Author Topic: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013  (Read 51390 times)

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dctinafri

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Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« on: May 05, 2011, 08:04:24 AM »
Hi!!

I know that many of you are excited and anxious about receiving your placements for this
coming year!!!
I'm actually applying to the program when it opens up in November.

Do any of you guys have any tips or advice for new applicants?
What was the most difficult/confusing part of the application?

Thanks!!!

ajnabiyya

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #1 on: May 05, 2011, 03:04:42 PM »
My advice would be to do the online application when it first comes out in November and submit it without any attachments, and then do the time consuming stuff (writing the statement of purpose, getting the letter of recommendation, etc.) later on when you have time. (Unless they make it mandatory to send in supporting documents within two weeks of applying - I think that at this point there are no consequences for submitting them later, as long as you make the deadline for the first round of assignments.) When you submit your online application (which is just some basic facts about yourself, really), they give you a number which indicates the order they will assign your region. You are much more likely to get a preferred region (especially if it doesn't have many spots) if your number is low.


I say all of this because I waited until December, when I had a vacation, to submit my online application because I needed the time to read the instructions carefully and write the statement of purpose. (I didn't realize I didn't really need the statement of purpose for awhile.) Then I ended up with a much higher profex number than I had expected (in the ballpark of 1450). I did eventually get my assigned region since I asked for Madrid and Madrid has a ton of spots, but I spent some anxious weeks wondering how things would turn out.


I'm sure that other people will have useful advice based on their own experiences. Good luck!

Rmarie

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #2 on: May 05, 2011, 03:27:50 PM »
I agree!  Sign up on Profex NOW and make your CV now.  You can also write you letter now (they usually don't read it  btw).
For me the most difficult part was navigating profex!!!  When I first applied there were no instructions in English.  I had a friend from Barcelona take a look and help me but even she was confused. 
All of your documents have to be no older than 3 months so do start gathering them yet. 
Good luck!
Rmarie <3

alpha.bro

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #3 on: May 05, 2011, 06:20:35 PM »
Not all of this advice is application specific, but I figure it's good to be prepared.


Aside from what the two previous posters mentioned (x1000 for ajnabiyya's advice):


1. Start saving money.
2. Learn Spanish.
3. Before you apply, get to know the different regions and the different cultures within spain.
4. Participating and reading forums like this one help you remain sane during the long waiting periods.
5. Be polite and courteous when communicating with various entities even though the process is frustrating. It can help you later on.


I'll add more later if I can think of anything.

Arreola

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #4 on: May 05, 2011, 08:10:59 PM »
download the manual and read through the portion on how to fill out the applicattion online, which can be confusing.

That way when it opens up it'll be a breeze and you can complete it quickly.

a lot of people are having issues with their background checks being dated too early (i.e. being dated in fall/winter 2010 when they have to get the visa in summer 2011) and the visa process requiring a fbi check from the last 3 months.

if you submit your online application in november you get a good inscrita number so when jan/feb comes around you can do the fbi portion part and submit your materials in feb. so that  you can get a placement in early march. I think the cutoff for the early placements was mid feb....i think.

BUT ABOVE EVERTYHING - Don't put anything off.  have your online app done in november and materials sent in by february.

i made the mistake of waiting to submit my online app in january, getting a high inscrita number, and THEN waiting to submit my materials until the end of march.

i'm still waiting and hoping i might get placement.

trebles

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #5 on: May 05, 2011, 09:02:05 PM »
I agree!  Sign up on Profex NOW and make your CV now.  You can also write you letter now (they usually don't read it  btw).
For me the most difficult part was navigating profex!!!  When I first applied there were no instructions in English.  I had a friend from Barcelona take a look and help me but even she was confused. 
All of your documents have to be no older than 3 months so do start gathering them yet. 
Good luck!

How do you know they dont read the letters?
carpe diem

dctinafri

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #6 on: May 05, 2011, 09:10:14 PM »
download the manual and read through the portion on how to fill out the applicattion online, which can be confusing.

That way when it opens up it'll be a breeze and you can complete it quickly.

a lot of people are having issues with their background checks being dated too early (i.e. being dated in fall/winter 2010 when they have to get the visa in summer 2011) and the visa process requiring a fbi check from the last 3 months.

if you submit your online application in november you get a good inscrita number so when jan/feb comes around you can do the fbi portion part and submit your materials in feb. so that  you can get a placement in early march. I think the cutoff for the early placements was mid feb....i think.

