I was wondering if anyone knew how hard/easy it is to get work in Italy with a TEFL certificate? I am also a US citizen so that is also another issue. If anyone has any advice that would be wonderful--I was thinking of taking the course in May or June.
If you're from outside the EU and don't have a working permit, forget about it. No institute will be interested in hiring you, as there's sufficient potential within EU which is much easier to get the paperwork in order for.
As almost everything here in Italy, it coud be hard or simple depending on circumstances. It is true that for a school is easier to hire a British teacher, or anyone coming from EU with the same qualification as yours. But it doesn't mean that is impossible. I am from Rome, and I personally have met lots of American people doing exactly what you'd like to do here. One suggestion: have a look at http://www.wantedinrome.dot for job vacancies and see if you can contact an institute here. At least, this is Rome, my hometown and the city I know best in my country.
Wish you good luck!
Carlo's right, it isn't wholly impossible. But, there's a legal side to it as well for the employer; in order to hire someone from outside Europe, he has to get a special exemption from the normal rules, for which he must show that the non-EU-citizen has a unique asset that cannot be found within the EU (what's more, he must also give proof of his trying to get someone European).
I'm not 100% sure this also goes for Italy, but it's the situation in the Netherlands, and European rather than national policy as far as I know.
Well, Italy is not the place to go if you don't like paperwork. But if you manage to get through, there is a huge demand of English native speakers and they usually get paid very well.
ehm... sorry... with "very well" I meant compared to other teachers in Italy, but it is usually far less than teachers in other European countries (i.e. England, Germany)