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WISE Costa Rica
San Jose, Costa Rica (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms: Summer
Program Dates & Deadlines: Click here to view
Budget Sheets Summer
Fact Sheet:
Housing Option:
Home stay Minimum GPA: 2.5
Program Type: Group
Language of Instruction:
Earned Hours Required: 12 S.H. Language Courses Offered: Spanish
Program Advisor: Kim McDaniel Areas of Study: Spanish
Courses Offered: Spanish Non-WIU Students: Yes
FL/GI Requirement: Yes Number of Semester Hours: 6
Term: Summer Graduate credit available: No
Program Description:
WISE Costa Rica title block
Financial Information
Important Dates

Dates/times TBA

Contact Dr. Munia Cabal-Jimenez or Kim McDaniel to get on the email list for updates!

Western Illinois Spanish Experience-Costa Rica (WISE Costa Rica) gives you a four-week immersion in Spanish language and culture while also providing on-site guidance and mentoring by a Department of Foreign Languages faculty member.  Excursions and tours of historical and cultural sites provide you a greater understanding of Costa Rican history and culture.  Lodging with host families improves your Spanish proficiency and gives you opportunities to make life-long connections.  Extracurricular activities such as Costa Rican cooking, Tropical Dance lessons, and yoga classes allow you to explore other facets of Costa Rican culture and interact with your fellow WIU and Veritas students.
This Study Abroad Program is conducted in cooperation with the Center for International Programs at Universidad Veritas in San José, Costa Rica.  Founded in 1975, it enjoys an excellent reputation within the Latin American academic community and is accredited by the Ministry of Education of Costa Rica as a degree granting university.  Its location in San José provides convenient access to the natural beauty of Costa Rica as well as the rich cultural heritage found in the capital city.  With an enrollment of over 1,500 students, it offers much more than Spanish instruction; it is a niche for you to develop your cultural abilities.

Estimated Cost
$4,100-$4,300 per person based on 10 students and 2016 program costs.
This is an estimate and is subject to change.  See the Budget Sheet for details on included items, payment options, and cancellation/refund information.

Funding Opportunities  
• A Center for International Studies Study Abroad Scholarship is available to participants in this Course.  More information and application
Note: CIS scholarships for Summer 2017 programs will open December 1, 2016.

• Phi Beta Delta offers a study abroad scholarship to full-time WIU students.  See our Scholarships page for more details.

• The Department of Foreign Languages and Literatures offer the Kline Scholarship for Study Abroad to FLL majors.  See the departmental scholarships page for more details.

• A variety of other scholarships are available for Study Abroad.  Please see our Scholarships page for more details.

• Most forms of Financial Aid can be used for Study Abroad.  Please contact the Financial Aid Office about your specific program and situation.

Class sessions: All class sessions held on-site in Costa Rica 
Travel: June 5-July 1, 2017 

Application deadline: February 12, 2017

Non-refundable deposit: $1,000 due March 10, 2017
All students must submit a WISE Costa Rica Medical Report showing medical clearance to participate, pay the $45 application fee, and upload proof of passport or application receipt prior to deposit.

Passport copy in application: April 21, 2017*
*Date subject to change based on airline requirements.

Second Payment: $1,000 due April 7, 2017
Final Payment (approx): $2,100-2,300 due May 5, 2017

Credit offered 
SPAN 361, 3 sh, Summer 2017, taught by Dr. Munia Cabal-Jimenez.

Spanish language course, 3 sh, Summer 2017, taught by Universidad Veritas instructors.  Course number and placement is determined by Foreign Languages based on pre-departure placement tests (online written exam and Skype oral interview) administered by Veritas staff. 

Participation in this program can fulfill the Global Issues graduation requirement.
Please check with your academic advisor for more information about how these classes fit your specific academic plans.

