Living the Pura Vida was life-changing. Past Review

By (Spanish Language and Literature., Truman State University) for

College Consortium for International Studies (CCIS): San Jose - Universidad Veritas

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
Yes, very much so.

Personal Information

How much international exposure did you have prior to this program? 0-2 weeks

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

I did not know that I had to test in to my Spanish class. At University of Wisconsin-Platteville where I go to school, education abroad students have to fill out a course sheet for what classes they're going to take abroad. I did that, but it didn't matter. I had to test in to my Spanish class (which I tested into a 2000 level class rather than a 3000). Also, my elective course wasn't offered. So I took neither of the courses I thought I was going to take. It was an extremely stressful situation.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

They were helpful if they could be. With courses and not having my elective course offered and not testing into the Spanish course I signed up for, they couldn't offer any help except to tell me to speak with my advisers from UW-Platteville.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I am so thankful for my family. Without them, I wouldn't have learned much Spanish while in Costa Rica. I was sad not to have a roommate, as it made traveling in town very difficult. However, my host family/living situation was the best part of my entire trip.

* Food:

My mama tica cooked the best food!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

Dance class! Also, the trip to Puerto Viejo was fabulous.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

In San Jose, you just always have to know where you are. Know your surroundings. Avoid looking like a tourist.

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 around $500.00 for 5 weeks.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? Be ready to spend $100-$200 on extra trips that you might want to take.


* 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? A low 4000-level course.
Language acquisition improvement?

I spoke Spanish with my host mother and host sister. With fellow students, I always spoke English. This was a very big set back. I wasn't happy to speak so much English, but I wanted to spend time with fellow students.

If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans


That's wonderful! We are happy to hear that you had an amazing study abroad experience! CCIS

CCIS April 24, 2014