Gaining Global Experience

Cuenca, Ecuador

This summer marks the start of two new study abroad options for Spanish students, and one of these is a summer in Cuenca, Ecuador. ISU Global Internships and Language: Summer in Cuenca Ecuador seeks to fulfill a WLC department goal to “educate and prepare globally informed and cultural-competent citizens who understand the reciprocal impact of the U.S. and the world.” This is a five-week program in which students will live, work, and study in Cuenca, Ecuador. While there, students will get to live with a host family in order to participate in Ecuadorian Culture and improve their language abilities through emersion. Students will also see how Ecuadorian culture interacts with the professional world as they intern with a local business or community organization. These internships are intended to be in the student’s primary major so that their experience in both Spanish and their major can be applied.

We checked in with one of the program’s coordinators, Prof. Marta Vessoni-Lence, to hear her take on the program. She tells us, “The ISU Global Internships and Language Program provides students with a unique experience to develop cultural competence as global professionals. The program combines coursework with experiential learning. Students will complete a 120-hour guided internship related to their primary major. They will be placed in local business, community-based organization or government institution where they can apply the knowledge and skills they’ve already acquired at Iowa State while enhancing their language proficiency at the same time. They will have the opportunity to be involved in specific projects related to their primary major and will present a final report. The internship will be complemented with a Spanish course, homestay with an Ecuadorian family and guided tours that will allow students to gain cultural and global competencies at the professional and personal level. In sum, we encourage you to definitely consider this program if you want to be competitive in an increasingly global workplace!”

To learn more about the program, head over to its ISU Abroad website. Catch you in Cuenca this summer!