Costa Rica was a wonderful experience! Past Review

By (Elementary Education And Spanish, SUNY - College at Geneseo) for

SUNY Geneseo: Heredia - Centro de Estudios Hispánicos de la Universidad Nacional

What did you gain/learn from your experience abroad? Was it worthwhile?
It was very worthwhile.I want to definitely go back to Costa Rica again in the future. By observing in the elementary school, I'd even like to teach English there as a profession. I got to speak Spanish everyday and my Spanish comprehension and speaking has greatly improved. I thought that eveyone was going to live in shacks and be poor, but that is not true at all. Puerto Viejo suprised me the most. The people there are wonderful and just very different than how I expected.

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.

The teachers were great and the work load was perfect.

* Host Country Program Administration

On-site administration of your program

Norma who worked for Geneseo was so wonderful. She helped us with everything that we had questions with. She even set me up to observe at an elementary school.

* Housing:

How satisfied were you with your living arrangements?

My host brother refused to speak to me which made me feel uncomfortable. My host mom was very nice but she never did anything with me. She never cared to take me anywhere. We had great talks and I learned a lot from her, I just wished that I felt that the two of them were more of like a family to me. Cynthis has had 24 host studentrs before me so I was treated like just another person staying at her house.

* Food:

I filled out papers saying that I was a vegetarian but Geneseo never told my host family. Whemn Cynthis found out she did her best to make sure I was always fed and with meals that I enjoyed.

* Social & Cultural Integration:

How integrated did you feel with the local culture?

The school trip to Sarripiqui was not very well planned out but I enjoyed my non-school trip with my classmates. We went to Puerto Viejo, Falamingo Beach, San Jose and more

* Health Care:

How well were health issues addressed during the program?

* Safety:

I had major issues with my host mom and the alarm system. I had a key that she gave me, but she did not allow me to enter the house when she was not there because she left the alarm on. I would have to stay out late untill she returned home because I was not allowed to come home. She made it very difficult for me.

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)


* Did your program have a foreign language component? Yes
Language acquisition improvement?

I practiced wirth my host family and my teachers and everyone in costa rica that I met.

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?

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  • Host Family

A Look Back

* What do you know now that you wish you knew before going on this program? I would tell a student to go through their own school because Geneseo had meetings that I could not attend and I was not told what was going on. A student doing this program needs to go in with an opened mind and should be very outgoing and friendly. They need to give the family and the students a chance. I met the greatest friends that I could have ever asked for!