OverviewClick to Open
Study in the Yucatan Peninsula
Your home base is Mérida – a beautiful, historic, colonial city centrally located on the Yucatán Peninsula and just 20 minutes from the warm waters of the Gulf of Mexico. In less than a two-hour drive one can discover biodiverse nature reserves, UNESCO archaeological sites, and historic towns where you lunch alongside locals while working on your Spanish language proficiency. Researchers and students are in good company, as Mérida hosts more than a dozen universities and several national research facilities.
Environmental Chemistry and Sustainable Agriculture in the classroom and in the field.
in one of the safest and most beautiful cities in Mexico and immerse yourself in a living Mayan culture.
the scientific and engineering legacy of the ancient Mayan civilization and see firsthand how science impacts contemporary Mayan and Mexican society.
days of sunshine per year287
the year the oldest cathedral on the American continent was completed1598
city of Mérida is founded1542
Location & CultureClick to Open
From its hundreds of Mayan ruins and colonial architecture to its exceptional food and bustling city life, the Yucatán is a complex hub of ancient and modern culture. In fact, the city of Mérida hosts one of the largest intact indigenous populations (60%) of any Latin American city. Look for Mayan culture as part of daily in the modern city – its regional foods, music, textiles and traditions are all rooted in centuries of tradition. Above all, Mérida is a safe, modern city filled with wonderful people among its shops, restaurants, universities and museums.
The Yucatan is ideal for studies in natural sciences including ecology, environment, as well as agricultural and Spanish language studies. Much of the region sits within the Chicxulub crater, formed by the impact of a large asteroid that hit earth 66 million years ago, causing the fifth great extinction that included dinosaurs. Geologically, the Yucatán’s karst topography of limestone creates caves and cenotes rich in beauty and cultural significance. Additionally, zoos, botanical garden, Museum of Natural History, and science institutes are all within easy reach.
Excursions & Activities
- Explore the ruins of Chichén Itzá – perhaps the most famous pre-Columbian site built by the Maya and one of the Seven Wonders of the World!
- Tour the world-class science facilities of the Scientific and Technology Park of Yucatán, home to seed banks, botanical gardens and more.
- Attend a Maya purification ritual in the Sacamucuy cenote
- Drive to colorful Campeche, just two hours southwest of Mérida. The historic fortified town is a UNESCO World Heritage Site where one can stroll the colorful streets in this old port city. Imagine the attacks by pirates and conquistadors from atop Fort San Miguel then savor the fresh seafood in any of the dozens of restaurants within the old city walls.
Daily LifeClick to Open
Homestay: students stay with local families for full immersion in the local culture. For students with little or no Spanish language proficiency, English-speaking families are an option.
Homestay: Two meals per day: breakfast and dinner. Students can use CIEE’s kitchen to prepare meals, and there are many grocery stores, street food vendors, and restaurants nearby.
Where You'll Study
Parque de Santa Ana
nearby art galleries
Market Lucas de Galvez
the main fresh fruit and vegetable market in Mérida
Mayan World Museum
AcademicsClick to Open
CIEE Summer Science and Society in Mérida offers STEM study in two 4-week sessions: Environmental Chemistry, and Agricultural Ethics and the Developing World. In addition, each session offers an optional Communicative Spanish course (1 credit). There are no required courses or prerequisites.
All courses are taught by academics and local CIEE-contracted and trained experts. All instructors have a minimum of a master’s degree. Students participate in a range of complementary co-curricular, personal and professional development activities to promote integration into their host community as active global learners. Throughout, students will explore connections between culture, science, and society.
CIEE Global Institute – Yucatán is conveniently located in the heart of Mérida next to cultural attractions, transportation, shopping, and dining.
There are no specific language requirements for this program.
All students enroll in the one 3-credit CIEE course per session
Total credit: 3-4 U.S. semester/4.5-6 quarter credits per session
CIEE courses: 3 U.S. semester/4.5 quarter credits; 45 contact hours per session
CIEE Communicative Language course: 1 U.S. semester/1.5 quarter credits; 15 contact hours
Classes are scheduled Monday through Friday with possible weekend work and excursions. Regular class attendance and participation is expected and required. Students are also expected to play an active role in their own education by participating in group projects and interacting with fellow students and professors. The grading system is comprised of classroom participation, projects, oral and written presentations, research reports, and essays.
Students enroll in one 3-credit CIEE course per session. Classes includes a mix of both lecture and discussion as well as field trips, guest lectures, and other excursions that provide a unique, place-based academic experience. Students may also enroll in the one-credit Communicative Spanish class in addition to their 3-credit class.
Grades are based on a combination of classroom participation, attendance, projects, and essays. Final grade is composed of exams, papers, homework, projects, attendance, and final test.
Language of Instruction
CoursesClick to Open
Students studying in Mérida for more than one session may only take Communicative Spanish once.
“(GI)” denotes courses that originated at CIEE’s Global Institutes and that are offered at multiple Global Institutes and CIEE Centers.
Note: This course listing is for informational purposes only and does not constitute a contract between CIEE and any applicant, student, institution, or other party. The courses, as described, may be subject to change as a result of ongoing curricular revisions, assignment of lecturers and teaching staff, and program development. Courses may be canceled due to insufficient enrollment.
ScholarshipsClick to Open
Scholarships & Grants
CIEE offers more than $8 million in 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:
- 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 & FeesClick to Open
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.
What's IncludedClick to Open
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