IES Abroad Santiago - Study in Santiago

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About

The IES Abroad Santiago Program allows you to fully immerse yourself in the daily life and culture of Chile while studying the Spanish language and Latin America. Courses are taught in Spanish by distinguished professors from IES Abroad partner universities.

Santiago will also be your classroom. Imagine practicing your Spanish as you tour local neighborhoods or visiting local business organizations as part of your study of Chile’s regional and global trade. Welcome to study abroad! Wherever possible, our courses take advantage of the city’s many historical, artistic, and cultural sites, and several courses also include a hands-on, practical component.

Questions & Answers

Reviews

97%
based on 26 reviews
  • Academics 8.9
  • Support 9.8
  • Fun 9.3
  • Housing 9.4
  • Safety 9.4
Showing 16 - 26 of 26
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Philip
10/10

Semester in Santiago

This past semester, I was studying abroad in Santiago, Chile with IES and it was was such an amazing, unforgettable experience. The entire IES staff is extremely nice and supportive. IES also helps immensely in making you feel comfortable with the Chilean culture and customs. I was able to be a part of the Chilean student life and meet some amazing friends by taking courses at the Pontifica Universidad de Chile, one of the best universities in South America. Though at times the academics at the university can be tough, there are many resources available to help international students. During my stay, I lived with a host family and had the nicest host mom. She made me feel completely at home.

Santiago is a vibrant city full of history, culture, and excitement from the fast-paced city environment to the calm and peaceful mountains surrounding the area. I highly recommend spending a semester in Santiago, Chile with IES abroad.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Nick
9/10

Santiago, IES style

IES struck a perfect balance between accessibility and hands-off-ness, allowing us to have as much help or be as self-sufficient as we wanted. Here are a few examples:

Times when IES was involved:
* Complaints about homestays were heard and handled personally and promptly
* Security threats such as protests or natural disasters were addressed promptly and demanded immediate responses
* Holidays like Halloween and Thanksgiving were celebrated in the IES building.

Time when IES was hands-off:
* We were allowed to take classes at partner Universities
* We were free to get involved in whatever group or organization we found without first running it by IES staff.
* We had the chance to arrange our own housing if desired.

How can this program be improved?
IES tended to need a high percentage of group participation to go through with certain things, like weekend trips or cooking classes. A lot of us missed out on fun activities because we couldn't garner enough group participation. Perhaps finding a cost-effective way to supply these opportunities to smaller groups would do IES good.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Federica
9/10

So... When can I go back to Santiago?

I studied abroad in Santiago, Chile last semester and I can honestly say that it was one of the best semesters of my life. From day one IES made me feel at home and welcome which gave me the confidence I needed to travel and explore this beautiful city and country. This program gives you the opportunity to not only take great classes at the IES center in Santiago but also allows you to take courses at two of the best universities in Chile; Pontifica Universidad Católica de Chile and Universidad de Chile. I took three classes with IES, including the internship seminar, and then a class at Pontifica Universidad Católica and I enjoyed them all because I was learning something new everyday. My host family was very accommodating and made me feel right at home which made it even harder for me to leave at the end of my program. I would definitely recommend this program to anyone that is looking to have a culturally rich and exciting semester abroad!

How can this program be improved?
The one thing I would change about this program is to increase the amount of information we receive prior to leaving the U.S. about the potential courses we can take at the local universities there.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Ashley
10/10

A day-to-day Adventure

Studying abroad in Santiago, Chile was an unforgettable experience. I would highly recommend prospective students to consider choosing either this location or one equally "non-traditional". This way, you can gain a more intimate feeling within your study abroad program. The IES Santiago program fit perfectly with my interests because the smaller program size of 20 students made it easier to make friend within the program while offering ample space to make friends with the locals.

