Spring Break in Costa Rica ¡Pura Vida! April 11, 2017

By (Texas A&M University - College Station) - abroad from 03/11/2017 to 03/19/2017 with

Sol Education Abroad- Heredia - Universidad Latina de Costa Rica

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
I got more confident with speaking Spanish. I'm not afraid to mess up or say something wrong. I learned so much about Costa Rican culture, and I got to meet some really wonderful people. I got unique experiences that I will value forever.

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.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

The administrators for Sol Education Abroad in Costa Rica could not have been any nicer! They were all so helpful and enthusiastic.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

I had the sweetest host family! They really helped me get more comfortable speaking Spanish. My mama tica always had plenty of food and coffee prepared for us. She did our laundry and made our beds. They even took us to a dance class and had a family barbecue for us on the first night!

* Food:

The food in Costa Rica is delicious! Be prepared to eat lots of Gallo Pinto (rice and beans). The coffee is the best!!

* 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

Finances

* 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)

Most of your meals are already included or cooked by your host family.

Not including program expenses, about how much money did you spend on food and other expenses each week? $100

Language

* 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

Our host families only spoke Spanish and most of the tour guides would speak in Spanish.

How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? Beginner
How would you rate your language skills at the end of the program? Intermediate
What was the highest level language course you had completed prior to departure? SPAN 201
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? Practice speaking Spanish around your house and to your friends. You need practice outside of the classroom.

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
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?
  • Host family
  • Excursions (white water rafting)
  • Food
* What could be improved?
  • Spanish Workshop
  • Go to the beach
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? The Costa Ricans wear jeans everyday.

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 Nearly Native or Trail Blazer
Craving the most authentic experience possible, perhaps you lived with a host family or really got in good with the locals. You may have felt confined by your program requirements and group excursions. Instead, you'd have preferred to plan your own trips, even skipping class to conduct your own 'field work.'