The Trip of A LIFETIME! :) Past Review

By (Interdiscliplinary Studies, Stephen F. Austin State University) for

Stephen F. Austin State University (SFA): Traveling - Student Teachers in Costa Rica

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
My experience abrad impacted my cultural awareness becuase I was able to make connections between the Costa Rican Culture and my culture. I was able to identify things that we had in common and things that were different. I was able to accept those differences and provide an experience that I will be able to carry over in my classroom. This experience gave me insight to some of the most intresting people and most beautiful places I have ever been.

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.

The workload was very manageable. The teacher allowed us time to read and conducted classes each night. Each article provided us with good background knowledge for events that were happening during the day. I think we had a great cross culture learning experience. The teacher really allowed us to experience as much as we could while in the country.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Our professor was very knowledgeable about the host country. Everywhere that we stayed he had experienced before. He also knew the people very well and knew the best places to stay. I was very impressed with his knowledge and his ability to include us in many of his experiences to be part of our own.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

The housing arrangements were wonderful. Each hotel provided us with breakfast, a comfortable envrionment, and each host provided us with the best up-keep.

* Food:

I suggest that each student try the Cosados, they are amazing! Also there are rice and beans for breakfast, lunch, and dinner.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

I had a blast on this trip! This program went above and beyond my expectations. From swimming in the waterfall, experiencing the hot springs, watching a volcano peer from the clouds, zip lining, latin dancing, and trying some of the best rice and beans of my life the trip was an overall success. I learned so much as a teacher and learned a ton about culture. I was able to really make connections between my culture and the Costa Rican culture. I suggest to anyone if they get the chance to go on the study abroad trip.

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

The safety of your host city was very safe. There were a few time while in the heart of the city, where it was the typical city life. The local healthcare was very weak compared to what we were used to at home; however, we didn't have to deal with any of those issues.

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 money on food, gifts, hotels, and special excursions. Each week I spent around $450 each week including everything.
Do you have any general money-saving tips for future study abroad participants? I was informed of all experiences and spent less than expected.


How would you rate your language skills at the beginning of the program? None
If applicable, to what degree did your living situation aid your language acquisition?

Other Program Information

* Where did you live?

Select all that apply

  • Hotel
  • Hostel
* Who did you live with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans
* Who did you take classes with?

Select all that apply

  • Americans

A Look Back

* What did you like most about the program?
  • Zip-Lining
  • Excursions/Food
  • Culture Experiences
* What could be improved?
  • Expenses
  • N/A
  • Language Barriers
* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? Teachers, ESL, or communication majors would greatly benefit from this experience and have the time of their life. Anyone wanting to learn about another country and have a career or occupation where they could apply it would enjoy this trip.