The Dominican Republic entices travelers from all around the world with its pristine white-sand beaches and regal Victorian architecture. As part of the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, the Dominican Republic is comfortably nestled between the North Atlantic Ocean and the Caribbean Sea. For the adventure fanatic, the DR offers an extremely diverse countryside, ranging from tropical rainforests to desert expanses, from alpine ranges to mangrove swamps. It is the ideal travel site for trekkers, mountain bikers, water-sport junkies, and those in “desperate need of a vacation.”
Photo credit: benkucinski.
Travelers who are big fans of cultural and historical artifacts definitely need to include Santo Domingo on their destination bucket lists. As the first European settlement in the Americas, the city of Santo Domingo is filled old neighborhoods, with old Victorian houses and tree-lined streets. Walking down these streets is like walking into another era – one of stagecoaches and curtseys.
Those seeking an exciting cityscape need to visit San Pedro de Macoris, surrounded by sugarcane plantations, baseball stadiums, and a Central Park. This city is known for the pounding clubs and nightlife on the Malecon area, also known as the Ocean Boulevard.
If you’re seeking a typical “weekend getaway,” Juan Dolio is the place to go. With beautiful beaches and stunning coral reefs, it is the ideal vacation hotspot for people everywhere. Whether you want to swim, relax at a beach, horseback ride, or visit a world class 18 hole golf course – Juan Dolio is sure to excite you
How to Choose a Program
Students who choose to study abroad in the Dominican Republic will get a chance to significantly improve their Spanish language skills. Programs ensure that students also develop a fresh insight and appreciation for the realities of life in the developing world.
- Academics:Academic programs in the DR offer cultural immersion both on and off campus. Expect intensive coursework, homestays, volunteer opportunities, as well as many cultural activities and excursions. From coursework in language, politics and regional literature to rural work retreats and art, studying abroad in the Dominican Republic gives the opportunity to not only LEARN about the society and culture, but to participate in them as well
- Language: English is used to teach at the Universities, but because Spanish is the main language of the DR, eventually students are expected to fully develop their Spanish capabilities and be able to learn and speak the local language.
- Housing: Through homestay programs, students will stay with rural families at their homes while taking university courses. They will earn their stay through rural and urban volunteering activities. Students are given the option of participating in community service or teaching English as a second language to children.
Social Life and Student Culture
One of the best spots to go shopping is the several blocks of long outdoor mall, called El Conde Street. Buy trinkets from street vendors or people-watch from pleasant outdoor restaurants. Be sure to experience the Caribbean cuisine, filled with tropical fruits, rice, beans, and seafood!
Visit the Manati Park, filled with exotic fish, horses, parrots, and the opportunity to swim with dolphins! Altos de Chavon is a modern-day artist’s village resembling a 16th century Mediterranean town. There are so many things to do in this beautiful country, you have to go and experience it all yourself!
Whether you want to surf in the ocean, try your hand at rock-climbing, or spend a day touring beautiful Victorian neighborhoods, the Dominican Republic will not disappoint you with its plethora of activities to do each day.
Scholarships are available varying in the range of $1000 to $4000 each for semester programs.
- The Rutgers Study Abroad Diversity Scholarship is intended to support the diversification of students who study abroad, defined broadly to include ethnic and socioeconomic diversity, students with disabilities, LGBTQ students, and students with a history of overcoming adversity.
- More Study Abroad Grants and Scholarships
Contributed by Sunny Chen
Study Abroad Programs in Dominican Republic
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