Central College Abroad - Study & Intern in Mexico
90% Rating
(10 Reviews)

Central College Abroad - Study & Intern in Mexico

Merida, a city of nearly a million people, is a city of both new and old. The modern urban areas in the north part of the city stand in contrast to the historic downtown and bustling markets where you can hear the call of the elote (corn on the cob) lady and the clack of horse-drawn carts.

In Merida, Central College Abroad offers two programs – Language and Culture and Studies in Global Health. The heart of the Language and Culture program is the immersive experience in the classroom and the community that will dramatically improve your Spanish, even if it’s not your specialty. The Studies in Global Health program exposes students to a health care system different than their own and provides Spanish language preparation for a future career in health care.

  • Experience! Central College Abroad places students in internships every semester and summer. Further, Central College Abroad has gained a well-established reputation with local Mexican organizations. You can ensure you are in good hands as we find you an
  • Variety! We have internships in varying sectors available, from business administration to health care and law; you are bound to find the internship of your choice!
  • Options! If you prefer to take part in a service learning option [instead], we have dozens of volunteer opportunities available!
  • Culture! Enjoy great food, learn a new dance, and watch a local flick at a cinema in Merida.
  • Excursions! There is so much to explore in Mexico. While Central College Abroad students take courses and intern, they still have plenty of time to explore Mexico, plan trips, and mini-excursions!
Political Science
Political Science
Host Family
Online Application
Weekly Hours
Price Details
What's included:

•Guaranteed housing in Central College Abroad residence or home-stay with a local Yucatecan family. Both options include all meals (Mon-Fri and brunch on Saturday)
•Computer/internet access at the Central College Abroad residence
•Week-long orientation
•Excursions and cultural events such as a five-day trip to the state of Chiapas
•Internship and service-learning opportunities (optional)
•24-hour staff and reception
•On-site resident director and support services
•Personal Central College Abroad Adviser for pre-departure support
•Optional online pre-departure and re-entry course
•Central College Abroad Student Survival Guide and Parent handbook
•Supplemental travel insurance , including mental health coverage, emergency evacuation and more
•International student ID card provided by INEXT
•Transcript from Central College, a U.S. institution fully accredited by the Higher Learning Commission


For many students, scholarship funds make a real difference between participation and staying home. For students who attend a school that is part of Central’s cooperative council, additional scholarships are available.

Central College Abroad provides scholarship opportunities for semester and year program applicants for both Central College and non-Central students.

Scholarship applications are made after acceptance into a Central College Abroad program. Application directions and forms are accessed through an online acceptance account.

Pay attention to scholarship deadlines; some allow you to apply for the scholarship even if you have not officially been accepted to the program yet. Note that scholarship deadlines operate independently of program application deadlines.

Apply, apply, apply! It never hurts to try. Studying abroad is an experience that will enrich your undergraduate experience. Don’t let cost hold you back. Research your options so you can begin this life-changing journey!

Central College Abroad scholarship deadlines:

•March 15 — fall and year programs
•October 1 — spring programs
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Questions & Answers

Program Reviews

based on 10 reviews
  • Growth 8
  • Support 7.2
  • Fun 8.7
  • Housing 9.1
  • Safety 9.1
Showing 1 - 10 of 10
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I have and will continue to suggest students who are able to go participate in an abroad program to go for 6 weeks during the summer like I did when I studied in Merida. Not only was I provided with the opportunity to visit beautiful Mexico but I was able to obtain a rich understanding about the people and the culture. Val my program director was nothing less than awesome. I had difficulty adjusting the first couple of weeks(I got home sick)and almost had a 6 hour layover in Mexico City by myself (which freaked me out). Valerie helped me immensely in both situations. I never felt unsafe and was encouraged to step outside of my comfort zone to explore the country around me for help was never more than a phone call away. Thank you Central College for allowing me to have an experience I otherwise would have never been able to afford.

Yes, I recommend
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Home, Sweet Merida

I was ecstatic to finally meet the other 15 students at the Houston airport to begin our 5 months together in Merida, Mexico! Everyone was wired, exhausted, and eager to bond with one another within seconds of meeting one another. We were all happy go lucky, excited to be in a new place with all new faces, when I realized I was actually holding back the tears with every ounce of energy I had. I was as homesick as they come within 24 hours of arriving in Mexico. I knew I wanted to experience this, and I knew I would love it if I did, but it was the hardest thing I have ever done. All I could think about was the closest familiar face was thousands of miles away and I wouldn't be seeing anyone I knew for 108 days. Within 10 days, I was completely over being homesick and ready to take on any and every adventure with full energy. I absolutely flourished and never wanted to leave.

Yes, I recommend
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Merida is GREAT!

The entire semester was a blast! We went on some amazing trips--the most memorable were the Cenotes (bodies of underground water that are crystal clear and beautiful!) and the mayan ruins sites. We also had a great time in the city of Merida. We loved going down to El Centro and walking around and shopping and just enjoying the city. The night life was great (although I wasn't super into that), but there was a lot to offer everyone! The city is VERY safe--I never felt like I was ever in any danger. Everything is very cheap in Mexico (food, activities, trips, etc) so it's definitely the place to go if you don't have a huge budget. Classes were great--in some I was challenged and not so much in others (but who's complaining on that one??). Overall it was an incredible experience and I would LOOOOVE to go back!

