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Mexico Fall Semester

Dates

September 7 – December 7, 2019

Cost

$7,925 + airfare
Scholarships & Financial Aid

Subjects

Anthropology, Biology, Economics, Environmental Studies, Honors, Latin American Studies, Spanish

Deadlines

April 1: Apply Early & Save $100
April 15: Regular Deadline 

Program Overview

The KIIS Mexico Fall Semester program in the city of Merida provides an ideal setting for you to study Spanish and learn about Mexican art, culture, ecology, and history. During the 92-day program, you take KIIS-specific courses at Habla, a private school in a comfortable neighborhood of Merida. KIIS Mexico Fall Semester alumni often cite the homestay experience as the hallmark of the program. You learn firsthand about daily life in Mexico, its institutions, social customs, and cultural practices. Participants typically take part in family activities, going to parties and outings, attending cultural and sporting events, and sometimes taking weekend trips with their families.

Language Requirement: None, the program is open to participants at all Spanish-language levels.

Accommodations: Homestay, 1-2 people per home.

Orientation: Mandatory orientation in August 2019. See Orientation for more information.

Program Coordinator: Maria Canning

Courses

You may enroll in 4 courses for a total of 12 credit hours. You must take the required course, Water Equity in the Yucatan and at least one Spanish course. Spanish majors may select courses in both English and Spanish.

 

BIOL 475 Topics: Water Equity in the Yucatan

Required Course. An introduction to the Yucatan’s history, culture, governmental policy, and environment within the context of water equity. The course will explore 1) hydrology of the region, 2) how Pre-Columbians revered water and developed sophisticated strategies to cope with limited water resources, 3) how modern pressures and policies are challenging to balance access to safe drinking water, irrigation for agriculture, and tourism, and 4) address how the Yucatan might adapt to further stresses associated with climate change. Taught in English.

BIOL 475 Topics: Tropical Ecology

You will explore the various tropical bioregions, from the dry-tropical deciduous forests to wet tropical forests to understand why the tropics are so biodiverse (environmental conditions, geological history, evolution, and ecological interactions). You will also address questions of sustainability, threats to the region’s biodiversity, and potential shifts associated with climate change. This course will include lectures, scientific paper discussions, student-designed observational research projects using field methods in ecology, and field trips. Taught in English.

HON 300 / IDST 350: Ancient Maya Culture

You learn the principles and processes behind the development of universal high culture, using the example of the ancient Maya. The course traces the cultural development of the Maya prior to the conquest by Europeans in the 16th century. Taught in English.

HON 300 / IDST 350: Human Ecology in the Yucatan

This course will focus on the sustained needs for human population: food and fiber, shelter, water, and waste disposal. You will consider how technology and the services of natural ecosystems collaborate to provide these services in the Yucatan and compare them to strategies used elsewhere. Taught in English.

HON 300 / IDST 350: Merida's Economy: Past, Present and Future

Merida is the cultural and financial capital of the Yucatan state. In this course, you will be introduced to Merida’s political, cultural, and economic history in order to understand the present state of Merida’s economy. You will compare and contrast the economies of Merida and Mexico and analyze their economic and development challenges. Taught in English.

SPAN 101: Elementary Spanish I

A beginning course designed to develop skills in understanding, speaking, reading and writing and to provide cultural insights.

SPAN 201: Intermediate Spanish I

A systematic review of Spanish grammar and development of reading skills. Prerequisite SPAN 102 or equivalent.

SPAN 202: Intermediate Spanish II

Further review of Spanish grammar and development of reading skills. Prerequisite SPAN 201 or equivalent.

SPAN 370: Spanish Conversation

Provides you with situational practice of spoken Spanish, emphasizing vocabulary building and increasing proficiency, and a review of basic grammar structures. Prerequisite: SPAN 202 or equivalent.

SPAN 372: Latin American Civilization and Culture

Survey of the historical and cultural background of Latin America and its people from pre-Columbian times to the present. It also will afford you the opportunity to use and expand your Spanish vocabulary in expressing your thoughts and opinions, both orally and in writing.

