Curious about what the parents of past students have said?
I enjoyed my stay in Puebla greatly. I took various precautions for safety, but did not experience anything that appeared dangerous or threatening. The local people I interacted with were all very friendly and helpful, some exceptionally so.
Bill Kortebein, father of Smith student, Fall 2010 & Spring 2011
I visited my daughter in May of 2009. She’d been in Puebla since January, and seemed extremely comfortable speaking Spanish, navigating in and out of the city, and tracking down the odd items on my must-get list. When she’s unhappy I get lots of complaints, and that didn’t happen during this trip. Her experiences in Puebla and in Mexico in general seemed very well planned and appropriate for her age and competence level. I got the sense that she really enjoyed Puebla and the trips she took in small and large groups. I liked the city myself as long as somebody told me when to leap off the bus!
Wheaton parent, Spring 2010
Although I was slightly concerned about my daughter studying for a semester in Mexico, considering the much publicized drug cartel violence, I was unwilling to let those concerns hinder her opportunities. I decided to make a short visit to the school and to her home to reassure myself of her well being.
Her living situation was very comfortable, and her family was very gracious. She chose to study the culture of the region and had great opportunities to travel extensively. I was able to move about Mexico City easily, visiting the museums, Basilica and markets and using the metro. I was very satisfied, as was my daughter, with the vast amount of knowledge of Mexican culture, history, geography and politics she came home with. Thank you for continuing the program.
Julia Castro, mother of Oberlin student, Fall 2009
When our daughter informed us that she was looking into a program located in Puebla, my first reaction was, “Why Mexico?” It turns out that I should have asked, “Why not Mexico?” Our daughter had a life-changing experience, living with a wonderful family and immersing herself in the cultural life of beautiful and safe Puebla. I admit I had my fears, but after spending a week in Puebla, visiting our daughter, I can attest to the fact that Puebla is a great place to “study abroad”. I was impressed by the city, by the other students, and by the terrific program staff. Seeing is believing, and I can now heartily recommend the Puebla program, with no reservations at all.
Bill Fogarty, father of Wellesley student, Fall 2010
What passes for ¨news¨ from foreign countries is often the worst of what is happening. When I was on sabbatical in Germany, the news was full of terrible reports about the U.S. We hear the same thing about Mexico but one needs to recognize that most people are living very normal lives with no experience related to the worst news stories. It is calm in Puebla in particular and most other areas in Mexico. One does need to take reasonable precautions, just as we do in the US, but there is so much to enjoy and experience.
In addition to learning the language well, our daughter learned to be self-sufficient in traveling with one or more fellow students both around the city and around Mexico (Guanajuato, Querétaro, Veracruz, and Chiapas). I have traveled myself to almost every state in Mexico and find the state of Puebla to be one of the richest states and one where I have felt very comfortable. My wife, daughter and I had a truly excellent meal with Bernadette, the Resident Director. Students stay with local families in secure neighborhoods and have total immersion in Spanish. The city and the local university have much to offer. It was certainly a very enriching experience for our daughter.
Father of Wheaton student, Fall 2010