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Exploring Peace, Justice, and Community Engagement
Experience the life and culture of the peoples of Guatemala and Costa Rica, including indigenous populations, immigrants and refugees from El Salvador and Nicaragua. Learn with and from grassroots community organizations dedicated to work on issues related to conflict, foreign policy, gender, and economic and social justice. The unique histories and lives of the people not only inspire, but also challenge students to think about their role as agents of change.
- Learn about diverse approaches to environmental conservation, sustainability, economic issues, and social justice.
- Frequent guest speakers, excursions, and hands-on active learning to immerse you in the community and culture.
- One-on-one Spanish language class with native Spanish speakers. All Spanish levels are welcome, from beginners to native speakers!
- Participate on a program run by an organization dedicated to social justice, which uplifts the voices of underrepresented and marginalized peoples in all programs.
- Host family stays with welcoming and friendly families in each country.
- Travel to two countries in one semester - Guatemala and Costa Rica, with additional travel within each country!
- Spanish – up to 12 course choices available
- Latin American Liberation Theologies (Religion 336)
- Citizen Participation with a Globalized Economy (Political Science 310)
- Cultural Conflict and Change in Latin America (History/Women, Gender, Sexuality Studies 355)
Spend seven weeks, four of them with an urban family in the western highland city of Quetzaltenango (Xela) and the other three traveling and exploring Guatemala, including brief visits to Antigua, the Lake Atitlan region and Nebaj. Xela, the home base for the program, is characterized by the Santa María volcano, colonial-era buildings, quiet parks, plazas, open-air markets, and narrow stone-paved streets. You will stay with host families and take classes at the nearby language school, Casa Xelajú.
After Guatemala, you will travel to Costa Rica, where you will live with host families in Cedros de Montes de Oca neighborhood, located about 20 minutes east of San José. While in Costa Rica, you will explore the unique neighborhoods and community of Longo Mai and La Carpio. Classes are held on the beautiful campus of Latin America Bible University. Free time on weekends allow students to explore parks and beaches in this beautiful area!
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