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*UTK Costa Rica First-Year Business Program
Bahia Ballena, Costa Rica; Osa Peninsula, Costa Rica; San Jose, Costa Rica
Program Terms: Fall
This program is currently not accepting applications.
Budget Sheets Fall
Dates / Deadlines:
There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
Fact Sheet:
 GPA Requirement:
Consult College of Business Administration
 Field of Study:
Business Administration
 Language of Instruction:
 Class Standing:
 Language Prerequisite:
 Course Prerequisite:
BA 100
Eco-Lodge, Hotel Program Type: Faculty-led
Open to non-UTK Students: No
Program Description:

Program Description

This will be a highly experiential study abroad program in which a small group of first-year UT CBA students (no more than 18} will have the opportunity to visit and interact with a variety of businesses and leaders in three regions of the Republic of Costa Rica, where tourism, technology, and agriculture are key economic drivers. Through workshops, site visits, lectures, videos, group discussions, cultural activities, and hands-on simulations, students will learn about contemporary business and development issues in Costa Rica while also exploring the culture, history, food, and natural environment of this beautiful Central American country.

After flying into San Jose's Juan Santamaria International Airport, the group will travel by private coach to Bahia Ballena. Located on the picturesque southern Pacific coast of Costa Rica, Bahia Ballena is one of the few remaining authentic "Tico" coastal communities in Costa Rica. Here students will receive an introduction to the "Pura Vida" business culture of Costa Rica and learn about sustainable marine tourism-the lifeblood of the Bahia Ballena economy-and the role of micro-financing in small business development throughout the region. During this phase of the program, we will meet with community and business leaders, acquaint ourselves with local customs and practices, and enjoy this remarkable setting, including a boat tour and guided day trip to Corcovado National Park, called by National Geographic "the most biologically intense place on Earth"!



For the second phase of the program we will travel by private coach to the Osa Peninsula, a relatively tiny (about 35 miles long, 20 miles wide}, remote, and undeveloped region further south on the Pacific coast, that is among the most biodiverse on earth and a model for ecotourism. There we will visit and meet with eco-lodge owners, learn about and discuss historical and current challenges to sustainable development in the region, participate in a community service project, and again leave time to enjoy the unspoiled outdoors through organized program activities.

Finally, we will return by private coach to San Jose, the capital of Costa Rica, where we will participate in a range of business site visits, including to: Cafe Britt, a large gourmet coffee manufacturer; an Intel manufacturing facility; and the Costa Rican Chamber of Commerce. We will also have time to explore this historic city, including its markets and plazas, and debrief and reflect on the experience as a whole before heading home for the holidays.


This program is restricted to students in BA 100, the CBA's first-year studies course, during the Fall 2013 semester.  Students who successfully complete the program will receive credit for International Business 489, which is a 0-credit degree requirement for CBA students pursuing an IB collateral or concentration.


The program fee includes tours in Bahia Ballena and San Jose, multiple visits to local businesses, a coastal mountain hiking tour, a guided boat tour in Corcovado National Park, kayaking on Osa Peninsula, and a half day group service project.


Students will be housed in hotels or eco-lodges during the program.

Faculty Contact

Andrew Seidler

This program is currently not accepting applications.