The most challenging aspects about my study abroad experience was adjusting to the Chilean dialect and to the university grading system. However, the IES staff were more than willing to answer any/all of my questions. The best memories I have of this experience is the traveling we were able to do throughout our semester. Chile is an extremely geographically diverse country and transportation is very accessible both domestically and internationally.

Not getting discouraged by the difficulty of communicating goes a long way. I personally benefited from plugging into a local Korean-Chilean church where I met friends who I continue to keep in contact with. I highly recommend finding a certain niche of local friends who can not only help you improve your conversational Spanish, but who will also show you parts of the city/country that you may never have stumbled upon on your own.

How can this program be improved?
The Clinical Observation class was not what I had expected it to be. The observations were very minimal in interaction, and the shifts were quite long. Much of what I was interested in, I learned in the Medical Spanish class at the IES Program Center.

The professors at IES, especially Claudia Flores and Pablo Fierro are extremely knowledgeable and charismatic. I wish more students would have taken their classes because I learned so much without being overwhelmed with too heavy of a workload.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Sarah
10/10

An Unforgettable Semster!

I spent a semester in Santiago studying with IES and at la Pontificia Universidad Catolica de Chile (PUC), one of the top-ranked universities in South America. There are also opportunities to take classes la Universidad de Chile, another excellent school. All classes are taught in Spanish, and, though Chilean Spanish, with all its "chilenismos," is admidedly difficult to pick up on right away, after a few weeks of adjusting, I felt comfortable in the classroom. The IES staff is fantastic - friendly, knowledgable, and willing to help - and the professors really know their stuff, and are generally very patient with American students.
IES arranges housing with host families, which is one of the best ways to immerse yourself in the local culture and language. The homes are in safe neighborhoods, and IES takes care to make sure the students feel comfortable there. I also highly recommend signing up for Tandem, a language exchange program sponsored by PUC which pairs foreigners who want to practice their Spanish with Chileans who want to practice your language. You meet once a week for an hour, speaking alternatively in the two shared languages. This was one of the highlights of my semester and it is a great way meet local students and make Chilean friends.
There is plenty to do in Santiago - lots of museums, cultural events, and nightlife. Beyond the city, there are incredible travel opportunities. The Andes Mountains provide a perfect location for hiking or skiing and are just an hour or so away. Or go west for a Pacific Coast day trip. From north to south, Chile is home to spectacular landscapes that are must-see's. The Atacama Desert, Chiloe, and Patagonia were some of my favorites.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Jennifer
10/10

Study in Santiago

the best part about studying abroad was all of the traveling I was able to do and all of the adventures I was able to have. I had more free time than I ever have had in college which led me to a lot of traveling and adventures. I did everything I could from hang-gliding across the dessert, beach and city, hiking with penguins in Patagonia, horse back riding in the driest dessert in the world, ice picking my way to the top of an active volcano and skiing in the Andes Mountains and just like soo much more. It was great that there were so many cultural events like carnivals, festivals, concerts and parades that were so much fun to attend. I lived with a host family which i think was a great choice, i was able to practice my spanish all of the time and all of my meals were made fore me (breakfast in bed everyday, like seriously, who can complain about that?!). Day to day life was great, the weather was like perfect all the time, it never even broke out my winter jacket! Traveling was really easy living in Santiago, its the center for absolutely everything and there are cheap buses to EVERYWHERE. Even airfare was super affordable. The one thing I did not like was how expensive day to day life was. Food, day to day transportation, drinks and clothing are all pretty expensive. Although taxis were unbelievably cheap. Overall it was an amazing experience and I could not have asked for a better staff who was always willing to help and always so patient with my awful spanish skills. I definitely recommend this program and especially recommend taking classes at the local university to really meet more Chileans. I was not a strong spanish speaker at all and still kept up my GPA.

How can this program be improved?
If I had to change something about the program it would be the specifics and organization of the classes. Classes that I took at IES were very organized and well laid out, however classes at the local university (Pontificad de Universidad Catolica) are nothing like classes in the US. It is a lot more unorganized and you do not get a nice polished syllabus at the beginning of the semester.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Shriya
10/10

IES Santiago is AMAZING!