Your KIIS application essay (uploaded when you apply online) should be written in Spanish if you are enrolling in 300-level Spanish courses, or written in English if you are enrolling in 100/200-level Spanish courses.

All KIIS course credit is awarded by Western Kentucky University. Prior to your KIIS program, please speak with your home campus academic advisor and/or study abroad office to determine course equivalencies. Grades will be transferred to your home institution in mid-August after the completion of the program. Course offerings are subject to change according to enrollment. For more information, visit Transcripts & Grades.

Program Excursions

The program includes a week-long out of country excursion and a multi-day excursion to another region in Mexico. The excursion locations are subject to change year to year.

Mexico City

Students visiting Mexico City (multi-day excursion) experience one of the world’s largest cities with a history dating back to 1325. The historic centre, the Zocalo, where once stood the pyramids and palaces of Moctezuma, now paves the way to the National Palace. Outside of the city, Teotihuacan, City of the Gods, stands as Mexico’s biggest ancient city and the site of the striking Pyramid of the Sun and Pyramid of the Moon.

Belize

Students visiting Belize (multi-day excursion) experience a culturally diverse and mixed race country with one foot in Latin America and the other in the Caribbean. There is the creole/(Afro-European mixture) population as well as the native Maya people. Attractions include exploring the lush jungles with exotic plants and animals, swimming and snorkeling in the Caribbean sea with its attractive reefs, and visiting the Mayan ruins.

Cuba

Students visiting Cuba (full week excursion) have the opportunity to experience the cities of Havana, Trinidad, Cienfuegos, Santa Clara, which few Americans have been fortunate to visit.

Riviera Maya

Students visiting the Riviera Maya (multi-day excursion) in the state of Quintana Roo experience local living in the quiet fishing villages away from the tourist bustle in this region.

Playa Progreso

We visit this beach by public bus in order to familiarize ourselves with the public transportation system in Yucatán. Playa Progeso is a well-known local beach and has long been a crucial link to the world. Its foundation came about due to necessity. During the height of the henequen (sisal) export era, the port town of Sisal (west of Progreso) was the main cargo departure point (Yucatan Today Magazine).

Mérida, Mexico Neighborhood Walk

We visit the historic downtown of Mérida to experience the market, colonial architecture, and amazing local food.  One of the highlights is a visit to the Palacio del Gobierno, which houses murals depicting the regional history of the Maya and Spanish, painted by local artist Fernando Castro Pacheco.

Cenote Ik Kil

Students love swimming in this dreamlike cenote, a beautiful underground swimming hole rich with lush green vines. Cenotes were spiritually important to the Maya, and there are many theories about their significance to death rituals, fertility offerings, and a connection to the underworld.

What's Included

Program Cost: $7,925

Earn up to 12 Credit Hours

Airport Transfers in Merida

Accommodations

Two Meals per Day

Groups Excursions & Transport

Security Evacuation Protection

Medical Insurance

To help you budget, keep in mind that you are responsible for the cost of your textbooks, passport fees (approx. $135), some meals ($75/month), city bus transportation ($75/month), personal expenses (approx. $300/month) and any fees from your college/university.

Although KIIS tries to foresee all possible expenses in formulating program fees, please note that dramatic fluctuations in foreign currency valuations and/or airline surcharges may affect the total cost of the program.

No Group Flight

Estimated Cost:  $550 – $650

The Mexico Fall Semester program does not offer a group flight option. You will purchase your own round-trip airfare. If you fly into the Merida airport (MID), you will be met at the airport and transported to your homestay. If you fly into Cancun (CUN), you will need to travel by bus to Merida, and will be met upon arrival in Merida.

Flights to Mexico are typically the same day. Return flights from Mexico to the USA are typically the same day. Visit Flights and Passports & Visas for more information.

Visa

The KIIS Mexico Fall Semester program is 92 days long (September 8 – December 8, 2018) and does not require a visa if you are a U.S. citizen.

Visit Flights and Passports & Visas for more information.

