By: Diane Román
June 04, 2020
It’s very likely that your study abroad plans for this 2020 were ruined by covid-19. Uncertainty has become our closest companion because we don’t know what’s going to happen next week, and as a consequence, we can’t really make long-term decisions.
What we know is that coronavirus is still a pandemic infecting more than 6 million people worldwide, and that the U.S. death toll has passed 100,000 , so it’s very probable that you don’t feel save traveling just yet.
The good news is that as a study abroad institution, ICADS has been looking for opportunities to continue offering study abroad experiences in Costa Rica to learn about Latin America. In this blog post we want to show you why our programs are the best option for learn from home.
Costa Rica as a case study
As we mentioned in a previous blog post, Costa Rica is one of the Latin American countries that has best handled the coronavirus crisis, not only for its public and universal healthcare system, but also for its different strategies to treat covid-19. Last week, for example, Costa Rica began using plasma treatment to fight the disease. This is an experiment that could help speed up the fight against the coronavirus, according to The Tico Times.
There are several historical junctures, events and decisions the country has made in the last 70 years that made this possible, and those are very different from other Central American countries. However, due to globalization and neocolonialism, the achievements of our welfare state are being threatened despite the good results of our public institutions dealing with the crisis.
What has happened in Costa Rica in the last 20 years? What will happen now with our public intuitions in the spotlight, and Costa Rica is being examined worldwide for their results dealing with coronavirus? These are some of the topics we discuss in our Latin American Perspectives on Social Justice and Sustainable Development classes.
ICADS has a strong commitment to the organizations where our students intern. During this time, we have been exploring with them different ideas for projects where students can be useful remotely. “It’s been hard because sometimes, organizations haven’t really imagined how an intern could be valued at this time, but after our conversations, they come up with a lot of ideas that we really want to implement” said Rosa Picado, ICADS host family coordinator and also the person in charge of internship project coordination.
Some of the internship ideas include teaching English, creating marketing materials for the organizations (such as brochures and flyers), helping out with social media, and supporting different environmental, and social projects with them.
Find out more information about ICADS’ Online Semester Seminar here.
Finally, if you think a semester program is not for you, you can be part of ICADS’ Spanish online course. Besides improving your Spanish skills, you can learn about our culture with a conversational focus. Classes are 1 hour long, and we are offering flexible schedules according to your availability. You can read here more about this program.
If you join us for Fall Semester, you will take 6 weeks of Spanish classes, so you have your practicum and classes all together!
For ICADS traveling is limited, but not the learning process. Don’t miss the chance of having a cross-cultural experience with us!
Included in our course material this semester at ICADS is a video exploring the economic challenges and pressures COVID-19 has imposed on many people in Costa Rica.
Katherine Peters is an intercultural educator, Spanish professor, and former Assistant Director of ICADS in Costa Rica. Check out and follow her new blog "New Backwater" and her reflections on her time in Costa Rica.
Even during COVID-19, here at ICADS we are still seeking to explore important social justice issues. This week, watch Javier's webinar about Costa Rican and Nicaraguan relations during the pandemic.