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History Student Spending Summer in Costa Rica

A college student’s academic program is not all about sitting in a classroom, listening to lectures, and taking notes. However, much of what a student experiences, is just that. Students are also given an opportunity to further develop their skills outside the classroom through an internship.

Internships are career-based learning experiences that involve a “real world” work environment and standard workplace expectations; a career investment. They are relatively short term, may be anywhere between a few weeks to a semester; paid or unpaid, variable in schedule, frequently project-based, and career-specific.

Sarah Scism, a senior history major, is earning her internship credit this summer in Costa Rica with the Institute for Central American Development Studies (ICADS).

ICADS is a center for study, research, and analysis of Central American social and environmental issues. They focus on economic development, politics, environmental studies, sustainable development, public health, women’s issues, education, human rights, and conservation.

ICADS offers four categories of programs: three distinct study abroad programs through which students can earn academic credit toward their university degree; a summer internship program; intensive Spanish language courses designed to immerse students in the Costa Rican context; and also work with universities to create customized short-term programs. Students learn through readings, lectures, and interaction with local people in both Costa Rica and Nicaragua via internships and voluntary service.

Scism departed for Costa Rica on June 2.

“Dr. [Paul] Thompson [College of Humanities Dean] and I stumbled across the ICADS website and this opportunity while we were researching for my senior honors thesis,” she said, adding that her thesis topic “is news coverage of Hurricane Mitch from 1998, and we were looking for sources relating to Central American history.”

She didn’t know exactly what she will be doing during her internship, but the first three weeks, she will be taking intensive Spanish courses and will be free to explore some different internship placement options. After the three weeks, she will receive her placement.

She will be living with a host family in San Jose.

When asked why she chose History as her major, she said “because my history classes in high school were the most enjoyable and the most challenging. More than any other subject, history forced me to think from other perspectives and to consider why people make the choices they make.”

She says she chose Costa Rica, because ICADS is based there.

Scism says she is grateful to NGU for this type of opportunity and is thankful for her experiences while a student.

“I chose North Greenville because it offered me opportunities to be involved in so many different activities. I can run track, play in the marching and concert bands, participate in the honors program, and serve with residence life, among other things,” she said. “I was also drawn to the small class sizes and close student relationships, as well as how invested the professors are in their students' success.”

If you are still undecided about next steps in your future? Consider enrolling at NGU now for this fall. Our nationally ranked professors will help guide you in the direction that best suits your career interests. There is still time to apply and be admitted before the Fall 2018 semester begins on August 22. And you won’t believe the scholarship opportunities.

For more information about NGU, academic programs, and scholarship opportunities, visit ngu.edu/academics.


           

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