Program Details

The INEX Summer University in Costa Rica is the premier study experience in Central America and a leading program in learning about sustainability. In 2011, for the eleventh time, INEX will send students to Costa Rica (a country renowned for its eco-touri
San Jose, Costa Rica
Program Type:
Intensive Language
Degree Level:
1-3 months

Program Overview

Program Description:
The UNESCO-awarded study abroad program on sustainable development. “A life-changing experience. Eye-opening and rewarding. I recommend INEX programs to every high-aiming student.” Lukas Mayer, Student of ISU 08.2007 A one-month academic program at ULACIT University packed with courses on sustainability, Spanish language training, workshops with international organizations, excursions, travel and opportunities for contextual learning in Costa Rica.

The INEX Summer University in Costa Rica is the premier study experience in Central America and a leading program in learning about sustainability. In 2011, for the eleventh time, INEX will send students to Costa Rica (a country renowned for its eco-tourism and natural beauty) and immerse them into the Latin American beauty of social, ecological and economical development. Two academic courses at Universidad Latinoamericana de Ciencia y Tecnología (ULACIT) form the core of the program. There the participants are introduced to concepts and implications of sustainability and address the role of business, policies and impacts on modern life. Expected guest speakers for these sessions include Costa Rica’s Minister of the Environment Roberto Dobles and other high level individuals. Credits received can be transferred to students’ home universities. Knowledge exchanges with international organizations (UNESCO, FES) and the corporate world add a localized perspective and best-practice examples. Contextual learning is facilitated through thematically fitting excursions, social activities and weekend travel to the most exciting places in Costa Rica. This includes, amongst others, visits to coffee and banana plantations, national parks and rain forest reserves on both coasts. Canopy rides through the rain forest and rafting down Pacuare river will serve as bonding experiences and prepare participants for team work in later paths. For a better understanding of the country and its people all students will live with host families, enjoy typical food and be part of the local community. Intercultural training and an intensive Spanish language training at ULACIT guarantee improved skills for interaction.

INEX – the International Network for Educational Exchange is an Austrian social enterprise, working in the field of Education for Sustainable Development (ESD). INEX operates based on a network structure, with a multi-stakeholder Advisory Board, an Ambassador Network and Alumni Association. Partners include Universities, research institutes and think tanks, companies from various industries, supranational organizations, ministries and NGOs. INEX is focusing on the attainment of the United Nations Millennium Development Goals and works within the framework of the UNESCO Decade for Education on Sustainable Development. FIELD OF WORK: EDUCATION FOR SUSTAINABLE DEVELOPMENT Sustainable development meets the needs of the present generation without compromising future generations’ ability to meet their needs. Education for Sustainable Development is therefore seen as a tool for good governance that promotes informed decision-making and democracy embracing the values of solidarity and mutual respect. It builds the necessary capacity through critical reflection, awareness and empowerment employing new methods and tools that bring about a shift in people’s mindsets towards sustainable lifestyles. Through a holistic approach it integrates ecological, economic and social perspectives, while referring to a large number of key themes such as poverty alleviation, citizenship, human rights, gender equity, cultural diversity, rural and urban development, production and consumption patterns, corporate responsibility, environmental protection, biodiversity etc. To cover this broad range of sectors and levels it is considered a “life-wide” process addressed through formal and non-formal learning as well as vocational education and training.
Setting Description:
There is simply no better place on earth than Costa Rica to fully embrace, feel and live what sustainable development is about – and how it can positively change society and the world around us. „Costa Rica is the first country to bet its entire economic future on the power of sustainable development.” David Tenenbaum, the Greening of Costa Rica, in Technology Review (published by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology) Costa Rica is famous for its natural beauty with an immense variety of flora and fauna. It is known for its love for peace and Nobel prize awarded former president Oscar Arias. And it is also the country most famed for its unparalleled efforts towards sustainable development. And still Costa Rica is a developing country facing many social and economic challenges… that’s why we chose it as the perfect place to study – and to support the locals in their endeavor towards sustainability. Although serving as a role model there is much more that can be done with our hel