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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Antigua, Guatemala; Tikal, Guatemala
  • Program Terms: Summer
  • Restrictions: UC applicants only
Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2018 01/31/2018
Rolling Admission 05/05/2018 06/16/2018
Summer 2019 03/15/2019 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.

Indicates that deadline has passed
Fact Sheet:
Program Type Detailed: UC Faculty-Led Program Program Type General: Faculty-Led
Level of Study: Undergraduate Academic Theme: Language, Culture, and Humanities
Credit Offered: Transfer Credit, UC Credit Registration Term: Summer
Minimum GPA: 2.5 Language Courses Offered: Yes
Language of Instruction: English, Spanish Language Prerequisite: No
Housing Options: Host Family Program Advisor: Bene Khoury
Program Description:

Program Overview

guate foodThis is a Summer Semester Spanish Immersion Program in Antigua, Guatemala. In addition to studying Spanish in a Spanish-speaking country, you will have many opportunities for cultural learning and service experience.
You will have 20 hours a week of one-on-one Spanish instruction with a native Spanish-speaking instructor, live with a Guatemalan host family, and do up to 8 hours a week of volunteer/service learning work at a site such as a rural elementary school, a day care center for children from poor families, a clinic, an after-school program, or a center for handicapped or malnourished children. The program also includes weekend excursions so you can experience different areas and aspects of Guatemala; for example you are likely to climb an active volcano, visit Lake Atitlán, have a guided tour of an ancient Mayan archeological site, and spend time on a beach with black volcanic sand.
There is a four-week program and a six-week program to choose from, but the six-week program is especially recommended if it is at all possible for you to consider it. Many of the major costs are the same (such as airfare) and so for a relatively low extra cost you can get 50% more time to improve your Spanish, receive credits for Service Learning, and also experience more of the country and its culture, especially through the additional weekend excursions.
All students take at least two UC Spanish language course equivalents - for example SPAN 2015 and SPAN 2016, but you can take whichever courses you need or are most appropriate for you. All students also take Latin America Today (SPAN 3802), which counts towards the Spanish major, minor and Certificate for Spanish for Health Care and Social Work. Additionally, although all students do some volunteer service work, if you are in the six-week program you will earn credits for Service Learning (SPAN 3051), which also counts towards these options.
Please note: the program does not include an excursion to the Mayan ruins at Tikal. If you wish to go there you could extend your stay by a few days and make the trip on your own after the program is over, but this would be totally outside of the program and UC would not be responsible in any way.

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Antigua, Guatemala

Guatemala offers great physical and cultural diversity. There is beautiful scenery: much of the country is mountainous, there are rain forests and cloud forests, beaches, and the famous volcano-rimmed Lake Atitlán. A high percentage of the population is Mayan, and traditional Mayan culture is very evident, most obviously in the many Mayan languages spoken, the commonly worn indigenous dress, the colorful hand-woven textiles, the traditional markets and the presence of “milpa” or small scale corn agriculture.

Antigua is a very attractive, small colonial city in the central highlands that was the country’s capital during the period of Spanish rule. It was designated a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1979 and attracts many visitors who come to enjoy its history, cobbled streets, colonial style architecture, traditional market, courtyard cafés and restaurants and peaceful atmosphere. Antigua is also internationally known as a center of Spanish language instruction specializing in one-on-one immersion classes with native speakers, so students come from many countries to study here. UC partners with a prominent language school that has many years of experience in this area.

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Who Can Participate?Guate children

 Students at the following levels are eligible to participate in this program:

  • Freshmen
  • Sophomores
  • Juniors
  • Seniors

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Academic Program and Course Information

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The Program is open to all UC students. Students earn 3 UC credits plus 6 transfer credits in the 4 week program or 3 UC credits plus 9 transfer credits in the 6 week program.

The type of credits earned is determined according to the needs of each individual student, but all students receive credit for at least one Spanish language course at the 1000, 2000, 3000 or 4000 level (taught by faculty from La Unión Spanish Language Academy) and for a mandatory culture course taught by a UC faculty member.

All students in this program are required to enroll in SPAN3082, section 001 for the Summer term. In order to receive credit from the host institutions, students will also have to register for MLTI3000.

