TORRANCE, Calif., Aug. 9, 2006 — Toyota is expanding its acclaimed Toyota International Teacher Program with a fully funded, 10-day study tour for 20 teachers to Costa Rica, March 8–20, 2007, Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., Inc. announced today.
Applications are currently being accepted from full-time secondary classroom teachers (grades 7-12) in Arizona, California, Florida, Iowa, Louisiana, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Texas and Wisconsin. Applications must be received by Oct. 9, 2006 and teachers must be American citizens at the time of application. Full details and applications are available online at www.iie.org/toyota.
“This program is designed to inspire secondary teachers of all subject areas to expand their curriculum and develop new ways of teaching,” said Michael Rouse, Toyota’s corporate manager of philanthropy and community affairs. “Teachers will observe and experience the diversity that Costa Rica has to offer through hands-on collaboration with Costa Rican community organizations, educators, and specialists.”
Toyota will cover all expenses associated with the trip, including transportation, meals, lodging and program materials. To help defray the cost of a teacher’s absence, Toyota also will provide $500 to be used at the discretion of the school, either to help pay for a substitute teacher or purchase materials related to implementing the Costa Rica experience in their classroom and school.
At the cultural and biological crossroads between North and South America, Costa Rica provides a rare opportunity to explore cultural and ecological diversity and to bring practical experiences back to the classroom. The Toyota International Teacher Program strives to expose teachers to the diversity of different cultures and ecosystems around the world in an effort to inspire the creative teaching of international, cultural, and environmental themes in U.S. schools.
Teachers who participate will experience this impressive diversity while gaining practical knowledge of the unique systems Costa Rica has developed to conserve its natural and cultural resources for future generations. The teachers will have the opportunity to explore unique biomes, connect with the people, participate in sustainability and biodiversity conversation projects and return with practical experiences to integrate into their curriculum.
The program is open to classroom teachers of all subjects and bilingual educators are encouraged to apply. While Spanish is the official language of Costa Rica, Spanish language ability is not a program requirement and teachers of all language level abilities will be considered.
This marks the 8th year of the Toyota International Teacher Program. It is administered by the Institute of International Education (IIE) in Washington, D.C. — a world leader in the exchange of people and ideas. Toyota’s first international program, a two-week cultural and educational study tour in Japan, continues this year as well, along with a trip for the first time to the Galapagos Islands. For more information, please visit www.iie.org/toyota.
In 2005, Toyota USA invested more than $40 million in philanthropic efforts. In addition to supporting education organizations such as IIE, Toyota partners with the National Center for Family Literacy; provides grants for science teachers through its TAPESTRY program; and distributes scholarships through Toyota Community Scholars, UNCF, Hispanic Scholarship Fund, the U.S. Marine Corps, National FFA, and the American Indian College Fund. For more information about Toyota’s community outreach efforts, visit www.toyota.com/community.
Toyota Motor Sales (TMS), U.S.A., Inc. is the marketing, sales, distribution and customer service arm of Toyota, Lexus and Scion in the United States, marketing products and services through a network of 1,427 Toyota, Lexus and Scion dealers in 49 states. Established in 1957, TMS and its subsidiaries also are involved in distribution logistics, motorsports, and research and development.