BUT ABOVE EVERTYHING - Don't put anything off.  have your online app done in november and materials sent in by february.

i made the mistake of waiting to submit my online app in january, getting a high inscrita number, and THEN waiting to submit my materials until the end of march.

i'm still waiting and hoping i might get placement.

Do you think its worth it to get the background check first ( maybe in october) and then send it in when i apply in November and then get a new one before i apply for the visa? Will that improve my chances of getting a lower number?

dctinafri

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #7 on: May 05, 2011, 09:14:23 PM »
I agree!  Sign up on Profex NOW and make your CV now.  You can also write you letter now (they usually don't read it  btw).
For me the most difficult part was navigating profex!!!  When I first applied there were no instructions in English.  I had a friend from Barcelona take a look and help me but even she was confused. 
All of your documents have to be no older than 3 months so do start gathering them yet. 
Good luck!

Great advice!!

I'll probably write the letter now. What do we have to write about exactly?

Arreola

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2011, 12:22:16 AM »
Do you think its worth it to get the background check first ( maybe in october) and then send it in when i apply in November and then get a new one before i apply for the visa? Will that improve my chances of getting a lower number?

you don't need a background check to get a number. in fact you don't really need any documents to get a number. you just need to fill out the online application which is a basic application where you put your education and work experience. once you submit that you get an inscrita number

you send the background check application with your hardcopies. you can send those in february and you'd still be considered for the early placements in march..


otherwise you'd have to pay for two background checks and thats just really unnecessary.

anyone have a different opinion on this?

WindyCity

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #9 on: May 06, 2011, 01:17:58 AM »
Obviously, apply early and organize all of your supplementary materials (especially the letter of recommendation, because that's the one you kinda have the least control over as to when it will get done) early, maybe even before you fill out the online app.  DEFINITELY read the instructions before and during the online app process, its a very cumbersome system. 
About the background check/medical certificate: just get them ASAP.  No matter what you'll have to get a new medical cert to be within the 3 month rule for applying for a visa and you need a copy of the background check to receive a placement so its probably best just to apply for one in November or December.   It would be annoying to have to get another one, but I know that mine, between fingerprints, postage and what I have to pay the FBI cost about $35.  So, you could wait until late December/ early January to send in your background check so its dated late enough, and then not get it back until early March (because they can take up to 12 weeks to process) and then not have a copy of the background check sent to your embassy in time for the first round of placements.  Or, you could just pay another $35 and have more peace of mind.  I know that people's budgets are tight, but in the long run, I think knowing that you could get a placement in mid March as opposed mid May or even later is worth the possibility of spending an extra $35.   Also, there seems to be so much confusion this year because the FBI background check requirement is new.  It could be that for next year they really standardize it to within 3 months of when you apply for a visa (as oppose to just being dated 2011 and you'd have to get one again anyway!)

alpha.bro

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #10 on: May 06, 2011, 12:32:22 PM »
How do you know they dont read the letters?

I'm not entirely sure they don't read the letters, but Rmarie's theory is probably true. I have a friend (male) who got a letter of recommendation from a teacher who referred to him as "she" the whole time. No one thought anything of it.

Perhaps when you get a regional placement they read them to see what your interests are and to place you, but logistically, they don't have enough time/people to read 3,000+ letters that essentially say the same thing. They probably get a once over, but I doubt that it is a critical component that determines whether you get in or not.

Rmarie

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #11 on: May 06, 2011, 11:44:46 PM »
sorry for the confusion!  I meant the letter of motivation that has to be in Spanish.  Although if they don't read that I doubt they pay much attention to the recommendation letters.  I know about them not really reading them (or at least they didn't a few years ago) because some people were very upset about it.  They spent a lot of time writing it (and delayed applying because of it) only to realize that it is "first come first serve".  I obviously wouldn't write "blah blah blah blah blah" BUT for sure don't spend a ton of time on it. 
Good idea to ask for the recommendation letter now!  I totally forgot about having to get on ppl about that. 
I didn't need an fbi check so I can't help with that.  The other docs you need for your visa (medical cert, etc) can wait until after you've been placed (mid April/May).
Rmarie <3

Packback

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #12 on: May 07, 2011, 04:23:08 AM »
As devil's advocate, I say play it all by ear...plans are for schemers.





...totally kidding.
I think there's at least a combined two thousand years' of wisdom in the above posts. 
I second everything.
The biggest advice I could give?

Don't be afraid.

Focus on your application timeframe and your goals, and everything will be fine.

dctinafri

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Re: Any Advice for applying for 2012-2013
« Reply #13 on: May 07, 2011, 05:11:15 AM »
Thanks for all the great advice.
I can't decide if i should write the letter of purpose in English or spanish :/