At the School in Chile, students have the option of directly enrolling in eleven different universities in seven distinct study abroad locations.

Each city—Concepción, Santiago, Temuco, Valdivia, Valparaíso and Viña del Mar, and Villarrica—has its own local character.

Students come in at the intermediate-advanced level of Spanish and adhere to the Middlebury Language Pledge® to reap the benefits of linguistic immersion. By living and studying with Chileans and getting involved in the community through volunteer work, internships, and extracurricular activities, students can build authentic relationships and integrate fully into life in their host city.

Four students walk in the desert. Their reflections are seen in a pool.

Special Tracks

The School in Chile offers several distinct tracks of study:

Human Rights and Memory

Applied Studies in Health

Social Movements

Sustainability and Society

Middlebury Schools Abroad: Valparaiso, Chile

I think one of the most striking things about Valparaíso is that everything is all clumped together, and it just looks like this amazing kaleidoscope of colors and houses and streets and hills. It’s unlike any other place that I’ve ever been to. I was very worried when I came on Study Abroad that I was never gonna feel comfortable in a new place with a new language, with a new school.

But I have started to feel like I really am part of a community, one of the most interesting communities I’ve ever been a part of.

Middlebury Schools Abroad have an ethic of liberal arts, global action, and for me what that means is when you’re studying at Middlebury for the two and a half years before you go abroad, the Middlebury vision is instilled within you.

One of sustainability, everything that the liberal arts curriculum entails. And then you go abroad and you get this chance to implement that vision in however you see fit. Going abroad is about action, it’s about involvement with the local community. I think that my university and Middlebury are very similar in terms of what they want their students to get out of a study abroad experience.

They want you to go and they want you to be immersed, for you to be involved on multiple levels. My Middlebury experience has always been that outside of the class learning is equally valid, if not more useful, than inside of the classroom learning. That was something that I put into action in Chile.

I started the pilot program Manos Verdes, which means green hands, and it’s designed to take Chilean school children out into nature through field trips funded by Middlebury and Chile and by the sustainability funds that we have at our disposal. Really, what it’s trying to promote is hands-on learning for Chilean school children through direct contact with nature.

I got involved in the program because part of Middlebury’s program is to set students up with internships. If you can get kids out of the classroom into the environment as young as possible and give them an appreciation of where they live, then you set them up to be more engaged in their community, to care more about what happens to their community and to want to learn more.

Beyond just attending classes and meeting people from the native culture, I think a true Middlebury abroad experience is about emerging in a deeper sense and it’s that two-way street of the student benefiting and the community benefiting.

Being involved in Manos Verdes has helped me with my cultural immersion this semester.

I feel like I’m sort of in the same situation they are, on a six month field trip. I would love to say that I’ve made an impact, at least a little bit of an impact with something as simple as a field trip, or something as simple as going in and working with them for a couple of hours every week.

It was the highlight of my semester because I put my Middlebury education into action.

Studying abroad is kind of, you don’t know what’s going to happen and I got really lucky I picked the right place and I’m really happy to be here. I feel like I’ve gotten a lot back.

Through the example of Manos Verdes, I hope people will realize that it’s really easy and also really necessary to have a deeper involvement in the community that you’re studying abroad in.


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