AFS Year and Semester High School Abroad in Chile

Video and Photos

Student with host family in Chile
Student with host family in Chile
Students in Chile
Students in Chile
Students in Chile
Students in Chile
Students in Chile
Students in Chile
Students in Chile
Students in Chile

About

Discover the southernmost country of the world or, as Pablo Neruda once wrote, the country made for poets. From flamingos inhabiting the world's driest desert in northern Chile, to penguin colonies indigenous to the southern Patagonia region, Chile's natural wonders will enchant you.

You'll experience the towering beauty of the Andes as you arrive in Santiago, the capital and largest city in Chile. Chile is renowned for its idyllic Lake District, dotted with snow-capped volcanoes and crystalline lakes. You will learn about Chilean culture by sharing your host family's special traditions. Local traditions are best reflected in the many festivals that take place around the country, such as the Fiestas Patrias (Independence Day).

Memories are waiting to be made as you sit in an outdoor cafe, munch on empanadas, and get to know your new friends. Chile is an ideal place to step outside of your comfort zone, become a cultural insider, and engage in an exciting new adventure.

Summer Homestay: This seven-week program is an opportunity to immerse yourself in the lifestyle and culture of Chile. Spend your summer in the Southern Hemisphere, living with a host family and learning about Chilean life and culture. There will be an emphasis on engaging with your host family and taking part in their daily activities.

In their spare time, young Chileans like to get together at friends' houses or go to movies. They also like to gather in the town square, go to parties and dance, or just hang out in the local café. Your host school may offer some after school activities that you can get involved with. Lunch is the main meal of the day and usually includes meat (beef, lamb, pork or chicken) or fish with rice or pasta and vegetables. Between 5 p.m. and 6 p.m. most people have a meal called onces, where tea or coffee is served with bread and butter or marmalade and possibly cakes or some other kind of pastry.

Highlights
  • Immerse yourself in Spanish – the best way to become fluent.
  • Make connections and memories you'll never forget with other AFS exchange students from all over the world.
  • Live with a host family to deepen your immersion and connection to Chilean culture. If you’re like most AFSers, you won’t want to leave this second family and home.
  • Catch a glimpse of a variety of landscapes, from rugged mountains to deserts, swamps, and beaches. You might even pass by Mapuche men (the indigenous people of Chile) playing chueca, an ancient game like hockey!
  • Become a global citizen. Gain intercultural communication skills. Build your college and career resume. Help create a more peaceful, understanding world.

Scholarships

AFS-USA Scholarships
AFS-USA Grants & Scholarships

The opportunity to study abroad should be available to everyone, regardless of their financial means. Annually, we award scholarships to about half of our study abroad students.

Value
$1,000 - $5,000

Questions & Answers

Reviews

100%
based on 2 reviews
  • Growth 10
  • Support 8.5
  • Fun 9.5
  • Housing 10
  • Safety 9.5
Showing 1 - 2 of 2
Default avatar
Shannen
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

My Year Abroad in Chile

While abroad a experience a range of crazy events that taught me to adapt and overcome. Once while traveling alone though the central area of my town, Rancagua, I had turned down a street I wasn't familiar with. I was approached by a woman who insisted on reading my palm. I had heard about, her type before. She was a gypsy, and I had been warned about them before, but I didn't want to be too quick to judge. I allowed her to read my palm knowing the next question would be for money or food in return, and I had about 3 dollars worth of pesos that I planned on giving her. When she finished reading my palm she ask for money, just as I had thought. I opened my purse to grab out the money and she tried to stick her hand in. I snatched it away before she could take anything and gave her the money to be on my way. She clearly wasn't about to let that happen and before I knew it another gypsy started to approach. I was frantic and didn't know what to do. My fight or flight reflex kicked in and before I knew it my feet were moving faster than my brain. I dart through an alley and onto a street and waved down the nearest taxi! I made it out safe, but boy did I learn. Always trust the wisdom of locals.

What would you improve about this program?
The cost. I think they should create more scholarship programs for those who want to participate but can't afford it.
Default avatar
Christina
10/10
Yes, I recommend this program

Amazing!

I had an absolutely amazing experience! I lived in Patagonia and my friends and my class were the highlight of my experience. Although when I arrived I understood almost nothing, my classmates and my family talked to me all the time even when I didn't understand. They taught me everything, even when it was swear words or jokes or tongue twisters that I didn't understand it helped. By the end of my time there, I couldn't imagine leaving and I didn't remember how to speak English properly. I won't lie, there were plenty of moments where it was hard for me to understand what was going on because of the cultural barriers but at the end of my exchange I felt like I was a part of the culture and now I can't wait until I can visit Chile again.

What would you improve about this program?
The only thing I would change about this program would be that I would add optional Spanish and culture courses at least at the beginning because at least for me the first month was difficult to adjust, especially since I had never spoken to a native Spanish speaker nor had I ever lived outside of the US before.

Location

Location:
Chile
Currency:
Chilian Peso
Weather:
Jan-Mar
84 F / 41 F
Apr-Jun
73 F / 30 F
Jul-Sep
66 F / 30 F
Oct-Dec
82 F / 37 F
Airports:
Comodoro Arturo Merino Benítez International
( SCL )
El Tepual Airport
( PMC )
El Loa Airport
( CJC )

If you are interested in seeing a desert that some have compared to Mars, skiing in the middle of summer, and star-gazing without pollution, Chile might just be your perfect destination. Try colorful Valparaiso, bustling Santiago, or the beautiful Patagonia region.

About AFS-USA

AFS-USA (formerly the American Field Service), a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization, is a leader in intercultural learning and offers international exchange programs in more than 40 countries around the world through independent, nonprofit AFS...