Pura Vida in Costa Rica: A very rewarding study abroad experience. Past Review

By (Packaging, University of Wisconsin - Stout) for

AIFS: San José - Universidad Veritas and Internship Program

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 2 weeks - 1 month

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

I think it was great. I worked really hard in my Spanish Class and I am glad I got the grade I received.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program


* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I loved the home stay. It was great because I was with 4 Costa Rican students and they always spoke in Spanish around me. Although it was hard to understand everything, it was great to chat with them. I also really liked my mom, she made great food. I felt very safe. It was a a decent walk, but once we were used to it, it was nice... and my room was comfortable. I could have used a dresser of some sort, but it all worked out.

* Food:

my food was great! there really was not much friend food and I liked that a lot. My host mom was a wonderful cook.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I loved white water rafting down the Pacuare river. Also, loved Manuel Antonio with my group and then I liked the biological reserve I went to with my ecology class. Also, really enjoyed Zip-lining.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:


If you could do it all over again would you choose the same program? Yes


* Money: How easily were you able to live on a student's budget?

(1 = not very easy/$200+ on food & personal expenses/week, 2.5 = $100/week, 5 = very easily/minimal cost)

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? I spent about 100 each week. less at the beginning and more at the end. They should budget the most money for food. It is really fun to go out to lunch and find fun places to go and try new foods. I mean I probably spent on average 6-8 dollars on food for lunch.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? none


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? The highest possible. Language Composition and Lit.
If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

Language acquisition improvement?

My advisor and other students as well as my house mom and my roommates who were also Costa Rican. It was GREAT! I mostly spoke english when I was with friends, but I enjoyed speaking Spanish as much as possible

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Local Students
  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Wonderful Adviser with great knowledge
  • Great classes!
  • Great Trips, more included than you may think in the price
* What could be improved?
  • It would be nice if I could have spent more time with my groups on the last weekend.


This is not a UW-Stout certified program

deleted-1550010829uwstout December 14, 2011