Monteverde, Costa Rica

Women in STEM

Summer '21 applications are now open!
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Information for term Women in STEM

Application deadline, and cost information.

Application Deadline

Rolling Admissions

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Dates: Jun 13 – Jul 3, 2021 (3 weeks)

Application Deadline

Rolling Admissions

Program Deadlines and Pricing Info

  • Dates: Jul 11 – 31, 2021 (3 weeks)


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Find inspiration and real-world solutions, working with female STEM professionals in the rainforest and out in the field.  

Ready to put science into action? Here’s your chance to collaborate with like-minded young women on some of today’s most critical challenges: climate change, food security, and the protection of water resources and biodiversity. With international female scientists and experts as your mentors and guides, you’ll learn first-hand how women in STEM can make a difference, for the better.

First you’ll create your own research or engineering project, picking from topics such as: food waste, “pig poo” and biogas; data modeling and shrinking carbon footprints; farm production and biodiversity; and impacts of cattle production on forest conservation.

Next, you’ll put your problem-solving skills to the test! Design your own tiny houses or rainwater harvesting systems. Research innovative solutions to reforestation. Do your own carbon accounting and data modeling. Or devise an innovation that provides a creative solution of your own.

It’s easy to find inspiration when immersed in one of the most biodiverse places on Earth — especially when living in a comfortable 4-person bungalow at the edge of the cloud forest! In addition to cool living spaces, the new CIEE Global Institute – Monteverde eco-campus provides a perfect outdoor laboratory for STEM, field studies and experiential learning. Spanning 150 acres and complete with classroom space, wet and dry laboratories, a library, organic gardens and a fully functioning farm, your new home has everything you need — and all a short distance from the famous Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve!

After three weeks you’ll return home with a STEM project for your resume or portfolio, plus the skills and confidence to take your experience to the next level. Who knows? You may also be inspired to mentor younger girl scientists yourself!

The Take-Aways


    Join forces with female students and professionals to tackle STEM topics like environmental engineering, renewable energies, biodiversity protection, or technology for conservation. Learn relevant foundational science content and gain engineering, math, or tech skills.


    Design or build STEM projects focused on sustainability. Work with girls-only teams to conduct research, monitor biodiversity, practice carbon accounting and data modeling. Survey the local flora and fauna in a range of ecosystems.


    A Certificate of Learning in STEM and Sustainability

Location & Culture

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Be on the forefront of sustainability in the greenest place on Earth.

Why do biologists from around the globe come to this tiny Central American country? Because it’s one of the most biodiverse regions on the planet. Covering just 0.03% of the world's surface, it’s teeming with over 10,000 different types of tropical plants and animals – representing roughly 5% of the total species worldwide.

Did you know? Costa Rica is a leader in sustainable living and nearly all of its energy is renewable. What’s more, it is the only country to set the goal to be carbon neutral by 2025. Over the past 25 years, Costa Rica has doubled its forest cover – while still building a healthy economy. The country continues to innovate with sustainable agriculture, energy production, reforestation efforts, biodiversity and ocean resources protection. Ecotourism is a major economic driver and a win-win for all involved.

This small country —roughly the size of West Virginia — has a wealth of geographical features, from rugged mountains and volcanoes to both dry and lush forests with different microclimates. Along the warm Pacific coastline, you will see some of the most spectacular sunsets in your life.

Daily Life

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Daily Life

"What better way to start our time in Monteverde than with a hike into the famous, beautiful cloud forest?"...

Learn more about daily life on a high school study abroad program by reading our blog posts above.


    CIEE Student Dorms


    24/7 Support from your CIEE program leader and in-country CIEE staff members


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Activities & Excursions

Sample Activities

  • Get a bird’s-eye view on a guided natural history tour of the world-famous Monteverde Cloud Forest Preserve.
  • Explore the Bajo del Tigre reserve of the Children’s Eternal Rain Forest, Costa Rica’s largest private protected area. 
  • Tour local farms (coffee, hydroponic, permaculture) known for their innovative and inspiring solutions to local challenges.

Sample Excursions

  • Visit Arenal Volcano, the country’s most striking landmark, and the volcanic hot springs and waterfalls that surround it.
  • Hang on a white-sand Pacific beach with warm tropical waters before heading to San Jose for departure.

Download a sample itinerary ›

Please note this list of activities is based on past programs and subject to change at CIEE's discretion to both adapt to local circumstances and participant feedback. Our goal when revising itineraries is always to enhance your experience. Every activity is designed to provide you with a deep immersion in your topic, local culture and sights. Get ready for maximum fun!

Dates & Fees

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Dates & Fees


  • Program open to all current high school female students: Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors, and Seniors. 
  • For scholarship eligibility requirements, please check our Scholarship page.
  • This program involves engaging in moderate to high intensity physical activities such as hiking, and extended observational time outdoors.



Program scholarships and tuition include iNext Travel Insurance, but do not cover the cost of flights. More details about tuition inclusions can be found here.


Application Due

Start Date

End Date


Summer Session I 2021 3 weeks Rolling Admissions Jun 13, 2021 Jul 3, 2021


Summer Session II 2021 3 weeks Rolling Admissions Jul 11, 2021 Jul 31, 2021


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Ready to change your life?