Tuition and fees are assessed based on total enrolled hours for a term. This includes the hours associated with the study abroad class. Students who enroll for more than 18 hours for the term will be assessed additional per credit hour fees over and above the flat fees associated with being enrolled full-time (for most students full-time is 12-18 hours).
Co-op students selected to participate in this program are required to enroll in the course during the designated term, regardless of when the student may be on co-op.  If the course is during a term when the student is on co-op, tuition and fees will be charged per a student’s residency status and college, based on the part-time per credit hour rate.
A student can see his/her full and part time tuition rates and college fees here (use left-side navigation menu to click into the relevant academic year):

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Living Arrangements

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Students will stay in the home of a working-class Guatemalan host family in Ciudad Vieja, a small town about twenty minutes from Antigua. As part of an immersion experience, you will eat breakfast and dinner with your host family, and they will provide a packed lunch for you every day. You will typically be sharing a bedroom with one other UC student.

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Getting There


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Students are responsible for booking and paying for your own plane ticket, and you will be informed in advance of the day and time you need to arrive. Airfares vary enormously depending on the departure city and on the rate you are able to find on any given day. To give you an idea of the potential cost, for the Summer 2017 program students’ ticket prices ranged from $540 to $890. Transportation to and from the airport in Guatemala City is included in the base cost of the program.

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Program Costs

2018 Estimated Program Cost:
4 Weeks: ~$2,000
6 Weeks: ~$2,751

Included in Program Cost:                                                                                                                             

  • guate marketRoom and board (three meals a day)
  • Books
  • In-country transportation for program-planned activities
  • Cultural excursions/entrance fees
  • ISIC Card
  • International emergency and evacuation insurance
  • Professional translators and private guides
  • Discussions with Guest Lecturers
Not Included in Program Cost:
  • Tuition – (at your standard tuition rate)
  • International airfare
  • MLTI3000 Study Abroad Fee ($200)
  • Passport application/renewal fees (~$165)
  • Recommended/required immunization/vaccination fees (~$)
  • Some meals (~$)
  • Personal spending/souvenirs (~$)

This program has been awarded an $200 UC International Scholarship (matriculated, UC degree-seeking students only). UC International scholarship requires a minimum 2.0 GPA.

Note that both program charges and UC International scholarship will be posted separately on a student’s OneStop bill on the semester in which the course for the study abroad experience is given.  Program charges are posted shortly after students commit to the program through the online application process.  Scholarships are posted after all students 1) register for the course connected to the study abroad experience, and 2) complete all study abroad online paperwork.

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UC Financial Aid and Scholarships

For full details on using your financial aid to help pay for your study abroad experience, you should contact UC Financial Aid.

UC International awarded over $800,000 in student scholarships last year. Please refer to the UC International webpage for more information.

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Passports and Visas

A valid passport is essential to your international travel and study abroad. If you are planning to travel abroad, its best to apply for a passport now as processing times may vary. Please see the State Department's passport page for more information.

In order to obtain country-specific visa instructions and resources, refer to your host country’s embassy web page. One way to access visa information is the US Department of State’s country information page  

UC International is happy to guide UC faculty, staff and students to possible resources about visas for study abroad. Although, applying for the necessary visa for travel is the responsibility of the individual UC traveler. Entry requirements change frequently and we advise you to pay close attention to consular updates. It is your responsibility to knowing and addressing the requirements for your host study abroad destination.

Applying for a visa can be a complicated process. Some UC travelers choose to third party to assist with this process, for example Travisa or A Briggs (mention UC for a possible discount).

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Health and Safety Abroad

UC International is committed to student and faculty safety while abroad. The following are a few resources for travel abroad.

UC faculty, students and staff are responsible for their own health and safety abroad. The US Department of StateCenters for Disease Control Prevention (CDC)and International SOS are excellent resources for country specific information.

UC partners with International SOS medical and security advice. UC code is 11BCAS000010

UC students, faculty and staff can utilize International SOS in the following ways:

  • Sign up to receive email alerts for medical and security information, customizable to various locations abroad
  • Read about travel health information with medical advice, food and water safety, and cultural tips
  • Explore travel security with personal safety tips and travel risk ratings for locations abroad

UC faculty, students and staff traveling abroad should register their travel abroad through the US Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP)in case of an emergency abroad.

All UC students participating in a University of Cincinnati sanctioned or funded international travel program are required to purchase and maintain insurance while abroad. UC International partners with CISI to provide insurance for UC students.

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Contacts for More Information

Susan Sinclair
Educator Asso Prof A&S Romance Languages & Literature

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