Student Voices

Take Your Education Further

Category:

Description

Dates

September 7 – December 7, 2019

Cost

$7,925 + airfare
Scholarships & Financial Aid

Subjects

Anthropology, Biology, Economics, Environmental Studies, Honors, Latin American Studies, Spanish

Deadlines

April 1: Apply Early & Save $100
April 15: Regular Deadline 

Program Overview

The KIIS Mexico Fall Semester program in the city of Merida provides an ideal setting for you to study Spanish and learn about Mexican art, culture, ecology, and history. During the 92-day program, you take KIIS-specific courses at Habla, a private school in a comfortable neighborhood of Merida. KIIS Mexico Fall Semester alumni often cite the homestay experience as the hallmark of the program. You learn firsthand about daily life in Mexico, its institutions, social customs, and cultural practices. Participants typically take part in family activities, going to parties and outings, attending cultural and sporting events, and sometimes taking weekend trips with their families.

Language Requirement: None, the program is open to participants at all Spanish-language levels.

Accommodations: Homestay, 1-2 people per home.

Orientation: Mandatory orientation in August 2019. See Orientation for more information.

Program Coordinator: Maria Canning

Courses

You may enroll in 4 courses for a total of 12 credit hours. You must take the required course, Water Equity in the Yucatan and at least one Spanish course. Spanish majors may select courses in both English and Spanish.

 

BIOL 475 Topics: Water Equity in the Yucatan

Required Course. An introduction to the Yucatan’s history, culture, governmental policy, and environment within the context of water equity. The course will explore 1) hydrology of the region, 2) how Pre-Columbians revered water and developed sophisticated strategies to cope with limited water resources, 3) how modern pressures and policies are challenging to balance access to safe drinking water, irrigation for agriculture, and tourism, and 4) address how the Yucatan might adapt to further stresses associated with climate change. Taught in English.

BIOL 475 Topics: Tropical Ecology

You will explore the various tropical bioregions, from the dry-tropical deciduous forests to wet tropical forests to understand why the tropics are so biodiverse (environmental conditions, geological history, evolution, and ecological interactions). You will also address questions of sustainability, threats to the region’s biodiversity, and potential shifts associated with climate change. This course will include lectures, scientific paper discussions, student-designed observational research projects using field methods in ecology, and field trips. Taught in English.

HON 300 / IDST 350: Ancient Maya Culture

You learn the principles and processes behind the development of universal high culture, using the example of the ancient Maya. The course traces the cultural development of the Maya prior to the conquest by Europeans in the 16th century. Taught in English.

HON 300 / IDST 350: Human Ecology in the Yucatan

This course will focus on the sustained needs for human population: food and fiber, shelter, water, and waste disposal. You will consider how technology and the services of natural ecosystems collaborate to provide these services in the Yucatan and compare them to strategies used elsewhere. Taught in English.

HON 300 / IDST 350: Merida's Economy: Past, Present and Future

Merida is the cultural and financial capital of the Yucatan state. In this course, you will be introduced to Merida’s political, cultural, and economic history in order to understand the present state of Merida’s economy. You will compare and contrast the economies of Merida and Mexico and analyze their economic and development challenges. Taught in English.

SPAN 101: Elementary Spanish I

A beginning course designed to develop skills in understanding, speaking, reading and writing and to provide cultural insights.

SPAN 201: Intermediate Spanish I

A systematic review of Spanish grammar and development of reading skills. Prerequisite SPAN 102 or equivalent.

SPAN 202: Intermediate Spanish II

Further review of Spanish grammar and development of reading skills. Prerequisite SPAN 201 or equivalent.

SPAN 370: Spanish Conversation

Provides you with situational practice of spoken Spanish, emphasizing vocabulary building and increasing proficiency, and a review of basic grammar structures. Prerequisite: SPAN 202 or equivalent.

SPAN 372: Latin American Civilization and Culture

Survey of the historical and cultural background of Latin America and its people from pre-Columbian times to the present. It also will afford you the opportunity to use and expand your Spanish vocabulary in expressing your thoughts and opinions, both orally and in writing.

