Help Amari Get to Costa Rica!

Amari Dior Jackson Start Date: Oct 28, 2013 - End Date: Jan 4, 2014
  • Various Locations, Multiple Countries

My Travel Story

by: Amari Dior Jackson Start Date: Oct 28, 2013 - End Date: Jan 4, 2014

¡Hola, pura vida!

It has been my dream to study abroad since high school and the time has finally come! I want to study abroad in San José, Costa Rica this spring. Please help this dream of mine come true!

As an incentive to help me with my trip, I will be offering rewards to those funders who donate a certain amount! Once a level is reached, you will receive your gift according to the following listed below. This applies to all who donate non-anonymously. Thanks again and happy funding!

$25- You'll receive a personal thank you email from me and be listed as a funder of my trip on my blog (which I will be updating while abroad).

$50- I'll send you a postcard from the city I will soon be calling my second home- San José!

$100 - You'll receive a picture collage from my travels and excursions while abroad.

$200- You will receive a personal painting or sketching (made by me) of one of the most memorable places I experience while abroad.

$250 – I will cook you a traditional Costa Rican dinner and tell you all about my experience once I arrive home!

$300 and more- I will prepare a special gift basket of all the rewards listed above with an additional surprise item from Costa Rica!

About the program: I will depart for San José, Costa Rica on January 5th, 2014. Once arriving in San José, I would go through a two-day orientation. After this I would finally be able to move in with my host family, which is where I will be staying for the next three months. While in Costa Rica, I plan on taking 4 courses pertaining to Health Care and Physical Therapy and 1 Spanish speaking course! There are many group field trips to attend such as: the Manuel Antonio National Park, the Poás Volcano and La Paz Waterfall, the Arenal Volcano, Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, excursions to Granada, Managua, Nicaragua, and Bocas del Toro, Panama. I also want to find some time to take tropical dance lessons and visit the local attractions like museums, markets, the theater, and concerts. I am so excited for this once-in-a-lifetime adventure to begin and will probably be a little sad when I fly home at the end of March.

My Inspiration: Studying abroad in Costa Rica would enrich my life in more ways than I can count. I would be gaining experience that I could never attain while living in the United States. Traveling to a country where the language you’ve known all your life is no longer the primary form of communication is a task in itself. I have been attempting to learn Spanish for about 2 years and am not at all fluent yet. Therefore, I believe the best way to change this is to completely immerse myself into Spanish culture. This will not only force me to learn the language, but also to adapt to the Costa Rican way of life - something that I am completely convinced I will be able to do.

I have very limited traveling experience and have never been outside of the United States.  Learning in a classroom environment is important, but traveling will help shape me into a more well-rounded individual capable of adapting, connecting and problem-solving like never before. I am very much looking forward to this opportunity and would appreciate any help to make this dream a reality for me!

  • Various Locations, Multiple Countries


  • The Program’s Exciting Excursions

    Hey Family and Friends! So, here's just a bit more info about my program and the excursions I will be taking during my study abroad.

    3-day visit to Manuel Antonio National Park and Beach (Included in fee)

    Day 1: Afternoon departure by bus to Manuel Antonio

    Day 2: A day of leisure to enjoy the park and beaches: white sands and warm water surrounded by lush vegetation.

    Day 3: A last look at the flora and fauna of the coast. Early evening return to San José. (Includes accommodations, transportation and breakfast)

    Day trip to Poas Volcano and La Paz Waterfall (Included in fee):

    Early departure by bus to Poas Vocano. On arrival, students will walk to the old Crater Lake and possibly see the crater. Students visit the butterfly and bird house before a delicious buffet lunch. In the afternoon, students walk through the waterfall trails to see humming birds and frogs before returning to San José.

    3-day visit to Granada and Managua, Nicaragua ($375)

    Day 1: We have an early morning departure to the Nicaraguan border. Continue on to Granada, a beautiful colonial town south of Managua. Stop at Lake Apollo; one of the oldest lakes in Nicaragua, formed after a volcanic eruption. Check in to our hotel and then explore old Granada with other students before enjoying dinner with the group.

    Day 2: We will visit Managua, the country’s capital, where I’ll see the main park and museums and visit the “Lung of Managua” a nature reserve where you can zip line across a crater. Later we will visit Masaya Volcano, hiking up to the top for a better view. In the afternoon we visit Masaya City Market for souvenir shopping before returning to Granada to enjoy a dinner on Calle Calzada, a palm tree lined boulevard where I will enjoy watching the street performers.

    Day 3: We will take a tour of Granada city on “volantas” or horse carriages then take an island tour of an archipelago formed by 365 small volcanic islands. Then start our trip back to San José.

    3-day excursion to Bocas del Toro, Panama ($345)

    Day 1: Early departure from San José, stopping for breakfast in a little town about an hour before the border. After passing through border patrol, head to Almirante Bay where we will board a boat to Isla Colon in Bocas and check in to the hotel. Take a boat tour to Starfish Beach; a beautiful beach full of starfish! Enjoy a barbecue lunch on the beach and a free afternoon.

    Day 2: After breakfast, head out to Dolphin Bay and be on the lookout for dolphins! Snorkel amongst brightly colored tropical fish at Coral Key before a relaxing lunch. In the afternoon, visit Rana Roja Beach on Bastimento Island, home to the tiny venomous red frogs. Free afternoon at the beach before returning to the hotel for dinner with the group.

    Day 3: Leave Isla Colon and head to Changuinola, where we’ll have breakfast, before a leisurely return to Costa Rica, where lunch will be waiting for us before heading back to San José.