Today, Apex Social, a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization promoting education, travel and cultural exchange, announced an expansion effort focused on matching American students and graduates trained in special education, occupational, physical or speech therapy with carefully vetted American host families for a professional gap year, where they are able to play a lead role in guiding the development of a child in a secure environment while exploring a new part of the country.
For over 12 years, Apex Social has matched European graduates in care professional fields such as education, therapy, and nursing with American and Australian host families. Now young American teachers and therapists can also benefit from this unique experiential learning job opportunity. The caregivers are fully integrated within their host families and the child's interdisciplinary education or therapy team, which allows them to learn about new concepts and methods, which they will be able to utilize in their future careers.
"I've learned so much by being able to live and work with a child who has special needs on a daily basis, versus as a therapist, when I'd only see a client for thirty minutes once a week," said Sabrina Kempkes, an Apex Social care professional from Germany currently living with a family in Los Angeles. "I've gained a greater understanding of how treatment can be incorporated into a child's everyday life that I can apply in my future career and I've gained an increased sense of empathy."
In addition, the Apex Social care professionals enjoy unmatched resources, including continuing education opportunities, ongoing support from the organization, and membership in the Apex Social support network of young educators, social workers, nurses and therapists worldwide. They will also have the ability to live in and explore another part of the country, with relocation, room and board, and salary included, and health insurance options available.
"We are excited to extend our program to American college students and graduates by offering them placements across the U.S., opening up an opportunity to get to know a different part of the country without the typical obstacles of relocating. In this insecure job market where teachers and therapists risk exposure to COVID-19 due to the number of people they interact with, we are excited to create an opportunity to have incredibly talented American care professionals join our program," said Susan Asay, CEO and founder of Apex Social.
For American special education teacher Meghan Trelegan, becoming a live-in caregiver has been a unique opportunity to fine tune her area of interest. "This experience has allowed me to grow both personally and professionally, and I finally get to check out living in California! Working within the home has given me a better understanding of the whole child, and collaborating with her amazing other therapists has helped me clarify what I want to specialize in moving forward."
About Apex Social
Apex Social is a 501(c)(3) non-profit promoting education, travel and cultural exchange, as well as a global community platform for participants from all our programs to connect, share and grow together. The A.P.EX. American Professional Exchange family of companies also includes Apex PROaupair, an international au pair agency designated by the US Department of State; Apex PROcare, a professional caregiver agency placing American caregivers with American families; and Apex Professional Exchange, which places caregivers in Australia.
For more information visit www.apexsocial.org/us.