What is the Ecuador Study Abroad and Intern – Environmental Science and Conservation Track all about?
Environmental scientists and conservationists can spend this summer studying abroad in Ecuador at the Universidad de Cuenca. Earn credits towards your degree by taking 2 classes at the university with an Environment and Conservation focus, and improve your language skills by living with a homestay family. This summer study abroad program allows you to explore a new country’s culture and geography and brush up on your Spanish, all while progressing your education.
The Environmental and Conservation Track includes study in Cuenca for 8 weeks with an optional internship at a rescue and conservation center in the Amazon, before or after you have completed your studies. There, you will discover Ecuador’s incredible wildlife!
If your degree is focused on Latin American Studies, please check out our Latin American Studies track here!
Why Choose This Ecuador Study Abroad and Intern Program?
By studying abroad through Kaya this Summer, you can progress your studies, immerse yourself in a new culture, enhance your resume and improve your language skills. Famous for its biodiversity, there is nowhere better to focus on the environment and conservation. The experience of living, studying and working abroad allows you to grow as both a student and a global citizen.
Study Abroad Details
You will take 2 classes and earn up to 6 credits at Ecuador’s Universitad de Cuenca, while living in this beautiful city. You will arrive in Quito for Orientation, an excursion, and an introduction to local language and culture before taking a local flight to Cuenca where you will meet your host family. You will be given a tour of the city, so you can get to know your new home. During your time in Cuenca, you will have the chance to participate in two social activities per month and two excursions, in order to help you explore the area. You will also be given the option to join a local volunteer placement once a week while you study.
What classes can you take? One Spanish Class (based on your language level), plus on of the following;
– Natural Heritage of Ecuador – World Agriculture and Food Problems – Structure and Functions of Plants, Forestry and Society.
Intern Abroad Details
After your 2 months of studying abroad in Cuenca, you have the option to intern at a Wildlife Rescue Center near Puyo. The center focuses on rehabilitating animals that have been abused or trafficked, and releasing them back into the wild. Here, you will have the opportunity to interact with and help care for an amazing and diverse range of animals, whilst learning about Ecuador’s biodiversity. You will be on the front lines at the wildlife center, feeding, cleaning, repairing enclosures, or creating enrichment activities. If you are interested in veterinary science, let us know, because you may be able to learn from the resident veterinarian on-site as well.
WHY JOIN THE PROJECT
The requirements to join the Ecuador Study Abroad and Intern program are:
• Minimum GPA: 2.5
• Academic Reference
• Personal Statement
A Kaya representative will contact you upon application to get these materials. In order to establish your level of Spanish, you will be required to take a Spanish placement test to be evaluated and placed accordingly.
Where will I study while in Ecuador?
About the Location
Ecuador has an amazing mega-biodiversity with 4 regions including the Amazon basin, the high Andes, the Coast plan and the Galapagos Islands. You’ll study abroad in the UNESCO World Heritage Site of Cuenca, located in the highlands of Ecuador. Cuenca is the third-largest city in Ecuador and the economic center of the southern sierra region. Located at about 2,560 metres (8,400 feet) above sea level, it is a city known for its rich culture and colonial architecture. It is also famous for its stunning scenery; the city is surrounded by Andes mountains, offering incredible views wherever you look. During your time there, you will enjoy cool, mild weather as temperatures range between highs of 70s F and lows of 50s F.
For the first five days of orientation, you will stay at a hostel in Quito. While studying in Cuenca, you will be living with a homestay family, allowing you to experience the Ecuadorian lifestyle and sample authentic home cooked food. If you choose to extend your stay and intern, you will stay at the rescue center sharing a dorm room style with other participants on-site.
During your free time, you will have the chance to attend local concerts, cooking and salsa classes, in addition to exploring the city at your leisure. As part of your Study Abroad Program, we also organize two excursions; a trip to the Parque Nacional El Cajas and to the thermal waters from Baños de Cuenca.
Details & Costs
- Duration: 8 Week study minimum
- Cost: $7410 for 8 weeks *payments in USD only
- Requirements: Minimum GPA: 2.5 - Academic Reference - Personal Statement - Transcript
- Location: Quito and Cuenca, Ecuador
- Working hours: Depends on class schedule
- Project availability: Summer
- Arrival day: Friday June 3, 2023
What is included
- Accommodation: Hostel in Quito for 3 days on arrival and host family during your study abroad experience.
- Meals: 2 meals daily
- Flights: Round trip flights between Quito and Cuenca
- Airport: pick-up and drop off in Quito and Cuenca
- Courses: 2 courses at Universidad de Cuenca. One is a Spanish language course
- Excursions and activities
- Internet access
- Official transcript and grade report
- Support: 24-hour support
- Excursion Planning: staff helps organize weekend activities (extra fees may apply)
- Training: Pre-departure pack, on-site orientation, project induction provided, Fundraising Guide
Optional Extension for Internship Component
- Transfer to the rescue center
- Accommodation: Shared room at the rescue center
- Meals: 3 meals per day
- Training: Pre-departure pack, on-site orientation, project induction provided
- Support: 24-hour support
- Airport: Drop-off at Quito Airport
What is not included
- International Flights
- Any costs for COVID-19 PCR tests required pre-departure, in-country and upon re-entry
- Spring: January 12th – May 4th
- Fall: August 23rd – December 14th
Easy 4-step application process
Apply online and pay your application fee to apply for your space on your chosen project. Our advisors will then contact you to guide you through the next steps.
Once we’ve received your application, we’ll review your details and be in touch to arrange your informal telephone interview with your Kaya Placement Advisor.
Following your interview, we will provide you a placement offer. Once you are ready to confirm your placement and dates, you can pay your confirmation fee to book and secure your space.
When you have confirmed your project dates we'll send you your Welcome Pack and lots of other helpful information to assist you with preparing for your placement.
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