Summer Study Abroad in Brazil

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A Guide to Summer Study Abroad in Brazil

Flip-flop your usual “blah” break at home with a summer in Brazil — demorou — heck yeah! Brazil’s winter is during the summer months of the northern hemisphere, but don’t worry, you’ll find no shortage of sights to see and things to do (even if your souvenir shopping spans sweatshirts AND Havaianas). The endless landscapes, wildlife species, and cultural activities will have you mesmerized. From the Sugarloaf Mountain and Memorial dos Povos Indígenas to the Brazilian barbecues and vibrant indigenous dances, there’s no time for boredom here. Kick your break into gear (like a Brazilian futebol player!) with a summer study abroad in Brazil.

Why Study Abroad in Brazil in Summer

Tropical temperatures, less rain, and fewer tourists make summer in Brazil the best time to visit. Animal loving students rejoice — you’ll spot unique species wherever you go, like toucans, capybaras, pink dolphins (!), and jaguars. From seaside cities to the Amazon Rainforest, Brazil summer programs offer courses from business and economics to environmental studies and marine biology. With short-term classes and smaller class sizes, you’ll no doubt stay engaged while having the time of your life!

Even though you do have the option to take courses in English, study abroad in Brazil in summer 2017 is the *perf* opportunity to learn the honey-smooth, rhythmic language that is Brazilian Portuguese. Their mother tongue is the sixth most-spoken language in the world, and since Brazil is one of the top ten economic powerhouses worldwide, knowing this language will give you a competitive advantage. Another bonus — Portuguese is a gateway to other romance languages, so knowing it will help you pick up Spanish, Italian, and French more quickly.


Immerse yourself in the panoramic views of red-rock canyons, waterfalls, and rainforests thanks to Brazil’s diverse landscapes. Whether you’re shaking your hips to samba or sipping a caipirinha in your free time, you’ll fall in love with the spirited atmosphere during your summer study abroad in Brazil.

São Paulo — this metropolis is situated on a plateau beyond the Serro de Mar in southeastern Brazil. Stroll through the Botanical Garden, explore the art museums, and ogle at the cathedrals’ architecture during your course-related excursions. You won’t want to miss the São Paulo Fashion Week in June, which features top designer names! Head to Rua Fernandes Silva for the São Vito Festival, which is filled with dancing, music, and food from mid-May to early July.

Rio de Janeiro — this city is a hub of some of the best and most prestigious universities in Latin America, and the mountains, Atlantic Ocean, and Amazon Forest serve as your outdoor classrooms! Set your sights on the sweeping view of the surrounding mountains and the jaw-dropping Christ the Redeemer statue. Celebrate the lives of three saints during Festa Juninas, where you can watch numerous fireworks light up the sky and warm up by the bonfires crackling in parks and squares. Foodies will love the plethora of gastronomic festivals throughout the season, with dishes like bacalhau (cod) and Mulão of Orla (seafood soup).

Florianópolis — on the Island of Santa Catarina off the coast of south Brazil lies this city, where your only assignment should be to soak up the sunshine on the sandy white beaches. Some universities even offer free bicycles, so pedal on over to the Santa Catarina Art Museum or the Estádio Orlando Scarpelli. Marvel at the Ponte Hercílio Luz suspension bridge that lights up the night sky. Meet up with your galera from class and stroll along the ecological trail towards Lagoinha do Leste, Moçambique, and Naufragado.

Tips for Summer Study Abroad in Brazil

To have an unforgettable and legal (that’s slang for “cool!) time on your Brazil summer program, keep these tips in mind. Depending on where you go in the country, the weather will vary. The northern area has a tropical, warm, and humid climate whereas in the southern area, you should expect cooler temperatures and sometimes even some snow. You’ll need sunscreen and mosquito repellent for sure though! Make sure you pack minimally and accordingly for where you go — light jackets and t-shirts are a must for Brazil summer study abroad!

While you won’t be in Brazil during the annual Brazilian Carnival, get a taste of its electric excitement at a Plataforma Samba Show in Rio de Janeiro. The live show offers a night of samba dances in colorful costumes, where you can savor the local cuts of meat all in a dynamic setting. Plus, be sure to visit Petrópolis's Winter Festival, where you’ll see ballets, operas, theatrical shows, and concerts at the Palácio de Cristal, Palácio Rio Negro, Centro Cultural Raul de Leoni, and Praça da Liberdade.

Scholarships for Study in Brazil

You’ll indeed be saving some dinheiro with a summer study abroad Brazil in because it’s during the off-season and for a shorter time period rather than a full semester. Why not get “real” with your time abroad in Brazil with some summer study scholarships, so you don’t overstretch your budget? The little extra money you save will come in handy when you need another plate of feijoada! Here’s a sneak peek at some popular scholarships available:

  • AIFS offers summer study abroad scholarships and grants that go up to $500 — one scholarship will cover 50 percent of the program costs! You’ll find scholarships based on need, merit, and diversity, all of which usually require a good GPA. The deadline for these is March 1st. 
  • IES Abroad awards summer scholarships and grants up to $1,000 based on need, diversity, and merit. Scholarship applicants need to be attending a school that is a member of the IES Abroad Consortium, so make sure you qualify before applying.
  • TEAN provides a FULL-RIDE summer scholarship up to a $26,000 value for undergraduate students. The selection criteria requires a one-page essay about what your journey would like studying abroad. Don’t miss this deadline! 

Most Brazil summer study abroad scholarships have strict requirements and deadlines, so make sure you don’t rush through the process. If you need some helpful tips and advice for available scholarships, reach out to the program coordinator, as they are a good source of information. Your bank account will thank you once you’ve received a couple of awards! Don’t forget to check out's Scholarship Directory for a more extensive list of available summer study abroad scholarships in Brazil.

Benefits & Challenges

Whether you’re a student of the arts or the sciences (or both), you have much to acquire from your summer study in Brazil. You’ll gain skills from hands-on educational experiences in an international community and learn a beautiful language that over 200 million people speak. All of this will look good on your resume and give you an edge for your career when you come back to your home country.

You may encounter some culture shock while you’re abroad in Brazil. You’ll see greetings with kisses, assertive and direct communication styles, closer proximity during conversations, and “flexible” (to put it nicely!) time scheduling while you’re there. You could get around speaking English or Spanish, but you’ll truly experience everything has to offer with some knowledge of Portuguese, which will help you feel like a local in no time!

Whether you’re learning about the traditions in fishing villages or mastering new moves at festivities, the memories you make will leave you speechless. Join the party down south by choosing to study abroad in Brazil in summer 2017!

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A Guide To
Summer Study Abroad in Brazil


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