What is the program cost for 2018?
And why is the three-week immersion experience worth the ~$7,000 price tag?
Program costs include:
ALL international flights
ALL domestic travel while in Perú, flights and land travel and all other associated travel costs incurred the trip.
ALL three weeks of accomodations (hotels and homestays)
ALL but a few handfuls of meals while traveling
ALL entrance fees and activity fees (for the many included activities)
ALL tours and tour guides
ALL tips to tour guides, bus drivers, etc
TWO WEEKS of private, small group Spanish classes with professional instructors, and all class materials (workbooks, etc)
Professional staff and support on call 24/7, and the resulting peace of mind
When I landed in Mexico City on September 11, 2008, I was nothing more than a typical tourist, a monoglot American who was confined to conversations with other globetrotters, interactions with Latinos limited to gesticulations in the direction of bulging tacos and delectable desserts.
I wasn’t far removed from having willfully hibernated my brain through approximately seven years of middle-, high school and college Spanish classes, often teetering precariously on the edge of failure, sneering all the while, "Why in the world should I devote my precious mental energies to learning this gibberish?" I walked away from seven wasted years of Spanish instruction with a three phrase vocabulary, hola, gracias, and de nada. Maybe el baño too. It was disgraceful, and I'd have laughed in your face if, in those moments, you'd had the audacity to suggest I'd be a Spanish-speakin', -teachin' and -tutorin' lover of all things Latin American a mere handful of years later.
I’m not sure it’s possible to quantify the value of the Latin American immersion experience, and the lengths I came as an accidental beneficiary of the immersion experience speak directly to its almost unavoidable transformative power. First and foremost, mastering the Spanish language confers immediate access to over 400 million new people, many of whom are our neighbors, coworkers, and friends! Speaking Spanish improves dramatically your employment odds both domestically and internationally, and multilingualism is a coveted ability that distinguishes you from other college and job applicants.
Then there are the benefits of directly experiencing life abroad, developing cultural sensitivity and understanding, developing new contexts through which to interpret the world. Spending time in Latin America, amongst such inclusive and generous people, you’ll gain lifelong friends and an invaluable appreciation for and understanding of a wonderful culture that permeates our entire Western Hemisphere.
And, of course, in Perú you’ll have the privilege of exploring one of the world’s most distinctly beautiful and historically rich nations, and those vivid memories will never fade.
The dollar cost of such an extensive and thorough experience is not insignificant, especially when the (nearly all-inclusive) program has the highest standards for safety, security, and quality of experience. But the return on investment must not be understated.