Your KIIS application essay (uploaded when you apply online) should be written in Spanish if you are enrolling in 300-level Spanish courses, or written in English if you are enrolling in 100/200-level Spanish courses.

All KIIS course credit is awarded by Western Kentucky University. Prior to your KIIS program, please speak with your home campus academic advisor and/or study abroad office to determine course equivalencies. Grades will be transferred to your home institution in mid-August after the completion of the program. Course offerings are subject to change according to enrollment. For more information, visit Transcripts & Grades.

Program Excursions

The program includes a week-long out of country excursion and a multi-day excursion to another region in Mexico. The excursion locations are subject to change year to year.

Mexico City

Students visiting Mexico City (multi-day excursion) experience one of the world’s largest cities with a history dating back to 1325. The historic centre, the Zocalo, where once stood the pyramids and palaces of Moctezuma, now paves the way to the National Palace. Outside of the city, Teotihuacan, City of the Gods, stands as Mexico’s biggest ancient city and the site of the striking Pyramid of the Sun and Pyramid of the Moon.

Belize

Students visiting Belize (multi-day excursion) experience a culturally diverse and mixed race country with one foot in Latin America and the other in the Caribbean. There is the creole/(Afro-European mixture) population as well as the native Maya people. Attractions include exploring the lush jungles with exotic plants and animals, swimming and snorkeling in the Caribbean sea with its attractive reefs, and visiting the Mayan ruins.

Cuba

Students visiting Cuba (full week excursion) have the opportunity to experience the cities of Havana, Trinidad, Cienfuegos, Santa Clara, which few Americans have been fortunate to visit.

Riviera Maya

Students visiting the Riviera Maya (multi-day excursion) in the state of Quintana Roo experience local living in the quiet fishing villages away from the tourist bustle in this region.

Playa Progreso

We visit this beach by public bus in order to familiarize ourselves with the public transportation system in Yucatán. Playa Progeso is a well-known local beach and has long been a crucial link to the world. Its foundation came about due to necessity. During the height of the henequen (sisal) export era, the port town of Sisal (west of Progreso) was the main cargo departure point (Yucatan Today Magazine).

Mérida, Mexico Neighborhood Walk

We visit the historic downtown of Mérida to experience the market, colonial architecture, and amazing local food.  One of the highlights is a visit to the Palacio del Gobierno, which houses murals depicting the regional history of the Maya and Spanish, painted by local artist Fernando Castro Pacheco.

Cenote Ik Kil

Students love swimming in this dreamlike cenote, a beautiful underground swimming hole rich with lush green vines. Cenotes were spiritually important to the Maya, and there are many theories about their significance to death rituals, fertility offerings, and a connection to the underworld.

What's Included

Program Cost: $7,925

Earn up to 12 Credit Hours

Airport Transfers in Merida

Accommodations

Two Meals per Day

Groups Excursions & Transport

Security Evacuation Protection

Medical Insurance

To help you budget, keep in mind that you are responsible for the cost of your textbooks, passport fees (approx. $135), some meals ($75/month), city bus transportation ($75/month), personal expenses (approx. $300/month) and any fees from your college/university.

Although KIIS tries to foresee all possible expenses in formulating program fees, please note that dramatic fluctuations in foreign currency valuations and/or airline surcharges may affect the total cost of the program.

No Group Flight

Estimated Cost:  $550 – $650

The Mexico Fall Semester program does not offer a group flight option. You will purchase your own round-trip airfare. If you fly into the Merida airport (MID), you will be met at the airport and transported to your homestay. If you fly into Cancun (CUN), you will need to travel by bus to Merida, and will be met upon arrival in Merida.

Flights to Mexico are typically the same day. Return flights from Mexico to the USA are typically the same day. Visit Flights and Passports & Visas for more information.

Visa

The KIIS Mexico Fall Semester program is 92 days long (September 8 – December 8, 2018) and does not require a visa if you are a U.S. citizen.

Visit Flights and Passports & Visas for more information.

Student Voices

Take Your Education Further

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