I’ve never been more pleased with public transportation than I have been with the bus system in Costa Rica. Instead of a thirty minute walk to class, for fifty cents I can get there in seven. I’ve seen drivers pull over to pick up people standing with their arm out on the side of the road where there wasn’t a designated stop. I’ve been able to go to San Jose, a national forest, and a beautiful waterfall, all through this system. And when someone holding a baby, an elderly person, or a pregnant woman steps on, the handicap seats become instantly available. Not to mention the gorgeous view of the country you get to see along the ride and the support for the national soccer teams on some of the drivers’ dashboards, as pictured here.
Student Blogs & Vlogs | College Study Abroad Programs, IFSA-Butler
Here are some pictures taken from one of the buildings that I have Spanish class in at the Universidad Nacional. There are other buildings on campus with a similar design. It may be the Environmental Studies major in me, but I love it! So much beautiful greenery from the moment you enter provides such a warm and inviting learning environment. People are always sitting at the tables in the middle eating lunch, working on homework/group projects, or just hanging out. I was speaking with a Tico (Costa Rican) about this today and he told me that it is very common to have this type of design in the universities here. United States, take note!
September 11, 2013
67 days I’ve been in my new home of Costa Rica.
67 days until I go back home the U-S-of-A.
I have a lot of mixed feelings about that revelation, some of them clichés but all genuine.
Here are some pictures of our trip to INBioparque, a zoo in Heredia featuring all of the ecosystems of Costa Rica.
Featured here are just a fraction of the flowers and animals that we got a chance to see, both wild and caged.
It seems completely counterintuitive to send study abroad students to a completely different place for their first week of orientation, only to shuttle them off to a completely new town with completely new family.
It’s paramount to doubling the culture shock, antithetical to IFSA’s promise of “More culture. Less shock.”
But, by George, it works. Transition to university has been easier than I could have imagined, no small thanks to my time in Liberia.
New campus. New students. New professors. New subjects. New regulations. New languages.
All of the change associated with studying at a new school is enough to drive even the most competent student mad.
Here are a couple of tips I picked up from my experience of “syllabus week” at a foreign university.