Studying abroad isn’t just about academics. While studying will be an important part of the semester, equally as important is the investment that students make in engaging with their host communities. The Middlebury School in Argentina encourages students to go beyond the traditional study abroad path and explore the many ways they can enrich their experience.
The suggestions on the pages below are based primarily on recommendations that we’ve received from former students. These lists are by no means exhaustive; rather, they are meant merely as a starting point for exploring all of the ways you can get involved in Argentina!
Cultural Events & Activities
Alma Papelera: A place to learn paper and writing-based arts through workshops and courses.
I took both intensive short-term and semester long courses in bookbinding and calligraphy with Alma Papelera in Villa Crespo. They are super nice and it was a great place to practice my Spanish, learn fun new skills and meet locals. They are very accommodating as far as repeating instructions and one-on-one help with the craft techniques in class (I learned a lot of words I didn’t even know in English, too). My bookbinding teacher even noted how much my Spanish had improved… Jilly Dos Santos (Middlebury College), Spring 2018
BAFICI - Festival Internacional de Cine de Buenos Aires: For students studying in the spring semester, stay tuned for specific dates and locations!
Centro Cultural R. R. Rojas: Take a look through the Centro’s programación for information about performances, festivals, art shows, and other cultural events. They even offer free, open courses!
Centro Cultural Recoleta: I enjoyed going to the Centro Cultural Recoleta to watch a movie in the park on Fridays. They always have a ton of free events going on and there are some really great cervecerías located super close by for after! Annie Aguilar (Middlebury College), Spring 2018.
Cine Cosmos: Buenos Aires introduced me to how awesome independent films are….[Cine Cosmos] only plays independent films, make sure it’s open before you go! Tickets only $20AR with student ID. Annie Aguilar (Middlebury College), Spring 2018.
Festival Konex de Música Clásica: For students studying in the spring semester, stay tuned for specific dates and locations!
Feria del Libro Infantil y Juvenil: For students studying in the spring semester, stay tuned for specific dates and locations!
Local Music Scene: There are a number of local bands and music venues to check out while in Buenos Aires. Jacob Falby (Pomona College), Spring 2009 lived in a homestay with a local musician. He joined their band, Palo Pandolfo y el Ritual, and got to perform in some of their concerts! Here he playing the violin at one of their shows:
Tango Music & Dance: Opportunities to learn about and enjoy both tango dance and music can be found all over the city of Buenos Aires. Below you will find videos of students enjoying this aspect of Argentine culture:
Students during the semester of Spring 2008 took tango lessons as a group and met regularly to practice their dance moves. In this video, Derek Buchner (Pomona College) and Sabrina McNew (Pomona College) tango together:
Ellen Flanagan (Middlebury College), Spring 2008 had the opportuntiy to play the violin with a tango music group. Here she is at one of their performances:
…they are like a cultural center that has classes! Acting classes, dance classes, art classes, etc…Students should look into this! Anoush Baghdassarian (Claremont McKenna College), Fall 2015
Fran Querdasi (Pomona College), Fall 2016 compiled this great Google map of places to eat in Buenos Aires: https://drive.google.com/open?id=1OQZ6uS26Bt9c8OzAeFdv3wPe1ms&usp=sharing
Restorando: You can get amazing deals on meals if you are willing to eat a little earlier (8pm-ish), make a reservation, and pay in cash! Annie Aguilar (Middlebury College), Spring 2018
Outdoor & Physical Activities
Perfect if you’re living in Caballito or Almagro. This gym is located on Avenida La Plata, between Quito and Rivadavia. It’s above the Cinemark movie theater; just enter the theater doors and go up the stairs to reach it. Most gyms in the area cost around $70 USD a month — this one is $70 for three months! Granted, it is very worn down, but it’s worth it for the price. Isaac Harris (Pomona College), Spring 2017
Galpón FACE: Two months passed before I finally found this studio, and it quickly became my dance home for the rest of my semester in BA. Located in Parque Patricio, just two blocks from the subte (Linea H, Parque Patricio hacia Hospitales). Every two years, the school hosts a new training program for young, developing dance artists. The school also offers open classes for everyone, including members of the training program. I took contemporary, classical, and acro dance classes. Annie Aguilar (Middlebury College), Spring 2018
I joined Megatlon (it’s a big chain gym) and it was GREAT! I loved loved loved the classes and the people. I joined the running team and made friends that I went running with every week at 7:30 pm MWF and it was so fun! I joined the Recoleta location but got a membership that let me in to a lot of different locations and that was helpful for when I wanted to go to different classes. The gym was really a GREAT way to practice my spanish and to stay busy and fit and make friends. I also learned so many words I wouldn’t have learned if I didn’t go to these classes. Anoush Baghdassarian (Claremont McKenna College), Fall 2015
Vibra Dance Studio: I also took one or two Zumba classes a week at Vibra Dance Studio in Belgrano, (Subte Linea D, Juramento hacia Congreso). This studio atmosphere in fun and welcoming and the prices are very reasonably priced compared to other studios. You’ll see familiar faces each class because there are some very dedicated regulars. Highly recommend if you need to blow off some steam and just move your body! Annie Aguilar (Middlebury College), Spring 2018
Don’t underestimate the power of Facebook and other social media platforms to help you connect with your host community!
I just started liking all the events on Facebook that seemed even remotely interesting and I discovered all these fun artisan markets and workshops and fun food nights! Annie Aguilar (Middlebury College), Spring 2018
Special Interest Groups
I am Armenian so I joined the Armenian youth group (UJA: Union juventud Armenia) and it was the greatest decision I made in Argentina because it gave me a great way to make friends and gave me something to do every week. There were weekly meetings on Tuesday evenings and then there would always be events they put on each week so I’d go to those and then we’d all go out to dinner afterwards, etc. and it was the best way to make friends and really immerse myself in the community. I highly recommend that people look up groups like this that they identify with to try to make friends—if they go to a synagogue at home, try to find one there. Try to find a diaspora community for their ethnicity and see if there is a cultural center for it! I know this is not a possibility for everyone, but if it is, that student should try it! Anoush Baghdassarian (Claremont McKenna College), Fall 2015
Some of your host universities may also sponsor general events and/or events catered to international students and other special-interest groups. Be sure to connect with the international students’ office, other university departments, and student organizations via Facebook and check their websites for upcoming events. Also be on the lookout for flyers and student group tables once you’re on campus!
Universidad de Buenos Aires
- Centro Cultural R. R. Rojas: Take a look through the Centro’s programación for information about performances, festivals, art shows, and other cultural events. They even offer free, open courses!
- Centro de Estudiantes: If you are studying at UBA Filo or UBA Sociales, the Centro de Estudiantes is the student government of each campus representing their respective student bodies. At Filo it is known as CEFYL. They provide the services in the building like the cafe and the photocopy stores. But more importantly, they host “asambleas” — assemblies — about every month where students gather (often in the street!) to discuss issues and vote on measures. Isaac Harris (Pomona College), Spring 2017
- UBA Deportes: A hub for sports and well-being related activities at UBA.
- UBA Internacional: A hub for information specific to international students studying in Buenos Aires and at UBA.
Universidad Católica de Argentina
Programa PAL: Connect with a local UCA student who can introduce you to the university (and the city) and show you the ropes.
Universidad Torcuato di Tella
Deportes y Tiempo Libre: Information about extracurricular offerings at di Tella.