With 25 percent of its land protected parkland, Costa Rica is known for its diverse scenery, political stability, and friendly people. Our programs are based in Heredia, a bustling suburb of San José filled with small neighborhoods, restaurants, plazas and universities. The excellent academic opportunities are close to ecologically diverse sites and beaches, charming Costa Rican villages, and more than 100 volcanic formations. Costa Rica is one of the most stable nations in Latin America and is even known as the “Switzerland of Latin America” since dismantling its army in 1948.
Nestled between mountains, Heredia offers a unique Latin American experience. You'll find great academic opportunities at top-ranked Universidad Nacional, all within the reach of ecological sites, national parks, beautiful beaches, and nearby hiking trails. So, sit back and enjoy a fresh cup of Costa Rican coffee as you embrace the Pura Vida.
You'll bask in near 80-degree days as you explore Heredia, ecological sites, national parks, beautiful beaches, and nearby hiking trails. Your three-week Ecology and Sustainable Development class, perfect to fulfill an elective or science requirement, will build your understanding of the recovery, preservation, and protection of the environment. With activities included, your stay in Costa Rica will be even more valuable and memorable.
What Our Students Say
“IFSA allowed us to have so much independence and flexibility, which allowed us to engage with the local culture and explore the city right from the start.”
“The biggest thing I learned is the value of immersing oneself in a culture unlike that which you come from. Even though Australia speaks English, the culture has taught me to relax and take everything one step at a time.”
“I enjoyed the academic and personal freedom of my IFSA program. Being able to take whatever classes I wanted/needed in order to satisfy my requirements for major and what happened to interest me set the foundation for my study abroad experience.”
“For two years, I have tried to manage and exist with depression and anxiety. Coming to New Zealand enlivened me and gave me the tools to function and create the life I want and need. I was able to live somewhere for the first time away from family and friends and thrive in it. It allowed me to realize my potential and ability.”
“I’ve learned about the culture my family comes from, more about the world in general, and the different ways there are to simply live. Above all, I think I’ve learned a lot about myself and my behavior—how I tend to act and react in situations. I’ve also become more assertive, courageous, and confident through this experience.”
“My IFSA program was amazing. They really do a great job making sure you adjust well and are well equipped for your time abroad.”
“Through IFSA, I learned to enjoy the small things in life, was able to better understand a culture different from mine, developed intellectually through independent study, and improved my Spanish.”
“The connections I made during my time in Scotland was the most enjoyable aspect of my IFSA study abroad abroad experience. I was able to connect with peers on the program, IFSA staff, and the local culture. Being part of the St. Andrews basketball team really facilitated my relationship with the campus and its students.”
“Through my IFSA program, I volunteered at a travel startup where I initiated and developed a six-month lesson plan for the first English teaching program in a Mayan community, created a cost plan for program volunteers, and translated itineraries.”
“I enjoyed study abroad the most when I got courage to speak at my first poetry SLAM, befriend a fanzine publisher, and speak up (in my broken Spanish) in my film class. Having the courage to own who I am made me feel good.