Class participation
Active class participation, including contribution to discussions and attendance, is expected in all phases of the Program.   You must attend and participate in your Veritas Spanish course, interact appropriately with your host family, other group members, and other students at Veritas, and participate in all scheduled activities.  Attendance, active participation, and writing assignments are required for the SPAN 361 course.  Questions about the course content or requirements for SPAN 361 should be directed to Dr. Cabal-Jimenez.

ELIGIBILITY REQUIREMENTS (checked at the time of application)
Undergraduates Graduates
Completed at least 12 semester hours Accepted to graduate degree program
Minimum 2.5 overall GPA Approval of graduate adviser & department chair/program director
Good standing with Student Judicial Services Good standing with Student Judicial Services

Additional requirements
Clearance from the Department of Foreign Languages required. 

All majors welcome!  Preference will be given to Spanish majors/minors.  Non-degree students may also apply and should contact Kim McDaniel for more information.

Total enrollment is limited to 20 students. 

A passport is required.  Passports should be valid for at least three months beyond departure from Costa Rica (valid until at least October 1, 2017) and have one blank page for entry stamp.  Passports should be in good condition. Costa Rican Immigration may deny entry if a passport is damaged in any way.

If you need to apply for a passport, standard processing is $135 and takes 6 weeks.  Expedited service is available for an additional charge.  For application locations in Macomb and other useful informaiton, see the Passport Information page.
A copy of your actual passport must be uploaded to your online application no later than April 21, 2017.  Failure to meet this deadline will result in removal from the group flight and possible increased costs.

US Citizens--No visa is required.  When you leave Costa Rica, you will have to pay a departure tax. The cost of the departure tax ($29) is not included in the program cost.

Citizens of other countries must check the Embassy of Costa Rica's website to determine if they need a visa. 
Students are responsible for determining their visa status and obtaining any required travel documents themselves.  Costs associated with these documents are not included in the program cost.

Expect to walk 1-2 miles daily, mostly in an urban environment.  It is not consecutive but scheduled throughout the day.  Some walking in San Jose and on excursions will be on hills.

Costa Rica is located in active earthquake and volcano zones.  Extreme caution is advised when swimming in the ocean.  Excursions and some portions of the class will be conducted outside.  Average temperatures in San José during this time are from mid-60s at night to the 80s during the day.  Humidity levels can be high.  Sun protection is strongly recommended.  Cases of Zika virus have been reported in Costa Rica.

Because some meals are included in the program cost, you are strongly encouraged to self-disclose any food allergies or dietary restriction in your application or contact either Dr. Cabal-Jimenez or Kim McDaniel.  They can help you make advance arrangements regarding food choices that meet your specific needs.

Accessibility and accommodation may be very different than that found in the United States.  Many buildings are inaccessible and wheelchair lifts on public transportation do not always work.  Please contact the Disability Resource Center for questions on the availability of accommodations for your specific situation.

PLEASE NOTE:  It is your responsibility to request accommodations from the DRC; faculty and staff are not legally permitted to inquire about such needs.  Requests should be made as early as possible so there's sufficient time to arrange accommodations in your location.

All participants must have international health insurance for the time they will be on their Program.  Only two options are approved to meet this requirement:

• WIU student health insurance
• A supplemental policy (Patriot Travel Medical) purchased through International Medical Group

Additional information about the insurance requirement is included in the application materials.  You are urged to carefully read this information to make sure you have the correct coverage.

Homestays, usually 2 students per host family, gender separated.  Host families are selected and hired by Veritas.  Placements are based on a pre-departure questionnaire.  Homestay assignments are at the discretion of Veritas administration.

Tentative itinerary
Tentative syllabus

            Faculty leader                             Study Abroad Advisor
Foreign Languages Dr. Munia Cabal-Jimenez Kim McDaniel
332 Morgan Hall Morgan Hall 305F 8 Horrabin Hall
298-1558 298-2260 298-2504

WIU reserves the right to cancel this faculty-led program due to insufficient enrollment or
circumstances beyond the University's control and to adjust the total cost of the program.

Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2018 03/01/2018 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.