Yes, I recommend
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between the cenotes, ruin sites, the ocean, the eco reserves, the wild life, the beautiful colonial cities of Merida and Villadolide there is more then enough to fill your time with places to go and things to see... O and eat every type of food you are offered.... you won't be let down.

Yes, I recommend
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Merida Mexico Fun

The Merida Program was a lot of fun. We did a lot of group activities like going to Chichen Itza and going on a five day trip to Chiapas. While we did these things, we learned a lot about the different aspects of Mexican culture and history. I really enjoyed doing all of these things. Besides that, Merida is a large city full of great things to do and being half an hour from the beach was fantastic. Every weekend my friends and I would at least spend one day at Progreso. It was a great time

Even though it was a lot of fun, I did not really get much academically from this program. The classes were ridiculously easy and there wasn't a lot of support from the director to push yourself. I felt like when we had problems with what we were learning, we just had to deal with it and suffer from boredom.

Yes, I recommend
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Make an effort

In order for my Spanish to improve, I had to make friends with local Mexicans, outside of the program. When you're with other Americans the whole time you slip into English. Ordering things at restaurants is not enough Spanish practice to leave the country with much improvement. My Spanish would not improve if I had not found friends outside the program. Plus, it's a great way to learn the local culture and figure out the places to go for fun! I recommend this program almost solely based on the fact that Merida, Mexico is one of the most wonderful places I have ever been and I would gladly live there for the rest of my life. But like I said for your Spanish to improve, you really need to make an effort. I know many students who left with no improvement in their Spanish whatsoever. It's all up to you.

Yes, I recommend
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More fun than a barrel of spider monkeys. Because in reality, that situation actually sounds like it would be a bit terrifying.

Going to school in Mexico for a semester is definitely far from the worst thing you could do with your life. The people are very nice and welcoming and there's a lot to do and experience. There is some beautiful architecture in the area and the program goes on many excursions to various historic sites, including haciendas and a good variety of ruins. It's pretty fascinating to be able to apply the history that you're learning in the classroom to its real-life counterpart. That, and climbing thousand year-old ruins is actually pretty sweet.

No, I don't recommend
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I get to help out in a local elementary school. It was a great experience because I want to be a teacher. Mexico itself was perfect for me and allowed me to develop better spanish speaking skills. Not to mention the beach is not far away, there is so much sun and tons of good food here!

Yes, I recommend
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Great Year in Mexico

I studied in Merida, Mexico through Central College for my entire senior year. I absolutely loved it! I hope to return to live here after a couple of years of working in the States. My Spanish skills grew leaps and bounds, especially once I started taking classes at a local university. My study abroad experience has been a life changing experience and has shown me the direction in which I would like to take my life and professional career. I highly recommend it!

Yes, I recommend
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The Service Learning/Internship Advantage - Making the Most of Study Abroad

While in Mexico I took casses in Mexican culture, current affairs, the relationship between the United States and Mexico, Spanish, Mayan civilization, and two opportunities to complete service learning for internship, while living with a Mexican family. It was the service learning and internship opportunities that took my study abroad experience to a unique level that exposed me to more than what was available just by taking classes. My internship was completed at Sol y Luna, a non-profit therapeutic facility for young children with severe and profound intellectual and physical disabilities. Being a psychology major at my home institution, with a concentration in Applied Behavior Analysis of developmental disabilities, my participation at Sol y Luna allowed me to not only gain a deeper immersion into a part of Mexican culture, but also make connections between the practices and approaches offered in Mexico compared to the United States. My passions for this population were deepened and I became more aware of what my future work could look like. My time at Sol y Luna did by no means come without challenges. I was not only forced to operate using my non-native language, but I was exposed to a lot of things with little training or warning. The situations in which I was stretched and given a great deal of responsibility are the times I saw my real passion for the people I was working with, and the points at which my skill set was advanced, and my confidence soon followed. Without the opportunity to participate in Service Learning while abroad, I would not have been transformed into the psychology student or individual that I am now. My second service learning opportunity came at La Academía de Inglés (The English Academy) which was located in downtown Mérida and served to teach Mexican students (from a wide range of ages) English skills. English allows the people in Mérida to access better jobs and opportunities. My students’ families were making constant sacrifices so the students would be able to become proficient in the English language. I was exposed to the hardworking and diligent character of the Mexican people. My service at La Academía made me reflect on my own education, American culture, my Spanish skills, the English language, and teaching methods. Working with my students I was able to gain a deeper understanding of different Mexican cultural practices as well as answer questions and provide insight to the American way of life. Service learning is one of the main components of what made my time in Mexico more informative, more interactive, and more insightful. Using my time and talents to serve the people of Mexico made me less of a tourist – not someone who was just “passing through” – but instead an individual that was deeply invested in the culture and the people I was living around for this semester. I gained exposure to things in Mérida, formed relationships, and developed skills that would have not emerged had I not sought a program that offered service learning. I picked Central's study abroad program because of the service learning/internship component and would now highly recommend this program because of the ways I benefitted from the opportunities and exposure while in Mexico!

Yes, I recommend

About Central College Abroad (CCA)

Established in 1965, Central College Abroad is a nationally recognized study abroad provider attracting students from across the United States. Colleges and universities choose Central College Abroad to offer rich global opportunities for their...