From LBCC to Costa Rica – Part 1

Photos by Sarah Rose Larson

On June 23 a team of 10 participants and two faculty embarked on an adventure to Costa Rica. While there, students will be attending the Monte Verde Institute in Monte Verde, Costa Rica — The Cloud City. Participants will be gaining college credit for Spanish language study, and some for literature credits while they study stories written by Costa Rican writers.

The Adventurers Include,

Faculty of Spanish and Department Chair of Languages – Margarita Casas

Dean of Arts, Social Science, and Humanities – Meg Roland

Those participating in the program – Andrew Hedges, Danae Fouts, Haden McConnell, Jason Pfahler, Josh Robles, Faye Thygeson, Noah Aynes, Riley Bond, Sarah Rose Larson, and LBCC Physical Sciences Faculty – Ralph Tadday.

Lead by their Monte Verde Institute Coordinator – Paola Rojas

The Beginning

The team started out with a Red Eye flight out of PDX on June 23 arriving in San Jose, Costa Rica around 10:30 AM on June 24. After passing customs and some changing into shorts for the 74° temperature, the team met up with their coordinator from the Institute Paola Rojas. Rojas is working with the team throughout their stay ensuring everything goes smoothly and everyone has what they need. 

Peacocks roam free around Sr y Sra Ese in Alajuela, Costa Rica while the team eats lunch on June 23.

Rojas and the team headed to lunch and then to the University of Peace tucked into the hills of San Jose. There the team was given a tour of the grounds and met with Ariela Fernandez, M.A. who serves as the Secretary of the Council Director at UP. Fernandez gave an excellent presentation and answered questions about peacebuilding, conflict throughout the world, and the history of peace in demilitarized Costa Rica. 

Ariela Fernandez, M.A. serves as the Secretary of the Council Director at University for Peace in San Jose. On June 23 Fernandez shared with the team what peacebuilding means, the impact it can have, as well as how the University equips students with a master’s degree designed to use. their skill set in peacebuilding throughout the world.

Upon leaving UP the team headed to their hotel for the night in San Jose where many took naps before a three-course dinner hosted by Rojas at the hotel. During dinner Rojas went over the schedule, what to expect, and safety while in Costa Rica. The team was left to rest up for an early breakfast and tour of the market in San Jose. 

Other Key Players

Oriana Mulate and Beth Lyons also played key roles in planning and organizing the study abroad trip to Costa Rica though they were unable to travel with the team. 

Make sure to check out Sarah Rose’s blog for more content!

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