SPAIN: Students earn international degrees
Nearly 50 Salesian schools offer international baccalaureate degrees
(MissionNewswire) Close to 50 Salesian schools in Spain offer international baccalaureate, dual baccalaureate or American dual baccalaureate degrees. Students focused on the American dual programs are immersing themselves in the English language. Everything they read, write, say, and hear is in the English language.
Courses currently in Salesian schools are offered online. This enables students to gain mastery of digital skills, learn time management and work independently. Students also achieve greater adaptability when working in diverse and multicultural environments.
Vicente Toro Romera, pedagogical director of the secondary school and baccalaureate program at Loyola Aranjuez Center, explained, “The dual American baccalaureate experience empowers students who want to expand their language proficiency through a serious, regulated program leading to an official degree. This program is allowing students to develop not only language skills but also digital and personal skills.”
One of the challenges for students who want to enter these programs is having the financial resources to do so. Francisco Álamo, director of the Salesians school in Sarrià, said, “We want to bring this to all students who could not access this type of study due to elevated costs. Young people with a curious, reflective and supportive student profile can access this bachelor’s degree at the lowest possible cost for their families, while maintaining the quality education associated with a Salesian schools.”
The international baccalaureate is a springboard to internationalization. Emilio García, pedagogical director of the Salesian high school and baccalaureate program at El Pilar School in Soto del Real, said, “Education is changing a lot. The American baccalaureate makes it easier to study at a university in the United States. It is a merit option in addition to scholarships at private universities in Spain or abroad. It is a good way to start obtaining a resume of official qualifications.”
The Salesians in Zaragoza agree. One Salesian said, “For the students it is a very motivating incentive. They improve their English language, become more autonomous in their studies, learn new study techniques, and at the end of their studies, get a double degree.”
Salesian missionaries have also been working for many years to provide educational and workforce development opportunities for poor youth and women in Spain through residential, technical, and vocational training programs.
Close to 32 percent of young Spanish workers under the age of 25 are unemployed and a growing number of them can’t afford to buy enough food to live. Poor youth with few employable skills struggle the most to find and retain stable employment. Women in Spain face inequality in the workforce. They earn up to 14% less than men and represent only 34.5% of those listed as the highest earners in Spain.
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Salesian Missions – Spain
World Bank – Spain