NCC in Costa Rica
Offered Fall Term
North Central College students river rafting in Costa Rica (Fall 12).
No prior knowledge of Spanish is required, though many students study Spanish before going. The program is open to all majors, and upper level academic credit is awarded for the internship.
For the first eight weeks of this program, students travel to the Pacific coast of Costa Rica, where they enroll in intensive Spanish courses, take one course with an accompanying North Central College professor, and live with a family in the town of Quepos. Students take Spanish classes for four hours every morning at COSI (Costa Rica Spanish Institute), an intensive language school overlooking the beaches and just a few miles from Manuel Antonio National Park. Local buses bring students from their homes in Quepos to COSI and the nearby beaches. After a three-day excursion to Nicaragua in the ninth week, students have a mid-semester break before moving to the capital city of San Jose, where they live with a new host family; beginning students continue language study and engage in volunteer community work, while advanced students begin a six-week internship.
Students learn about and become immersed in Costa Rican culture not only by living with two host families, but also by participating in weekly cultural events and weekend excursions around the country.
NCC Eligibility Requirements:
Sophomore, junior, or senior standing; GPA 3.0 preferred. No Spanish required; two years of college-level Spanish required for internship.
Costa Rica Group Program Information:
- COSI student Code of Conduct
- Manuel Antonio Orientation 2010
- San Jose Orientation 2010
- Fall 2010 Costa Rica Program Calendar
CAPA Application Material:
- The application documents can be typed into but not saved, so students should complete them in one sitting at the computer and print them out.
- Internship application is for advanced Spanish language students (2 or more years of college-level Spanish). Cover letters and resumes must be completed in both English and Spanish.
- Volunteer application is for the Spanish language students with less than 2 years of college-level Spanish. Cover letters and resumes in English only.
PLEASE NOTE: BOTH THE INTERNSHIP AND VOLUNTEER APPLICATIONS HAVE A CHECKLIST AT THE TOP.
THE OFFICE OF INTERNATIONAL PROGRAMS WILL USE THE PASSPORT PHOTOS, RESUME, AND PROFESSIONAL/ACADEMIC REFERENCE LETTERS YOU HAVE ALREADY SUBMITTED. IF ANY OF THESE APPLICATION PIECES HAVE NOT BEEN SUBMITTED OR IF YOU WANT TO SUBMIT SOMETHING NEW, PLEASE INCLUDE THAT WITH YOUR APPLICATION.
STUDENTS ARE RESPONSIBLE FOR THE APPLICATION FORM, COVER LETTER, AND POLICE BACKGROUND CHECK. You will be given a request letter for the background check.
NCC Academic Credit:
NCC students will receive 12 NCC credits: Intensive Spanish (6-7), NCC course (3), and internship or community service (2-3).
Housing and Meals:
All NCC students are required to stay with host families, who live a short distance from the school. Host families provide students with breakfast and dinner. Students are responsible for their own lunches, which can be bought at ICLC.
Please note: The housing/host family application is quite brief. If you would like to include additional information or details you feel are important re: your host family placement, it is ENCOURAGED that you write an additional paragraph on the application or attach a separate sheet.
Participants pay tuition and a $3000 program fee to North Central College.
Financial aid is applicable to this program, however, all study abroad students should meet with a financial aid representative during the spring term to determine any changes/adjustments in their financial aid package.
This really depends on the student. Students need to consider all personal spending money including travel! Students who participated in this program last year estimate between $2000-$2500, including some travel.
Brooke Van Crey
Brooke Van Crey and Adam Coutteau in front of Volcan Masaya on an excursion to Nicaragua
Major: Psychology & Spanish
Minor: Organizational Comm
Choosing to study abroad was an easy choice for me after hearing from other students, First of all, one of my main goals for studying abroad was to learn Spanish and right now I can think of no better way than to totally immerse yourself in the culture. Staying with host families is a perfect opportunity to practice Spanish, try different foods, and really live life as if you were a Tico/Tica. I truly love our school (COSI-The Costa Rica Spanish Institute). Our classrooms overlook the ocean and mountainside and our teachers here are really encouraging. We attend class from 8:00 to 12:00 everyday with two days having the additional North Central Intercultural Seminar, but otherwise we have the rest of the days to ourselves to spend with our host families, go to the beach, and study, (of course)!!! The weekends are free and usually every other weekend we travel to other parts of the country. So far we have been whale/dolphin watching in Uvita, we have been white water rafting on the Narango River, we have found a secret waterfall that we have already visited twice, we have been to the Manuel Antonio National Park and seen some monkeys, we spent a weekend in Jaco, Montezuma, and Isla Tortuga where the true beauty of Costa Rica is breathtaking. We have more places to check off our list, but the time truly flies. I was most afraid of being homesick, but you have to remind yourself that if you make the choice to study abroad, I strongly believe you won't regret it. It is a life-changing experience and at times it may be challenging but that is how we grow as human beings.