Everything about my experience in Santiago was absolutely fantastic! My center staff, my host mom, and my peers were all quite helpful and collaborative! My host mom helped me with my homework and speaking skills, prepared all my meals, integrated me into her family, and in general, really took care of me. I did not come into the program knowing anyone, but my group ended up becoming really close because there were so few of us (only 25!). It was difficult at first to communicate solely in Spanish as I had never been fully immersed before, but it quickly became much easier (and almost second habit even!) to the point where I came back home and realized that I had begun to think in Spanish! I think this program definitely helped me develop a lot, both on a personal level and on the level of improving my Spanish skills. I would highly recommend it to everyone!

How can this program be improved?
I would like the center to host more social events! Of course, there were plenty of student-organized social events, but it would have been nice to have more experiences to bond with the staff and their families as well.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Hannah
10/10

Random decisions aren't always bad

IES Abroad in Santiago was the best semester so far of my college career. I was challenged and stretched on a daily basis, but it was worth every tear of frustration, every awkward moment, and every twinge of homesickness I ever felt. I made a spur of the moment decision to study in Chile and had no prior knowledge of the country nor any expectations. However, I encountered one of the most naturally beautiful, culturally interesting, and historically and politically stimulating countries. Being there to celebrate their national holiday, the dieciocho (September 18) was a highlight, and I felt a part of another culture. I learned about their history and political situation and how the United States has influenced that, and not always for the better. My host family, however, was what became the best part of my experience. That's a realization that hit me after being back in the States because in these last four months since being home, not a day has gone by when I don't think of them at some moment. And so now I'm still getting homesick, but this time it's for Chile.

How can this program be improved?
The connection they have with the local university. It was hard and confusing at first to enroll in some classes at PUC and some at the center. I felt like there was a disconnect between the two.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Yelena
9/10

Incredible Santiago!

Study abroad in Santiago was an absolutely incredible experience. I loved the IES program, especially for its size and its wonderful staff. As a city, Santiago is one of the most exciting cities I've visited. I loved the arts and culture, the endless options for things to do, and the general culture.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Santiago
10/10

IES Santiago

I had a superb time in Santiago, Chile. I though academics might be sub-par, but when I got there I discovered I was very satisfied with the quality of my classes. I took classes at IES and at the local catholic university, which is the highest ranked university in the country and offers courses in most US majors. Living in Santiago was awesome, as it is a big city with lots to do. There is also ample opportunity to travel within Chile and South America. It really is a cultural and Spanish immersion. Be prepared for Chileans to speak quickly and with a lot of their own expressions and slang (they are wonderful people though!).

How can this program be improved?
I'd like a better debriefing before going back to the US.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Kimberly
10/10

IES Santiago is a must!

IES Santiago is a must. The city is so fun and there are always so many things to do. The staff at IES is very helpful and genuinely very nice. The food is awesome. I hope you like bread tho... The weather is really nice. It never rains. The view of the Andes Mountains from anywhere in the city is mesmerizing. Torres del Paine, San Pedro de Atacama, Valparaiso, Pucón, and Chiloé are just some of the incredible places you can travel to in Chile. I was able to see real penguins in their natural habitat! The clinical observation program with IES was unreal. I was able to witness heart surgeries, brain surgeries, and even births. Learning spanish in Chile can be difficult with a lot of slang but you pick it up very fast and people are so nice and always willing to help.

How can this program be improved?
I wish I didn't take movie class about Latin America because it was tuesday afternoons and I got really sleepy during the movies.
Yes, I recommend this program

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IES Abroad offers 140 programs worldwide for college students. We are a highly charged force of study abroad enthusiasts. Every day we have the privilege of witnessing how study abroad changes our students’ lives. We also believe that every student...