Monteverde, Costa Rica

Summer Global Internship

New for Summer '23
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Spend your summer interning abroad in Monteverde, a unique region known for its biological diversity, multicultural society, and the efforts its community organizations and businesses make to conserve natural resources and mitigate climate change.  

During your summer internship, you'll gain new skills and abilities while living in one of the few ecosystems of a Tropical Cloud Forest. Discover first-hand the initiatives and ventures involved in balancing an economy and ecotourism without compromising sustainability, human well-being, community resilience, conservation, climate action, and more in this biodiverse Costa Rican region. 

  • Learn from Costa Rican eco-entrepeneurs

    who are forward-thinking in their climate-smart practices that are developing green businesses in Monteverde

  • Live in a rural mountain community

    surrounded by a tropical cloud forest and friendly Costa Ricans

  • Put new skills into practice

    as you complete your internship program that gives you an in-depth look at sustainable development in the tropics

Location & Culture

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Monteverde lies along the continental divide at the crest of the Cordillera de Tilarán mountain chain in the northwestern region of Costa Rica, which is blanketed by the cool and wet Cloud Forest extending into the Atlantic lowlands. The Cloud Forest provides a striking contrast to the deciduous forest on the Pacific side.  

The Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve was established in 1972 to protect the entire ridge above Monteverde and down into the Peñas Blancas Valley. As a result of its unique history and geography, Monteverde is a stunning home to exotic flora, fauna, and wildlife and sustainability projects, including agriculture, energy production, water conservation, forest management, and biodiversity conservation.  

CIEE wants all our students to feel welcomed, supported, and empowered to succeed while studying abroad. Local CIEE staff have provided details about conditions and cultural attitudes that students with specific identities might encounter in Monteverde.

Excursions & Activities

  • Visit natural destinations, such as national parks or reserves, to experience Costa Rica’s biodiversity and natural beauty.  
  • Rise with the sun for birding tours or farm chores and experiencing biodiversity after the sun goes down with a guided night hike in the forest.  
  • Explore indoor and outdoor areas with access to forest trails and gardens for recreation, self-exploration, and co-curricular activities.  
  • Visit local businesses involved with tourism and learn from residents about their opinions on the good, the bad, and all the rest of tourism development. 

Daily Life

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  • Housing

    Whether on or off-campus, students live in dormitories surrounded by Monteverde’s Cloud Forest in double, triple, or quad rooms shared with other CIEE students. Rooms have shared or en-suite bathrooms, shared desks, and shared closets.

  • Meals

    All students receive three simple but hearty meals per day. Accommodation for vegan and vegetarian diets is available.


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As a global intern in Monteverde, you’ll work in a non-paying position within a range of opportunities across a diverse set of innovative businesses focused on sustainable practices, climate change mitigation, or conservation and take an integrated academic course. Internship opportunities will include research options on themes regarding conservation, carbon storage, climate change, and other related research-driven fields. Extra-curricular and cultural activities in and around the Monteverde region complement your internship and coursework. 

Research opportunities may include monitoring long-term forest regeneration plots to assess carbon storage rates or how the effects of climate change can be measured. Furthermore, students can research the effectiveness of regenerative grazing to determine its importance in lowering the ecological footprint of livestock. 



Language Prerequisites

There are no specific language requirements for this program.

Additional Requirements

Rising sophomore standing and above required at time of participation. 

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.

Program Requirements

Students participate in an academic course taught in an online learning environment alongside the eight-week, full-time internship. Participation in the integrated academic course and internship are mandatory for all participants. 


Total credit: 6 U.S. semester / 9 quarter credits 

Course Credit

Internship: 6 U.S. semester/9 quarter credits; 15 integrated academic course hours, 225-300 internship placement hours 

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.

Academic Culture

Students are expected to behave professionally throughout their internship project and are subject to the agreed upon internship protocols arranged by CIEE and the host organizations. The academic course is designed to prepare students for leadership in a globally interdependent and culturally diverse workforce. 

