API Gap Year in San Joaquin de Flores, Costa Rica: Sustainability and Environmental Studies Program
API students who study abroad in San Joaquín de Flores with API will take classes at The Instituto San Joaquín de Flores. The Instituto San Joaquín de Flores affords students the ability to take courses taught by Costa Rican faculty from local universities. All coursework has been specifically designed for American students with the goal of maximizing their linguistic and cultural exposure. The location of the Instituto takes advantage of the beautiful natural environment, with picturesque views of distant mountains and volcanoes. Small class sizes and attentive professors, combined with the incredible beauty and tranquility of the grounds of the Instituto, create an unparalleled environment for learning. Transcripts for courses completed at the Instituto are issued by U.S.-accredited Fairfield University.
San Joaquín de Flores is a charming, colorful and quaint colonial town located ten miles from San José. It is surrounded by the unparalleled beauty of Costa Rica. The small setting and slower pace of life allow for exceptional opportunities for linguistic and cultural integration. Leisurely strolls through the streets lead to encounters with friendly people, young and old. Everything can be reached on foot and along the way students can visit historic landmarks and buildings from the 18th century. It is easy to explore the Costa Rican flora and fauna outside of San Joaquín de Flores. Costa Rica boasts thirteen national parks and six biological preserves where an amazing number of species of plants, animals, birds and butterflies can be observed. API students have the opportunity to explore volcanoes, beaches, rain and cloud forests. Explore endless opportunities and discover the culture, beauty and history of San Joaquín de Flores and Costa Rica.
Requirements: minimum 3.0 GPA, open to students with a minimum of one year of college-level Spanish or the equivalent, valid passport with supporting documents
Housing: host family located within city center; meals and laundry included; all students have a private bedroom
International Internship Placements There are a number of international internship placements available to API participants.
For a summary of potential options, see the list below: Accounting and Finance Advertising, Communications and Journalism Architecture, Landscape, and Planning Arts and Design Business, Entrepreneurship, and Management Education Environmental Hospitality, Recreation, and Tourism Law NGO Psychology and Social Science Science, Technology, Engineering and Math Sports Veterinary Science and Zoology And More! Didn’t see your area of interest listed? Don’t fret! Just contact us and let us know what you are looking for and we can let you know what the options might be.
Spanish Language and Culture Program Students will complete 1 of 3 tracks per term in this program (tracks are differentiated based on the student’s language level and academic goals). Students may also choose to add additional hours or combine two quarter terms for additional credit. TRACK 1 – INTENSIVE LANGUAGE This track is open to students at all levels who are interested in improving their Spanish language skills. Students will take 120 contact hours of Spanish language, and may add on additional hours (up to 180 contact hours total) for an additional fee. TRACK 2 – SPANISH LANGUAGE AND CULTURE This track is open to intermediate and advanced-level students (levels B1- B2) who are interested in improving their Spanish language skills while taking additional hours of culture and content courses. Students will take 120 hours of Spanish language, as well as an additional 65 hours of cultural electives (for 185 contact hours per term). TRACK 3 – HISPANIC STUDIES This track is open to advanced and superior-level students (level B2 and higher) who are interested in taking more in-depth Spanish cultural courses. Students may choose to take either 3 or 4 culture courses (to earn 135-180 contact hours per term).
Students are not required to take a Spanish language course at this level. Spanish Language, Business, and Humanities Program This program offers classes taught in English in both business and humanities, as well as Spanish language courses at all levels. Students who have completed more advanced Spanish courses can choose from a wide variety of classes focusing on Spanish culture and civilization that are taught in Spanish. A placement exam determines the language level of each student. The fall semester begins with an intensive two-week Spanish language course for 3 semester credits. The spring early start semester begins with an intensive four-week Spanish language course for 6 credits. Students are then required to take at least one Spanish language class during the semester. Depending on the term, students then choose four or five additional classes at 3 credits each for a total of 12-21 semester credits. Spain’s capital since 1561, Madrid is the contemporary capital of Spanish culture, finance, and industry. A large, international and cosmopolitan city, Madrid is a city of possibilities. It boasts incredible monuments and museums, including the Museo del Prado, Museo Nacional Centro de Arte Reina Sofía, the Thyssen-Bornemisza Museum and the Museo de la Real Academia de Bellas Artes de San Fernando. Visitors cannot miss the Iglesia de San Isidro, once the cathedral of Madrid, or the Palacio Real. Madrid is also known for its fountains and elaborate parks, including the glorious Parque del Retiro. The energy of Madrid is in its street life and warm people. Taking a gap year in Madrid means experiencing more than a classroom – it means experiencing the history of Spain and its people. Aspire by API gives students the chance to live and learn in this fast-paced capital city.