I am very satisfied with the support we receive from UNIBE in the sports field, as well as in the various recreational activities they organize. This allows us to develop in different disciplines, while serving as a distracting element. They are an escape and help a little with relaxation and recreation.
I was one of the few students fortunate enough to spend 4 weeks working in paradise as well as having the opportunity to learn Costa Rican culture, language and traditions. Through the perfectly crafted program at UNIBE, I was able to work in all three level of the Costa Rican healthcare system. My first week for example, I worked at an EBAIS which would be equivalent to a primary healthcare clinic in the US. I worked side by side with dedicated healthcare professionals to treat patients with chronic medical issues. In addition, I was exposed to a unique and important position within their healthcare system- the ATAPs- who are traveling nurses and physicians. We walked door to door vaccinating children and performing general checkup's on as many individuals as possible. My second week, I worked in the Coronado Clinic where I spent time in the emergency department, assisting in minor surgeries and listening in on consultations. I was fortunate to meet and work with medical students from a variety of the schools in Costa Rica. I made both friends and memories to last a lifetime. During my third week, I worked at Calderon Guardia Hospital where as per my choosing, I worked on Labor and Delivery. I could not be more thankful for the opportunity to work in my chosen field. It increased my understanding and ability to speak medical Spanish. This is an extremely useful thing to know for my future career. My final week in Costa Rica, I worked at a nursing home, an adult day care center and a kindergarten. We provided education to patients and examined them where it was appropriate. Interestingly, I was also able to spend one day with the indigenous people of Costa Rica. It included a beautiful and informative tour around their protected lands and I learned about their beliefs and ideas. I was fascinated by their natural medical remedies and was even able to try a variety of the plants that they use for treatment. Also, a very important part of my month was spending the afternoons in Spanish class. This allowed me to increase my comprehension, writing and speaking abilities of the language. The class was tailored to fit my level of Spanish and I can honestly say that my Spanish dramatically improved after spending a month immersed in the environment. With all this said, not only was my month educationally enriching but on the weekends, I was given the chance to travel around the country. UNIBE had coordinated a full day tour to a Coffee Estate, Volcano and the Waterfalls. They offered an optional coffee tour and white water rafting/zip lining tour which I took part in and would highly recommend. In addition, my favorite weekend was the 3 day, 2 night trip to the pacific coast. I was at their national park/ beach called Manuel Antonio. Its beauty and wildlife were stunning. While spending the month there, I lived with my host mom also known in Costa Rica as my mamatica. She was an extremely kind, generous women who not only opened up her home to me but her family/friends and traditions. We cooked dinner together every night and I learned wonderful, delicious recipes that I have already made for my family at home. Her house was clean and laundry as well as wifi was provided. I can honestly say that this was one of the best months of my life. I am truly grateful for all of the hard work and dedication that Señora Elizabeth Rodriguez and her staff put in to making this an unforgettable experience. I traveled alone for these 4 weeks and always felt extremely safe and well taken care of. No matter what issues or concerns I had, they were addressed promptly and each day I went home with a smile on my face. I would highly recommend this program. It is a once in a lifetime opportunity that I could not be more happy that I did. If you are interested in a fun, educational and unforgettable experience, this program and Costa Rica is the place for you. I miss it already being home for just a few days but I know without a doubt, I will be back. Pura Vida! Amanda Pelliguan NYIT.
My primary reason for choosing a study abroad program in Costa Rica was to have the opportunity to learn and practice medical Spanish. I wanted an immersion program where I would primarily speak Spanish during the day at rotations and during the night with my host family. The foreign exchange program at University of Iberoamerica (UNIBE) gave me all of this and more. My days were spent learning from patient physicians practicing the specialties in medicine of my choice. I will become a dermatologist and so UNIBE catered my schedule to my areas of interest: dermatology, minor surgery, and internal medicine. Thus, I was able to learn Spanish vocabulary relevant to my future field of medicine, which I found to be one of the greatest strengths of this program. In addition to learning another language, I had the opportunity to learn more about the culture and healthcare system of another country. Costa Rica has a very special health care system with socialized medicine, in which there are different levels of care: ebaises, clinics, and hospitals. UNIBE allowed me to experience the ways in which each of these different facilities operated. I also experienced the unique culture of Costa Rica through many encounters provided by UNIBE. Every evening I returned to my host family, whom went above and beyond what I had expected. My host mother patiently listened and taught me Spanish, made homemade Costa Rican meals for me, and included me in family events, treating me as part of her own family. And finally, UNIBE gave me the opportunity to visit many Costa Rican landmarks, including Manuel Antonio beach and national park, the national museum, traditional dancing, an artisan gallery and downtown market, La Paz waterfalls, and the Arenal volcano, just to name a few. Every person that I met on this rotation was very patient and inclusive towards me, making this experience one that I will cherish for the rest of my life. .