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Programs : Brochure

  • Locations: Cahuita, Costa Rica; Estimated Travel Day to/from the US, -; Guacimo, Costa Rica; La Fortuna, Costa Rica; Manzanillo, Costa Rica; Pocora, Costa Rica; San Jose, Costa Rica; Zarcero, Costa Rica
  • Program Terms: Spring Break
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Restrictions: OSU applicants only
  • Budget Sheets: Spring Break
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Fact Sheet:
Language of Instruction: English Minimum GPA Requirement: 2.0
Housing Option: Homestay, Hotel/Hostel Areas of Study: Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, Geography, History, Spanish and Portuguese
Rank/Class Status: 1-First-year Student, 2-Second-year Student, 3-Third-year Student, 4-Fourth-year Student Program Type: Faculty-Led
Academic Credit: Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences Program Features: Service-Learning
Ohio State Program Contact: Kelly A. Newlon
Program Description:
CR Service Learning banner



Program CR Service tab 1

The goal of this program is to help students develop cultural awareness and problem solving skills as well as provide students the opportunity to conduct international sustainable service leaning projects. We achieve these goals through a variety of course work, including regular guided discussions of the assigned study topics, student’s experience and thoughts about the field trips, and guided tours to the cultural and historical sites, as well as conducting service learning projects and staying with local families (homestay). 

The start of this program begins in San Jose, but the group will move on to the world-famous EARTH University soon after.  A major benefit of staying at EARTH University is the interaction between the OSU and EARTH students who are from various tropical countries around the world as well as access to their many educational farms (cacao, coffee, banana, and livestock). While at EARTH, students will be able to witness the education that takes place at and prepare for their service-learning projects.  The projects take place in a partner community that EARTH is assisting through development efforts and includes a 2-3 day home stay with a local family.  Examples of past projects include building a bio-digester, creating urban gardens, constructing mobile chicken coups, assisting with school renovations, or writing project manuals in English for other English-speaking groups that visit EARTH University.  Students will eat in the cafeteria with the EARTH students and have ample opportunity to make new friends from around the world.

It isn’t all work and no play, the program will also visit Cahuita National Park, a 2,711 acre national park with hiking trails and a beach on the Caribbean coast. The plant and animal diversity in Cahuita is one of the highlights of the program. At this and other locations students will have the opportunity to hike and enjoy the beauty of Costa Rican ecosystems.  Other past tours have included Arenal Volcano, various marketplaces and historic sites throughout the country.

Upon completion of the education abroad in Costa Rica and the campus based course, students will be able to identify and analyze the impact of sustainable technology on a developing country, study practical and sustainable solutions that involve service partnerships with the local entity or community (EARTH University, Costa Rica), and synthesize the theory and practice of service-learning within a community and/or global context.

This program is offered annually.


San Jose, EARTH University (Escuela Agricultura Region Tropical Humeda) and a rural community close to EARTH University, La Fortuna, 


Students will stay in modest hotels in shared rooms for most of the program, but will also spent two nights with a host family specifically trained by EARTH University to receive guests and teach them about sustainable development in rural Costa Rica.

Resident Directors

Paul Heimberger
Department of Agricultural Communication, Education, and Leadership

Education Abroad Coordinator

Kelly Newlon



Courses and Credit CR Service tab 2

Admitted participants are required to register in 3 hours of FAES 3797 for spring 2019 for both the pre-departure portion of the course and the Costa Rica portion of the course. The course will meet on Fridays from 3:30 – 5:00 p.m. leading up to the program and once or twice after spring break.




Application Requirement CR Service tab 3

In order to be eligible to apply to this program, students must have a 2.0 Cumulative GPA, and must meet OIA's General Eligibility Requirements and Conditions for Participation. Students also must participate in an individual or group interview after the program application deadline, and details about the interview will be sent to students by the program coordinator after the program application deadline.

Please note that upon application, a $150 application fee will be assessed. The application fee will be refunded only if the applicant is not accepted or a written request to withdraw the application is submitted prior to the application deadline. 


Passports are required for every Ohio State education abroad program. For many study abroad destinations, passport information is required to apply for an entry visa (as early as 6 months prior to departure). For information about apply for a passport, go to



Program Costs CR Service tab 4

Students are responsible for paying The Ohio State University tuition plus $3,378 program fee. The program fee will include international airfare, all meals in country during the program, in country transportation and lodging, and all program related field trips. It will not include any personal expenses related to this program (e.g. passport, baggage fees etc.).

If a students withdraw or become ineligible any time 11 days after the acceptance notification, they will be held responsible for a cancellation fee. Please refer to OIA's Cancellation Policy.


Student should begin researching funding opportunities before they have been accepted into a study abroad program. Grants and Scholarship deadlines may occur before the study abroad program application deadline.



Information Sessions CR Service tab 5

Tuesday, September 11, 5-6pm, Room 133 Conference Space, Nosker House
Wednesday, September 12, Noon - 1pm, Ag Admin 247


U.S. Department of State: (travel advisories/country-specific safety information)
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: (pre-travel health guidance)

Ohio State reserves the right to change without notice any statement contained herein, concerning but not limited to rules, policies, tuition, fees, curricula, and courses. In the event of a change to an existing U.S. Department of State Travel Advisory, CDC Travel Health Notice or other risk designated criteria, the Office of International Affairs reserves the right to cancel any program prior to departure or while in progress. Discrimination against any individual based upon protected status, which is defined as age, ancestry, color, disability, gender identity or expression, genetic information, HIV/AIDS status, military status, national origin, race, religion, sex, sexual orientation, or veteran status is prohibited.


Please review this information about the Zika Virus and other pre-travel health considerations.

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring Break 2019 11/01/2018
Rolling Admission 03/09/2019 03/17/2019
NOTE: Note dates include travel.

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.

Indicates that deadline has passed

This program is currently not accepting applications.