CIEE: Council on International Educational Exchange



A nonprofit, non-governmental organization, CIEE is the world leader in international study and exchange programs. For 65 years, CIEE has helped thousands of students, professionals, and educators gain the knowledge and skills necessary to live and work in a globally interdependent and culturally diverse world by offering the most comprehensive, relevant, and valuable exchange programs available.


300 Fore St.
Portland, ME 04101
United States



Amazing program if you’re looking for a balance of sustainability and development lectures/excursions and cultural/language immersion (mostly through homestays). So welcomed by my homestay family and felt like we had lots of time to get to know Monteverde while still having work and classes almost every day. Not academically “rigorous” but incredibly insightful- exposure to multiple places within Costa Rica and the cloud forest, perspectives on green issues, and the chance to do mini research survey projects.
Strong support and guidance from instructors. Would have liked more immersion activities, but able to be independent and find them on our own. Monteverde and Santa Elena all very walkable. So many hikes!
Will be dreaming of the amazing ficus trees and people here for years to come.

Yes, I recommend
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I really enjoyed my time in Toulouse! I learned a lot about the French culture and had an amazing professor for my international marketing class! CIEE provided many activities to help you learn about the culture as well as build relationships with your peers. Some activities I enjoyed more than others but most of the activities such as weekend trip to Ariege and a day trip to Albi were amazing. We also got the opportunity to take a cooking class and attend a cheese and wine tasting. Class schedule was slightly intense but workload was very manageable we were given an hour lunch each day but had class from 10:30-12:30 and 1:30-3:30. The class I took offered excursions to Airbus and a local hospital to help learn about the subjects. They give weekends free to your freedom where I ended up going to Paris and Nice which is awesome for any outside travel you want to go. This 4 week program is structured very well, it’s extremely organized and they give you lots of support and help you find fun activities. I also was here during the World Cup when France made the final so that added to the excitement!

How can this program be improved?
More activities that the students want to do directly. Food and laundry stipend given to the students living in the residence!
Yes, I recommend

CIEE's Summer Open Campus in Paris made my summer the best one yet! The staff is so helpful and caring; any time you have an issue, they are more than willing to help you. Furthermore, they planned optional "extracurricular" activities that helped the students discover new parts of Paris that might not be known to tourists. The program also plans a day trip and an overnight trip each session to locations 1-3 hours around Paris. These were places that I would've wanted to travel to on my own (i.e. Normandy, Loire Valley, Chateaus, and Giverny), but the program transported us there and paid for meals and lodging. The staff was always willing to help answer any questions about Paris/Europe, such as where I should go for the best escargot or how I could book cheap tickets to travel to another city. The program had two days off which allowed for time to travel to other locations in Europe. The classes were extremely interesting! I learned a lot, but the workload was not at all overwhelming. The other students were amazing. Since we were studying abroad, we all seemed to be adventurous people who were looking to have a fun time exploring Paris. I have made the most amazing friends and memories that I will absolutely never forget. My summer with CIEE was priceless!

How can this program be improved?
The only thing I would say could be improved about the program is helping the students connect with more locals.
Yes, I recommend
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I loved this program because it immersed me into the Portuguese culture. I took an Art History course where we were walking around Lisbon, and surrounding areas, learning about different architecture styles along with Lisbon's layers of cultural history. We started in Medieval times and worked our way up to Modern Lisbon. Since I am an Art History major, this course was perfect-but all of the other students came from various backgrounds which created a great diversity. I got to explore so much of Lisbon even in the short one month time span I was there. The staff on site, Luísa, Joana and Sara, were amazing! Whenever I had a concern or needed a recommendation for something to do, they were there to help! The class size was small and perfect for those who like a more one-on-one experience. The excursions to Évora, the Escher Exhibit and surfing class were wonderful. We did everything that my Lisbon guide book recommended to do. I was also able to learn more about Portuguese culture, especially since the locals were very friendly and spoke English! The program allowed us to have plenty of independent free time to explore which was very liberating. The homestay gave me the opportunity to connect with a local family and be more connected to the culture. Overall, this program exceeded any expectations I had.

Yes, I recommend
Soohorang & I

Throughout the application process to CIEE's program, every question I had was either followed by a rapid email reply, or a phone call. The longest I ever waited for a response was when my flight was delayed on the way to Tokyo, and I couldn't check my emails on the plane.
One major thing that I had worried about while studying abroad was financials, and CIEE made sure to sponsor multiple excursions, adventures, and activities for its students. These excursions include going to Hiroshima and Miyajima, touring Kamakura, going to Sumo, getting tickets to museums, and much more! Furthermore, I was able to experience multiple cultural day trips, and be reimbursed after. Not only does this help save money for the students, but it allowed us to go on twice the amount of adventures that we normally may have!
Something that future participants should know is that if you're at any time feeling stressed out, or just need someone to talk to, CIEE has an office that is conveniently located on the Sophia campus that you can relax in any time between 10 and 5. Even if you just go to the office for a quick lunchtime snack, you'll be sure to leave in a happier mood then when you came. Talking to the CIEE staff is like talking to a friend. Be it movies or places to go, the office staff will help you out.
From my time in this program, I have gained a large support network, ideas for future jobs, and have met some highly influential people that I can call my friends. Everyone in the program has a unique background, and this really helps to create an ongoing network.
TLDR: If you wish to have fun, learn a lot, meet people, and make amazing memories, apply to CIEE's Tokyo program.

Yes, I recommend


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