The Experiment in International Living
The Experiment in International Living Programs
The program begins in the country’s capital, San José, where you learn about Costa Rican history and culture with visits to museums and markets. From there, you will visit...
The Experiment in International Living Reviews
Submitted by Ashley Ruiz - Other | September 07, 2017
This experience was honestly one of the best experiences of my life. I met many amazing people, and I really got the opportunity to explore another culture and have fun at the same time. The leaders were attentive of our needs, and easy to communicate with. Their relaxed personalities really allowed the group and I to live this experience to the fullest, because we felt comfortable being ourselves around them.
During my time in Argentina, the group and I did not stay in a town or city for more than three days which really kept everyone entertained, but also busy. It was cool to learn about many different places, and how each had their unique aspects even though all these towns were in one single country.
The community service aspect of this program was my favorite because the whole group was able to contribute equally, and the people made it fun to do. Working with a school and being able to meet the children who we do this for really made me realize how much we have in the United States, and how a work like the one we did really helps these communities.
As to my home stay, I absolutely loved my host family. From the first time I walked into that door I had a home-like feeling, and everyone welcomed me with hugs and kisses. I was able to have conversations quickly, and got to share different aspects of my own culture to them as well.
Argentina was a wonderful experience that made my summer amazing. I am planning on returning, but I could repeat this summer program, I would do it in a heartbeat.
Submitted by Cordelia - Westmoor High School | September 06, 2017
My summer in Germany was unforgettable. Every day, I was challenged, whether it be through the culture shock, group discussions, or host family activities. However, it was through each challenge that I learned new things about myself and the world around me. Having difficult conversations, stepping outside of my comfort zone, and being vulnerable allowed me to truly immerse myself in the German culture while creating strong relationships with my group.
The group dynamic was absolutely amazing. The 14 of us came from different backgrounds with different opinions and ideas but all with a passion for politics and change-making, that made for thought-provoking discussions and debates, allowing us to constantly learn from each other and think in ways that we never had before. The relationships that I've made - both German and American - are ones that have helped me realize my own capabilities as a leader and truly changed my life for the better.
The Experiment has given me a summer that I will never forget, and I strongly recommend this program to any high schooler looking to broaden their world view.
What I was able to experience in Mongolia
Submitted by Raechel - Berkeley High | September 05, 2017
Though Mongolia is one of the hardest programs for the Experiment in International Living, it is one of the most freeing and satisfying experiences of my life. By going into another country where you don't know anyone, you've never heard the language let alone speak it, you are putting yourself way out there. In this program you do that and you have to deal with different food, hygiene standards and cultural norms. This experience, which I was extremely nervous to be a part of at first, shaped me into a more open and confident person. I am not very social but I quickly became comfortable around the group I was with, learned that putting myself out in the world is beneficial and I should do it more often. I learned to make mistakes and be okay with that. I was able to put myself out there during a relatively mentally stressful first few days because I had to do that to get anywhere and not feel isolated. I also became more comfortable with people entering my "personal bubble" because in Mongolia, personal space is not a thing and don't expect them to understand what it is.
Mongolia is a very beautiful country. On the first day of orientation in the capital, Ulaanbaatar, we were told that Mongolia is known as the land of the blue sky. The sky in Mongolia is the bluest and biggest sky you could ever see. At night when you weren't in a soum center or city, you could see the Milky Way. There were animal everywhere (which was amazing.) The openness, of the people and landscape, mixed with the natural world and way of life made Mongolia one of the most freeing places mentally and physically.
Mongolia is an amazing country to visit with this program, you learn so much about yourself and a larger culture that is vastly different from the United States. You learn to better appreciate what you have and the connections you can make with strangers.
Nicaragua and Cuba was an extraordinary opportunity
Submitted by Shayna R - The Madeira School | September 02, 2017
The Nicaragua and Cuba:Arts and Social Change trip has been an extraordinary experience for me! Although not completely fluent in Spanish, I was able to lean into discomfort in my homes stays and converse with people. This program has given me a lot of space to grow individually and to develop my character! I am very grateful for the chance to go to both Nicaragua and Cuba. Learning about the distinct cultures and revolutions in each country has been very enlightening. I also cherished the moments in which we were able to have exploration time in each place. Having classes, homesteads, very supportive mentors and a very harmonious group, I was able to have a unique and beautiful experience this July as I became familiar with two very beautiful countries!
Submitted by Sienna Sahagun - Jefferson High School | September 01, 2017
Through this program, I have grown into a more passionate and aware leader. In this program, I met many new people in my group who have similar and different mentalities. Through this variety of personalities and opinions, I was able to gain more perspectives of life from others. I also got to see how passionate and determined the other attendees are - I left the program hopeful due to the fact that I knew the future was going to be full of individuals who are similar to the individuals in my group. From this impactful experience, I had the opportunity to succeed as a leader that I am meant to prosper into and also got to create life-long friendships with the most amazing people I have ever met.