Housing and Cultural Excursions
Housing - A Cultural Experience Every Day
To make the experience of living abroad complete through immersion in the language and culture, undergraduate students will be housed with carefully selected families in Alcalá who are familiar with our program. All homes are located in residential sections of Alcalá, either within walking distance or connected by convenient means of transportation to the University facilities. In most cases, students will be assigned an American roommate (of the same sex) who is also a participant in our program. While enjoying personal freedom, students are expected to make the most of this opportunity to discover a new culture by conforming to customs and meal hours of the host family.
All arrangements for housing are made by the program prior to the students' arrival, and all housing costs while school is in session, including room, board, and laundry, are included in the total cost of the program. Please note, however, that this does not include vacation periods, since most of our students travel over vacations.
Spain is an extraordinarily diverse country, both geographically and culturally. For this reason, and because we believe that the learning experience should extend beyond the classroom, the program organizes special cultural excursions each semester. These excursions are supervised by the director and staff of the program and regularly include some of the students' professors as special guides. Examples of recent excursions include:
- A trip through Andalucía including: a visit to Córdoba to see the Mezquita, then on to Sevilla with its ancient Moorish fortress then Alcázar, the Cathedral (where Columbus is said to be buried) the fascinating Barrio de Santa Cruz, and on to the breathtaking Alhambra in Granada.
- A day in Toledo to visit the Sinagoga del Tránsito, the magnificent Cathedral, the house of El Greco, and the Iglesia de Santo Tomé which houses El Greco's masterpiece The Burial of the Count of Orgáz.
- A weekend in Barcelona to explore the Barrio Gótico, stroll down "Las Ramblas", visit the Picasso museum and witness the architectural genius of Gaudí. Then on to Valencia to experience one of the most unusual traditions of Spanish folk culture: the burning of "Las Fallas".
Because we believe that such cultural experiences are an integral part of the students' time in our program, the entire cost of these excursions: meals, lodging, transportation, and admission fees is included in the overall cost of the program.