Four Months in Costa Rica Past Review

By (Philadelphia University) - abroad from 09/02/2017 to 12/23/2017 with

CEA CAPA Education Abroad: San Jose, Costa Rica

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I gained so much confidence in myself! I learned how to live on my own and adapt to a new place. I will take the lessons I learned and memories from my study abroad experience with me through the rest of my life!

Review Photos

CEA: San Jose, Costa Rica Photo

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.

Studying abroad in Costa Rica has given me so many opportunities academically. The most valuable was volunteering in a children's hospital where I gained a whole new perspective of the medical field!

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

All of the staff at CEA is so helpful especially when planning trips on the weekends! They gave me so much great advice to really make the most out of my time in Costa Rica.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

* Food:

I tried so many great foods in Costa Rica! Everything is so fresh with lots of fruits and veggies!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

* 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

I would absolutely study abroad in Costa Rica again if I had the chance. I learned so much about myself and the culture in Costa Rica during my time here. I was able to travel to two other countries as well as all over Costa Rica! I became so much better at Spanish which will help me in my future career!


* 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? $150
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? I would advise to keep track of your spending weekly. It is easy to spend more than you think so writing all your expenses down helps a lot!


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
How much did the program encourage you to use the language?

0 = No encouragement, 5 = frequent encouragement to use the language

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Intermediate
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Advanced
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? Spanish II
How many hours per day did you use the language?
Do you have any tips/advice on the best ways to practice the language for future study abroad participants? You are so immersed in the culture and language that you are forced to practice that-even at home! My host family does not speak any English so we always communicate in Spanish!

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
  • International Students
About how many local friends did you make that you will likely keep in touch with?

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Traveling on the weekends
  • Enhancing my Spanish skills
  • Meeting new people!
* What could be improved?
  • I wish my house was a little closer to school
  • More advocates to go abroad
  • Spanish classes during the whole time abroad
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I wish I knew how much I would learn and grow from this experience. It was definitely scary at first but just know that you will surprise yourself and do so well!

Reasons For Studying Abroad

To help future students find programs attended by like-minded individuals, please choose the profile that most closely represents you.
The Avid Adventurer
The wardrobe you packed was better suited for a semester of camping than club hopping. Outdoorsy, you might forgo a crazy night out for an early all-day adventure. You'd rather take in the rich culture of an old town than the metropolis of a modern city, but for you getting off the grid is ideal.