Skip to content

Programs : Brochure

This page is the brochure for your selected program. You can view the provided information for this program on this page and click on the available buttons for additional options.
  • Locations: Coetzalan, Mexico; Mexico City, Mexico; Oaxaca, Mexico; Puebla, Mexico
  • Program Terms: Summer
  • Restrictions: PSU applicants only
  • Budget Sheets: Summer
Fact Sheet:
Education Abroad Adviser:
Sarah Spiegel
Minimum GPA:
Class Standing:
2 - Sophomore
Language of Instruction:
Language Requirement:
0 - 2 semesters
Internship Available:
Fields of Study:
Art, Spanish
Program Description:
Puebla, Mexico Spanish Language Art and Mexican Culture_street view of Puebla, Mexico

Program Overview

Dispelling cultural stereotypes through immersion in the daily life of Mexico is the thrust of the summer program in Puebla. Studying the arts, culture, and history of central Mexico creates the context for the program. Living with carefully selected Mexican families helps Penn State students develop their language skills while experiencing firsthand the cultural treasures of Mexico. This 9-credit program offers students a unique, creative environment and exposure to a variety of experiences.

Map of mexico with Puebla highlightedLocated on a high mountain plain in central Mexico, Puebla is a large city with a small-town atmosphere. A planned city established in 1532 by the Spaniards, Puebla also reflects the pre-Columbian heritage of the region. The city is known for its Spanish colonial architecture and its concentration of contemporary artists and cultural activities. Only eighty miles south of Mexico City, Puebla sits in a rich archaeological area. Day trips to sites including Cholula -- the location of the largest pyramid in the world -- compose part of the educational experience. As part of the SPAN 497 class contact hours, there also are longer, overnight excursions to other archaeological sites and to some of the contemporary craft villages throughout Mexico. Classes are scheduled four days a week to provide students with long weekends for independent travel as well.

Program Quicklinks     

Course Offerings
Housing and Meals
Program Costs
Financial Aid & Scholarships
More Information
How to Apply
Other Useful Links

Education Abroad Credits

All students are required to take 9 credits.

Required Course

The following course is mandatory for ALL students. 

SPAN 497 Special Topics: Central Mexican Culture and Civilization (3 credits) 

This course will provide an introduction to Mexican culture and art from pre-Columbian to contemporary. In addition, the course will provide students with experiential learning opportunities via service learning in Puebla. In this way the course will provide both a historical overview and an experiential cultural component in contemporary Mexican society. As part of the course, we will take three multiday cultural trips and visit a number of major archeological sites. 
Street lined with colorful houses in Puebla


Select one of the following language courses:

SPAN 199 Foreign Study: Beginning Conversational Spanish (equivalent to SPAN 003) (3 credits) 

Grammar review and practice in oral expression and aural comprehension. 
Prerequisite: SPAN 002 or equivalent proficiency

SPAN 399 Foreign Study: Spanish (3 credits) 

Intermediate or advanced grammar and language development. This course involves intensive conversation and reading. 
Prerequisite: SPAN 003 or equivalent proficiency


The Arts

Puebla boy holding an accordian

Select one of the following art courses:

SPAN 499 Foreign Study: Contemporary Mexican Literature, Culture, and Cinema (3 credits) 

This course is a study of fiction and other culture produced by a selection of Mexican authors and artists during the 20th and 21st centuries. This course is also taught in Spanish; the prerequisites are SPAN 215 and SPAN 253W.

ART 297: Special Topics (3 credits) 

Supervised instruction in the studio arts, focusing on one or more of the following areas: painting, drawing, photography, and collage/assemblage. There will be visits to the studios of artists who are working in contemporary art as well as traditional crafts.

You will receive credit for all academic courses taken at this institution, and all of your grades from abroad will count toward your Penn State cumulative GPA. You may not take any courses overseas on a Pass/Fail basis. Students may not take sport or physical activity courses (e.g. sailing, bowling, yoga, etc.) abroad. These courses will not be credited at Penn State.


Successful applicants will complete pre-requisities for the program.

  • 2.5 Cumulative GPA
  • Sophomore class standing or higher at time of study
  • Please note:  there are prerequisites for some of the courses listed in the course offerings section  

Housing and Meals

Students will stay with Mexican families in homestays. Most meals will be provided.

Program Costs

For more information on program costs, please be sure to review the Summer budget sheet. These budget sheets include information on costs that are billable to the bursar bill, as well as estimated additional costs. Costs vary by program, so it is important to review this information carefully.

Please note that tuition rates may vary depending on class standing.

Financial Aid & Scholarships

Penn State students studying through Education Abroad can use most components of their existing financial aid packages toward the cost of study abroad. This may include federal and state grants, VA educational benefits, federal student loans, and University scholarships and grants. Notable exceptions include work-study awards and some athletic scholarships.
The University Office of Global Programs also administers a number of grants and scholarships. Eligibility is based on academic excellence and/or financial need. There is also funding available for study abroad programs in diverse locations and for students from diverse backgrounds. In most cases, applicants should have a current year FAFSA on file with the Office of Student Aid. Funding opportunities may also be available through Penn State academic departments. For detailed information on financial aid and scholarship opportunities and application procedures, please visit the Funding Study Abroad section of the Global Penn State website.

For More Information

For more information about programs and education abroad at Penn State, we encourage you to meet with or contact our Peer Advisers. These study abroad returnees can explain program options, give an overview of the education abroad process, as well as provide information about his/her program. If you are not at University Park, contact your Campus Global Representative

For more information regarding this program, please contact Marco Martinez (director). You may also schedule an appointment with the education abroad adviser for this program.

For the inside scoop on life in a foreign country, be sure to check out the Student Spotlights of Penn State students currently studying abroad.

How to Apply

If you would like to participate on this study abroad program, you will need to apply to Penn State Education Abroad by clicking the "Apply Now" button on this page. 

You must complete the following materials in your application:

  •  Education Abroad Questionnaire
  •  One academic recommendation
  •  Signature Documents
Visit the How to Apply section of our website for more information.

Application deadline: February 1, 2018


Studying Abroad with a Disability

Many students with disabilities successfully study abroad each year. Please note that other cultures may have different attitudes and available accommodations regarding disabilities. While we cannot guarantee the accessibility of all program sites and locations, specific accommodations may be arranged in consultation with our office, the Student Disability Resources office, and our partners abroad. To prepare for success, students are strongly encouraged to research the country and program location to consider if and how they will manage their disabilities abroad in advance of selecting a program. Students with disabilities and other diverse backgrounds can begin their research on our Diversity Awareness Abroad page.

Other Useful Links

Steps to Study Abroad
Schedule an Appointment
Cost & Funding
Health & Safety
Parents & Family

Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Summer 2018 02/01/2018
02/14/2018 05/11/2018 06/23/2018
NOTE: Start date, May 11, is the date that students must arrive in Mexico City where a bus will be provided for transport to Puebla.

Indicates that deadline has passed