History, Politics, and Culture of Cuba

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The University at Albany offers a unique opportunity to study the history, culture and politics of Cuba, plus intensive Spanish language classes. Learn from some of Cuba's leading intellectuals, political figures and cultural icons. The program includes academic classes combined with experiential learning, cultural experiences, and home stays with Cuban families. The program is based in Havana, with frequent trips outside the capital to visit farming and fishing cooperatives, historic sites, environmental projects, and tourist centers.

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based on 4 reviews
  • Academics 8
  • Support 8.5
  • Fun 9
  • Housing 9.5
  • Safety 9.8
Showing 1 - 4 of 4
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Learning About Cuba in Multiple Ways

The best part of this experience was that I was able to learn about Cuba in a multi-faceted way. Firstly, the classes were very informative and taught by some of the top professors in Cuba. But I also learned just as much by living with my host-family, who were so nice, loving, and welcoming. We had many great conversations, and it's great to hear from as many people about growing up through Cuba's complex history. Our visits to places like the Pedagogical Institute were also incredible. The whole trip was balanced with plenty of learning and plenty of fun.

How can this program be improved?
There were perhaps a couple of times where our schedules while traveling outside of Havana could have included more free time and less strict scheduling. But these trips were still very good.
Yes, I recommend this program
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The Most Immersive and Real Cuban Experience You Can Get

If I had to design my ideal study abroad program, the end result couldn't be better than this program in Cuba. This program brings together diverse, passionate students from around the nation and gives them an unparalleled opportunity to immerse themselves in Cuban culture. Every day you will be challenged by your courses, professors, homestay families, Cuban friends, and US peers to rewire your brain and think differently about Cuba's unique societal structure, democracy, and US-Cuba relations. You will leave this program better understanding your place, personally and politically, as a global citizen. And- you'll do all of this while having the most fun time of your life! From dancing salsa and listening to Cuban jazz to spending lazy days on the beach, you will get a taste of what makes Cuban culture and people so vibrant.

How can this program be improved?
I am actually struggling with an answer for this. I would recommend just a change in allocation of time in the classroom, so that students would be free to immerse themselves in Cuba after lunch after a morning of classes. However, I want to stress how valuable these classes are. They are absolutely essential to informing your experience, so I merely suggest combining them to be in the morning. These suggestions were given to our professors after the program, and I believe they have been heard.
Yes, I recommend this program
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Life Changing Experience!

This trip to Cuba was everything i dreamed of and more! My absolute favorite part was being able to stay with a host family, and truly grasp the Cuban experience. The families were very friendly and accommodating. Most people in the neighborhood are aware of the program and recognize the students, receiving them with open arms. I remember the last week of my program, the parents of one of my peers invited us over to have a small going-away gathering. We had a party on the roof and had music provided to us by our very own host-brothers. This is just one of the many gestures we experienced from the hosts families. This trip allowed me to experience the world in a different way; food, music, culture, history, and more. Cuba is a country that can offer you so much, you'd never want to leave! I know i sure didn't. And until this very day, i am counting down the days until i can once again meet with Cuba again.

How can this program be improved?
Overall, the program is equipped with various topics and forms of learning. However, the communication between the instructors and the students prior to their arrival is crucial. A more detailed list of necessary academic tools (not just items needed for your trip), is highly recommended. Moreover, the requirements of assignments should be more detailed (or more direct).
Yes, I recommend this program
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Cuba is Amazing

I studied abroad in Cuba the fall 2015 and it was one of the best experiences of my life. The program is far from perfect. Academically the program lacks structure and the tools necessary to assist students in understanding the information they are being provided. The program coordinators are amazing people although their communication skills need to be seriously improved. And for anyone who has not lived in a third world country prior to this experience, the living arrangements can be difficult to adjust to. With that said Cuba is one of the most beautiful countries in the world with genuinely pure and good people who will assist you in achieving the personal growth you desire. It is not a program for those with a weak sense of will power or with a weak stomach, however it is for those who desire a challenge and personal growth.

How can this program be improved?
communication needs to be improved within the program. often times schedules were changed last minute without communication to the group leaving many people distressed and confused. Please aware people in advance of the shortage of tissue paper and other personal hygiene products.
Yes, I recommend this program


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About University at Albany Education Abroad

The University at Albany, State University of New York (SUNY), is an internationally recognized public research institution that brings the world to more than 17,000 students at the graduate and undergraduate levels. The variety of perspectives and...