Past Review

By (Nursing., University of Northern Colorado) for

ISA Study Abroad in Heredia, Costa Rica

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It was so worthwhile! I learned so much about myself and became so much more independent! I realized just how much I can accomplish on my own and I realized so many things that I have taken advantage of here in the US!It opened my eyes to a whole new World outside of the US and made me change my views on a lot of things!

Personal Information

If you took classes at multiple universities, list those universities here: Universidad Interamericana
The term and year this program took place: Fall 2009

Review Your Program

* Overall educational experience

Academic rigor, intensity, resources, etc.

I learned more practical stuff in the real life experience of a study abroad like speaking Spanish and learning about the culture rather than in the classroom

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Our ISA directors in Costa Rica were AMAZING! They were so helpful with anything and everything we wanted and they were super friendly and always available!

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

Me and my best friend, Leah, who came with me got to be roommates and we lived with a great family! Our family consisted of a single, stay-at-home mom who cooked and cleaned and took care of us and our 2 older host brothers lived with us as well. We had a sister as well but she was married and didn't live at home. Leah and I both got our own rooms and we shared a bathroom. It was great! We lived close to downtown Heredia which was nice because we were close to everything and we had to walk about a 20-25 minute walk to school. <br /><br /> It was a nice, comfy home

* Food:

The food was awesome! And she gave us so much food! I was always so full! I miss having my delicious meals ready for me!

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

It was just the best experience of my life!

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

Costa Rica is fairly safe but of course it's not as safe as the US but as long as you are smart about it and use normal safety precautions like not walking around at night and keeping an eye on your stuff you should be fine. I didn't have any problems.

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? On an average week I spent about $100 on everything (this included lunch and entertainment) but on weeks that I would travel or buy lots of souvenirs this amount might be even more.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? On the ISA included excursions they don't include a lot of the activities like zip-lining and everything and some of the meals aren't included as well so I ended up having to pay for those. My advice is to just watch what you are spending because you don't want to run out of money before the end of the program but at the same time don't let money stop you from doing things because this may be the only time you ever get to be in this country so you need to live it up while you still can! You can get a job when you get back to the US! ;)


How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Intermediate
Language acquisition improvement?

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Host Family
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Just do it! It is the best experience you will ever have! It is so much fun and you get to experience so many new things!Don't let anything hold you back!