David’s June trip to the Valley of Mexico

ICADS30th Anniversary, Amphibians, Communities, Conservation, Culture, Development, Education, Environment, Language, Latin America, National Park, Nature, Pollution, Reptiles, Research, rivers, Spanish, Study Abroad, Sustainability, Tips for travel

By David Norman It was only a nine day trip that Eunice and I took to Mexico, D.F., but it was amazing.   Even though there are incredible numbers of people packed into that relatively flat plateau, we saw some positive initiatives worth commenting on.  We crammed into the city’s metro system that moves over 5 million people a day, and … Read More

ICADS and Northwestern University promote the Community Based Research Fellows Program (CBR)

ICADS30th Anniversary, Communities, Conservation, Costa Rica, Culture, Development, Education, Environment, Family planning, Health care system, Internship, Justice, Language, Latin America, Nature, Pollution, Research, rivers, Spanish, Study Abroad, Sustainability, Teenagers

By ICADS The summer, about to come to an end, brought to ICADS many friends, including students and teachers from different American universities. Together with Northwestern University’s Buffet Institute for Global Studies, ICADS hosted a cohort of the Community Based Research Fellows Program (CBR).  Through this partnership, we received three students, Natalie, Bethany and Sam, who developed a 9-week community-driven research … Read More

A Day of Hammocks and Smiles

ICADS30th Anniversary, Culture, Development, Health care system, Internships, Justice, Language, Latin America, Nicaragua, Spanish, Study Abroad

By Gabriel Vargas, ICADS Professor A few summers ago, ICADS students from the Pitzer Summer Health Program in Costa Rica had the opportunity to visit an inspiring restaurant and organization in Granada, Nicaragua. The Centro Social Tío Antonio is a non-governmental organization founded in 2007 to provide job and education opportunities to young Nicaraguan men and women. In the Centro, our students had lunch at Café … Read More

Field Guide to the Reptiles and Amphibians – Santa Rosa – Palo Verde, Costa Rica. By David Norman

ICADSAmphibians, Conservation, Costa Rica, Development, Environment, ICADS, Internships, Latin America, National Park, Nature, Nicaragua, Reptiles, Research, Study Abroad, Sustainability

Our dear Professor David Norman shares his “Reptile and Amphibian Field Guide for the Santa Rosa and Palo Verde National Parks in Costa Rica”. This lively and interactive document will help you to enjoy even more these beautiful Costa Rican parks. You can download it here:  Field Guide to the Reptiles and Amphibians -Santa Rosa – Palo Verde – Costa Rica

My Job as Spanish Coordinator: Gaby’s Experience

ICADSICADS, Language, Spanish

Gabriela has been part of the ICADs team for over a decade, but her career began long before that. She has a lifelong passion for teaching Spanish and sharing Latin American culture with students. Her dedication to this cross-cultural teaching and learning is apparent in her work at ICADS. Gabriela is always looking to improve ICADS’ program so every student … Read More

Cultural and Educational Activities: Community Service

ICADSCosta Rica, Environment, Latin America

By Roxana Rojas, ICADS Program Coordinator   At ICADS, we want to make every student’s visit a life-changing experience.  We plan different cultural and educational activities in the afternoons as a way for students to understand better the history, values, beliefs, language, customs, and national identity of the country they are visiting. Culture is very important for us.  We want … Read More

Costa Rican Expressions You Need to Know

ICADSCosta Rica, Language, Spanish, Study Abroad

Several weeks ago, we shared someuseful Costa Rican words for your next visit to our country.  However, “Tico language” also includes slang phrases. In Costa Rica idioms can be endless, and they vary according to the region.  We asked some of our Costa Rican friends to tell us the most common phrases they use.  Take a look!   This is an … Read More

Living with a Costa Rican Family


When studying abroad, sometimes it’s stressful to live with a family that has different customs, and speaks a different language. At ICADS we know this, so today we want to share with you some general information and rules about the Costa Rican families which are part of ICADS community.   Students have access to basic appliances such as stoves, washing … Read More

8 Costa Rican Words You Need to Know

ICADSCosta Rica, Culture, Language, Spanish, Tips for travel

If you are planning to visit Costa Rica any time soon we strongly suggest learning some of the country’s most common words. Today we’ll share eight, but trust us, there’s more. While we may give you the definitions to these words, make sure to also remember that your tone, pitch, and body language are essential to understand what people are … Read More

Cultural and Educational Activities: Visiting the National Museum


ICADS’ program, in addition to the language class, has a series of educational and cultural activities during the afternoons, that helps foreigner students to understand better Costa Rican’s history, its culture, its beliefs, its values, the way it is, its folklore, the national symbols that identify, economic and political aspects of the country, its economic and social development. All of … Read More