students and staff will travel even farther for overnight stays in Venice, Florence, and Rome. Staff members celebrate a long week with a staff meeting and social event.

The work is exciting and rewarding, but it is not for everyone. All teachers and counselors are expected to work seven days a week and perform duties around campus and in the dorm. There is little personal time available and only one weekend off per summer. Living arrangements are most often shared apartments with other staff, or a dorm room. In short, it’s definitely a job and not a vacation! Please consider whether this is the kind of experience you are looking for before submitting an application. Below are some important requirements for all candidates:

Teachers
  • Must have certification or experience in the subject they intend to teach. Note that experience teaching English to native speakers does not qualify a teacher to teach EAL.
  • Must be willing to live and work in the dorm.
Counselors
  • Must be at least 20 years of age
  • Must be willing to live and work in the dorm
  • Must have experience working with children
  • A willingness to become lifeguard certified, the ability to drive stick-shift vehicles, and proficiency in another language will help your application, but are not required. Russian and Japanese speakers in particular are encouraged to apply.

There are likely to be openings in the following areas for 2021:

  • Counselor
  • IB Preparation Teacher
  • Art Teacher
  • Math Skills Teacher
  • Lean Startup Masterclass Teacher
  • EAL Teacher
  • STEAM Teacher
  • Music Teacher
  • Musical Theater Teacher
  • French Teacher
  • Digital Photography Teacher

Below is a list of frequently asked questions. If you have additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact me at summer.director@tasis.ch

Warm Regards,
Marc-Pierre Jansen
TASIS Summer Director

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

1. What kind of compensation does TASIS offer?

  • A reimbursement of 1400–1500 Swiss Francs to defray the cost of airfare for North American residents (exact amount depends on departure city), a reimbursement of up to 500 Swiss Francs for European residents
  • Shared accommodations and free room and board 
  • All expenses paid on any trip for which you are a chaperon
  • The starting salary for two-sessions after-taxes is 2600 Swiss Francs for counselors, and 4000 Swiss Francs for teachers

2. What is the deadline to submit an employment application? 

There is no formal deadline. The hiring process continues until all positions are filled. Hiring extends from January through June 1. The sooner your application arrives, the better.

3. What are the program dates?

Arrival June 21, 2021 and departure on August 15 or 16

4. Is it possible to work only one session?

Usually, no, it is expensive and sometimes disruptive to change personnel in the middle of the summer. However, teachers of courses offered only one session (e.g. Cucina Italiana, Fashion and Textile Design, Math Skills) will have the option of working for just that session.

3. How are the ages divided?

Our students are divided into the following age groups: 4–6 CDE Minnows, 7–10 Châteaux Des Enfants (CDE), 11–13 Middle School Program (MSP), 14–18 TASIS Summer Program (TSP) 

5. I only want to work with one age group. Is that possible? 

Staff members will primarily be assigned to one age group, but will likely work with other age groups during other portions of the day. For example, you might teach in the morning to middle school students but be involved in leading a Tennis club with high school students in the afternoon. 

6. I want to work at TASIS but have a conflict with the start or end dates. Should I still submit an application?

It is unlikely that we will be able to accommodate you if you cannot be present for the entire program.

7. I am married and/or have children. Is it possible for my spouse and/or children to join me this summer?

It is possible but sometimes difficult to arrange. Housing is quite limited in the summer, and there are only a small number of apartments that can accommodate couples or families.

8. Who is eligible to work in Switzerland?

Pre-pandemic, we readily obtained work permits for citizens of the United States, Canada, Japan, New Zealand and other non-EU countries. However, we are currently only considering applicants with EU passports. 

9. I am NOT a citizen of an EU country, can I still apply?

Yes, please consider applying even if you are not an EU citizen. Restrictions are always changing, and they could change in your favor.  

8. Where should I send my completed application?

Please submit your application for employment through the Summer Employment Application Form.

10. Can my references write a letter instead of filling out the online reference form?

No, your references must use the Summer Reference for Employment Form. In addition, they may also attach a letter of recommendation to the online form.

11. I have submitted my application. When can I expect to be contacted for an interview?

Not all applicants will be contacted for an interview. You may email the director to know the status of your candidacy at summer.director@tasis.ch.

12. I had my interview weeks ago, and I still haven’t heard anything. Does this mean I probably won’t get a job offer?

No, it does not. This is especially true for candidates who are interviewed in January; they may have to wait several weeks for a decision. The director may need to interview additional candidates to ensure that there is an appropriate male/female staff ratio, number of drivers, or number of lifeguards. Email summer.director@tasis.ch to know what your status is.

13. I am vegan or vegetarian. Will I be able to find something at TASIS that I can eat?

There is at least one vegetarian alternative served at every meal in addition to a regular salad bar. Vegans will have much more difficulty, and should therefore consider whether or not TASIS is right for them.

15. I am interested in teaching at TASIS, but it does not appear that there is an opening this year in my subject area. Should I still apply?

Yes, you should. Staffing is often in flux, new positions sometimes become available and are posted as a job listing at the appropriate time. If you already have your application in, you have an advantage in securing the position.

17. What is the difference between a teaching position and a counseling position?

Teachers and counselors share a number of responsibilities. Both chaperone weekend trips, cover afternoon sports, and supervise the dormitories. Teachers are responsible for preparing and teaching classes in their subject areas that run most days from morning to early afternoons. Counselors are responsible for afternoons through bedtime, and also serve as advisors and meet with a small group of students each day. While the students are in class, counselors run errands and prepare for events in the evening.

Teachers can be as young as 23 or as old as 70. TSP counselors tend to be entering their final year of university, are recent college graduates, or young teachers in their early to late-20s.

18. Will there be any changes in the program as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic?

The pandemic has imposed restrictions in terms of campus protocols and off-campus travel. However we do hope to visit as much of Switzerland and the local area as safely as possible.