Costa Rica

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This tiny democratic republic enjoys one of the highest qualities of life in Central America. A peaceful nation, Costa Rica does not maintain any military forces, choosing instead to focus its attention on nature conservation and a tourism driven economy. The landscape's beauty is stunning, featuring active volcanoes, tropical rainforests, and gorgeous beaches on both coasts. Costa Ricans colloquially refer to themselves as Ticos, which is a good-natured allusion to the nation's small size. Spanish is the official language, though English is spoken around Puerto Limon. Surfing, scuba-diving, and fishing are some favorite tourist pastimes, while soccer is extremely popular with the locals.

For better or worse, many American institutions have found their way into Costa Rica, making fast food prevalent in most moderate to large sized cities. The family unit is very important to Ticos, and often several generations will live together in the same house. Be prepared for a warm and boisterous homestay experience! AHA is connected mostly in and sends students to the Green Coast area and Liberia, a most beautiful area where there is less US presence and less English spoken.

Academic Programs Include

Semester, year-long, and short-term (1-3 month) programs are available. The school year in Costa Rica is August to June. Our Costa Rican host families live throughout the country. Two years of previous Spanish language study is required, though the Costa Rican curriculum is less rigorous than in Spain. Students may participate in a variety of after-school activities such as sports and music. Tutoring is also available.

Program Costs Includes homestay, school, flight, and health and accident insurance

Length Cost (in USDs)
1-3 Month $2,850-4,250
Semester $7,500
Academic Year $14,000

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