NMSU Global Citizens

The adventure started as soon as their plane took off and left their comfort zone!

Friday June 1st: Seven New Mexico State University students and their teacher arrived safe and sound to the airport of Alajuela. After a long day of travel, they arrived to their B&B where they had the opportunity to share their travel experience as it was the first time of many to leave their country alone. They had a delicious dinner and went to sleep since the adventure was about to start!

Saturday 2nd: This was the first day of being immerse in the beautiful city of Heredia and culture of Costa Rica. Throughout the walking tour the students had the chance to experience a traditional Feria del Agricultor or Farmer’s Market. They were delighted by the tasteful varieties of fruits which they had the chance to buy. They later had lunch in a typical ’soda’ in the Mercado Central, where they not only ate more, but bought some souvenirs and Costa Rican candy. To end the day they had a walk about in the central park where they had time to take many pictures in front of the fountain, church and Fortín. 

Sunday 3rd: When was the last time you did something for the first time? For NMSU students that day arrived when they were faced with the challenging Rafting experience in the Pacuare river. They were able to confront their fear of new outdoor adventure to have a memorable experience. They had a blast through the entire 4 hour tour through the river. Despite the fear at the beginning, they were able to enjoy every second of it, and are ready to come back to Costa Rica to do it again!

Monday 4th: This day started with a competition! The group was divided into two and the Treasure Hunt started all around San Joaquin! They had the opportunity to speak to locals and ask them questions regarding Costa Rica and the culture. They took tons pictures and after the surprisingly fast challenge, both groups ended in a tie. As a price they all received an ice cream from the brand Dos Pinos, which they seemed to enjoy as the day was sunny and hot. After the morning was spent on games, they headed back to the CPI school where they had their cooking class. They cooked a traditional lunch which involved rice, beans, picadillo and tortillas. The tortillas was their favorite part, as they seems to be experts at making them. Later on they had the chance to eat their own food, which was delectable. Then the group had Spanish class and ended the day with their host families.

Tuesday 5th: The challenge they faced this day was like no other. The students went to La Carpio, a community of limited resources. They had a talk with Gail, the founder of 'Costa Rica Humanitarian Association’ and were able to understand how small actions can turn into positivity when an entire community wants to change in order to have a better quality of life. They saw a play made by the ladies of La Carpio, had the chance to help with some unwrapping and packaging of products and buy bracelets, keychains and many more stuff from the same artisans of the community. This day was mind-opening for them as they learned great lessons which will be taken into account in the future. 

Wednesday & Thursday 6th & 7th:These two days the students had a chance to engage with the children of the community of La Carpio. They talked with them, drew pictures, colored, played games and participated in activities which involved learning English. Both the NMSU students and children had a really good time with each other. After La Carpio volunteer program they headed back to CPI where they received their Spanish classes! 

Friday 8th:This was the last day for the NMSU Global Citizens. In the morning we went to La Carpio for the last time. The students did a hard work this day as they constructed a sidewalk for the community. They moved the sand and rock from side to side and created concrete which was used to cover the sidewalk holes. People from La Carpio were willing to help as well to improve the community, and so NMSU students and La Carpio people worked as a team. The result was incredible and now they have an improved and safe sidewalk. In the afternoon NMSU had the San José City Tour. They went to the national theatre, learned about Costa Rica’s history and had a chance to buy many souvenir in the Mercado Central. After a really long day, we came back to CPI, the students were handed their diplomas and the trip came to an end. It was an amazing group and the CPI staff hopes to see them again in the near future!

Remember: Things are not better or worse, just different :) 

Fabi Granados

Welcome St. Francis School 2018

Hello once again, curious reader! 

On this first days of June we received warmly our Summer students from Saint Francis School!

So far we have managed to land in Liberia, travel all the way to Monteverde, meet our hosts families, have amazing meals, learn Spanish and do ziplining along the cloud forest! 

This week paints to be an exiting one, with Spanish classes, coffee tours, more ziplining, waterfalls, volcanoes and natural hot springs happening in our horizon! 


I invite you to stay tuned for more, as we go throughout this journey in Costa Rica!

Pura Vida!

Patricia I. :) 

Lebanon Valley College: 3ra Semana en Costa Rica!

Después de un excelente fin de semana en La Fortuna, relajándose en las aguas termales y disfrutando de la increíble Catarata de la Fortuna;  finalmente las chicas llegan al Bosque Nuboso en Monteverde. Ansiosas por iniciar su tercera semana en Costa Rica después de dos semanas llenas de aventuras en Heredia.  El domingo por la tarde las 5 chicas, Rachel D, Amelia, Autumn, Elizabeth y Rachel  S conocieron a su nueva familia tica en Monteverde.

El lunes inicio con una mañana de clases de español, seguida por una deliciosa clase de cocina donde hicimos nuestro propio almuerzo. Junto a Beatriz y Abigail, aprendimos a hacer fajitas de pollo, una  ensalada variada en vegetales y tortillas! Las chicas habían tenido la oportunidad de hacer tortillas en Heredia por lo que cuando llegaron a Monteverde ya eran todas una expertas haciendo tortillas deliciosas.

Por la tarde hicimos una caminata para conocer Santa Elena y el "phototreasure hunt". Caminamos por el pueblo para conocer donde están los principales atractivos de la zona, restaurantes, souvenirs, súper mercados y terminamos la tarde en una cafetería de la zona con un excelente cappuccino y coconut mocha.  

¡Con mucha emoción finalizamos nuestro primer día en Monteverde! 