Class Format

Students participate in an eight-week CIEE full-time internship and an integrated online academic course. Class and/or work hours may be scheduled Monday-Friday, and attendance is strictly enforced.  To avoid falling behind, students should not plan personal travel away from the city during the work week. 


Students will be assessed via assignments and activities related to the academic course, including but not limited to, online discussion forums, reflective papers, individual or group presentations, analysis of readings, an internship work plan, and feedback from internship supervisor. Internship supervisors and students each provide written evaluations of progress towards goals. 

Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.

Language of Instruction


Individual courses may have additional prerequisites; for CIEE courses, these are listed in the syllabi below. Students are responsible for having their own course approval conversations with their advisors.


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Scholarships & Grants

CIEE offers scholarships and grants annually to help students like you make your study abroad dream a reality.

Students who apply to this program are eligible for the following scholarships and grants:

  • Wollitzer Merit Scholarships in Area or Comparative Studies
  • Ping Scholarships for Academic Excellence
  • Global Access Initiative (GAIN) Grants
  • CIEE Gilman Go Global Grant

To be considered, submit the CIEE Scholarships & Grants application within your CIEE program application. Learn more at the Scholarships & Grants section of our website.

See more scholarship info

Dates & Fees

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Dates & Fees

You get more for every dollar when you study abroad with CIEE, because our high-quality programs include everything from excursions to insurance. There are no hidden charges, and no disappointing surprises when you arrive.


Application Due

Start Date

End Date

Fees & Housing

Summer 2023 8 weeks Deadline Passed Jun 12, 2023 Aug 5, 2023
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Program Fees

CIEE offers the most student support of any provider in its program fee, including an airport greeting, full-time leadership and support, orientation, cultural activities, local excursions, pre-departure advising, and CIEE iNext travel insurance with benefits.

Participation Confirmation = $300 *

Educational Costs = $3,953

Housing = $2,500

Insurance = $197

Total Fees = $6,950

Estimated Costs

Students are responsible and manage costs related to travel, meals, books, and personal expenses. Below are estimates for consideration.

Meals not included in program fee = $175

International Airfare = $650

Local Transportation = $100

Books & Supplies = $50

Visa Fees = $0

Potential travel to consulate for visa = $0

Personal expenses = $250

Other = $0

Total Estimated Costs = $1,225

Financial Aid

CIEE offers the most grants and scholarships of any study abroad organization, including $8 million/year in travel grants, merit-based scholarships, institutional and MSI grants, and Gilman Go Global Grants.

See Scholarships

This breakdown has been prepared from the program budget for the purpose of calculating eligibility for financial aid. During the course of program operations, actual figures may vary. It should not, therefore, be used as a basis for calculation of refunds. CIEE reserves the right to adjust fees at any time.

Students required by their US home institution to study abroad via CIEE's School of Record will be charged a $500 administrative fee in addition to the Program Fees listed.

* non-refundable

To help you budget, keep in mind that students are responsible for the cost of international airfare, local transportation, books and supplies, visas, and personal expenses. In addition, your college or university may charge additional fees for study abroad, or may require you to receive a transcript via CIEE's School of Record, which carries an additional fee of $500.

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What's Included

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What's Included

Pre-departure Advising
Advising before you depart to set goals and answer questions
Optional on-site airport meet-and-greet
Introduction to your program plus practical information about living in your host city
Cultural and Extracurricular Activities
Excursions and/or Study Tours
Travel Protection
CIEE iNext and a local liability insurance
24/7 emergency on-site support

Our Staff

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Get Started

Here's what you need to do to take the next steps:
  • 1

    You're one step closer to an amazing study abroad experience! 

  • 2

    Share your plans and confirm you're on track to meet all required steps to go abroad. 

  • 3

    Contact Us

    Send us an email if you still have questions or need information about applying to this program.