This journal excerpt is posted with permission of the the author, Charley Costa.
"I think it is safe to say that every student here recognizes that being in Costa Rica is an experience in itself. At the same time it is very easy to not take full advantage of the experience we have been given. We are in a country where so much is different from our country. There is so much to learn, see and do that it could keep us busy for the entire four month span. We all know this, yet how many of us are truly acting like this is a once in a lifetime experience? Many of us, myself included, spend an unbelievable amount of time on our computers. Skype, Email, Facebook and for that matter the internet in general make it so easy to stay in touch with our world at home that we don't cut the strings that are holding us back from discovering a whole new world (and yes, I realize that this is a cheesy song from Aladdin, but I feel it applies here). Life is truly what you make it, and we have been given a chance to make our lives much more interesting while broadening our horizons. We have been given this great opportunity and there is no question that in order to make it the best experience possible we need to go out and make this experience all it can be. There will always be things in life that will happen to us. Some of these things we can control while others are out of our control. What we do in these situations allows us to gain experience and become wiser and different people for the future."