 -Fabiola Fuentes 

Ivy Academy 2018

Bienvenidos al Blog de Ivy Academy!


I am Nicole, the guide for Ivy Academy, so far we have had an amazing time experiencing new things about Costa Rica! In such a short time we have learned so much about the people, and how they do things here! Here I will give you information about what we have done each day!

Day 1 Santa Elena Treasure Hunt & Cooking Class


Today we walked around Santa Elena, a town in Monteverde so the kids could know the place better. We did a treasure hunt where they were able to get out of there shell a little bit and ask the locals questions, in Spanish! They did so well with this activity. After the walk around Santa Elena we returned to CPI where we had a Latin Cooking Class, they made a typical dish in Costa Rica called Arroz Con Pollo (Rice with Chicken) after they prepared their dishes it was time for the feast! The kids enjoyed their dishes and had a new appreciation for their food because they made it.

Day 2 Santa Elena Cloud Forest Hike


In the morning we did a cloud hike in Santa Elena. The kids loved to see all the animals in the forest. We saw a tarantula and a famous bird from Costa Rica called the Kietzel! They learned all about different insects and how things worked in the rainforest!

Day 3 Life Monteverde Volunteer Project


Today was a very fulfilling day, the kids went to a sustainable farm in Monteverde to learn more about conservation! They arrived to Life Monteverde and took a tour around the farm, then they were able to plant trees in the farm! Afterwards, we had a very filling lunch that all came from the farm!



Tomorrow we will go back to Life Monteverde where we will do more volunteer work and learn more about the farm and conservation. Tomorrow will be a day of more work and less play but it will be fun for the kids as well. We will have lunch again at Life Monteverde and then when we return to CPI we will have a Latin Dance Class! I will keep you all updated through this blog about the rest of the week. Also, feel free to check out the gallery where there will be pictures of each day here in Monteverde!


Muchas gracias por seguir nuestro avance mientras descubrimos el paraíso de Monteverde!  


(Thank you very much for following our progress while discovering the paradise of Monteverde!)


DUKE UNIVERSITY / Language, Culture & Health in Costa Rica

Thursday, May 24th. Landing in Costa Rica at the airport of Alajuela the students started coming one by one in different flights. After all of them arrived we started heading to our hotel Bougainvillea located in Santo Domingo, Heredia. Nice views from our rooms showing the city lights from San Jose which is the capital of Costa Rica.

Second day. After a good rest and a good traditional breakfast the group continue the trip. We arrived to CPI school in San Joaquin, Heredia. The welcome meeting and orientation started with some basic information about Costa Rica. For example what things we recommend to do and what things we shouldn’t do during our experience visiting the tropics. Then finally the students met their host families enriching their cultural experience.

Walking around San Joaquin has helped the students to become familiar with the place that they are going to live for a month. San Joaquín de Flores is a charming, colorful and quaint colonial town located ten miles from San José. Everything can be reached on foot and along the way students can visit historic landmarks and buildings from the 18th century.

In the first week the group has visited a coffee plantation where they had a funny and educational tour. Teaching the students how coffee plants grow and the different factors that makes costarican coffee one of the best coffees in the whole world.

On Monday the group started with its first class of the program. The students look excited about this new experience to study abroad. In a class of the CPI school the guys are going to be studying almost every day during the mornings. After classes they are going to do different activities and some days they have plans to go visit hospitals, clinics and health centers.

The first activity for them was a latin dance class. Dancing different rhythms like merengue, salsa and bachata the students have experienced how ticos have fun in a dance floor.

The adventure will continue.

Diego QR

Second part

The fisrt week was a complete success.

 Besides taking classes every morning and keeping with the program and course of syllabus. The group after the dancing class they proceed with a latin cooking class. This class was very interesting and funny. The guys learned the right way to chop vegetables in order to prepare one of our very traditional meals in Costa Rica ”arroz con pollo” or rice with chicken. Of course after they prepared the meal they ate what they cooked. They are good chefs because the final result was great and the food was delicious.

Some free afternoons are part of the itinerary, so in this free time the students have the chance to explore on their own, visit and eat in different restaurants. Also this free time is good because they spend time together as a group and they get to meet each other in a deeper way to create a bond between the group members.

The group visited the Caja Costarricense de Seguro Social where they had a talk about how the health care system works in Costa Rica. It was a very educational talk and the guys got to now almost every detail about the different ways that all costaricans and also inmigrants use their social insurance.

Next day the group visited a community of nicaranguan inmigrants where they got to see the shocking conditions where a lot of people in Costa Rica live. In general this community is inhabited by people who came from Nicaragua to try to find a better quality of life. The houses are built mostly with very cheap materials and the field is unstable. It was a very nice experience for all of us because they get to appreciate more what they have and be more grateful with life.

The group visited La Paz Waterfall Gardens on Saturday. Walking through the forest and looking at the beautiful waterfalls. They could see all the different species of animals in their animal sanctuary and they ate a very yummy lunch too. It was an all day trip so when they arrived to San Joaquin they were ready to go to their host families houses to have dinner with them.

The group went to a Costa Rica soccer game on Sundayin the National Stadium. It was a friendly game against Ireland. Costa Rica won 3 to 0. It was a special match because it was the last game in our country before the world cup begins.  Saying bye to the players and sending positive vibes to them hoping they are going to do a good job in Russia.

On Monday the program continued with a visit to the EBAIS (Equipos Basicos de Atencion Integral en Salud). These health centers are a very important part in the costarican health system. So, for them was a very academic visit where they got to understand how costaricans are cared.

Pura Vida

Diego QR