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Overview of Internship Programs in Costa Rica

With a thriving economy and an international reputation as a premier eco-tourism destination, Costa Rica offers interns the best of many worlds. Those looking to enhance their work experience while enjoying a new, warm culture and climate will find the perfect fit while interning in Costa Rica.

World Endeavors offers internships in a wide range of professional fields in Costa Rica, and our advisors are proud of their ability to find great opportunities in unique and highly specialized fields.

WHY DO AN INTERNSHIP IN COSTA RICA

Costa Rica’s biodiversity and natural beauty make it an ideal destination for students interested in environmental conservation, biology, or sustainable development. As one of the most biodiverse countries on the planet, you’ll have the chance to work on innovative projects, conduct research in lush rainforests, and contribute to wildlife conservation efforts. Additionally, the country’s eco-tourism initiatives and commitment to sustainability provide valuable insights into alternative approaches to environmental protection and community development, which can be highly beneficial for those pursuing careers in related fields.

Costa Rica’s warm and welcoming culture offers a unique opportunity to immerse yourself in a Spanish-speaking, Latin American setting. Engaging with locals and fellow interns can enhance your language skills and cross-cultural communication, fostering personal growth and broadening your worldview. Overall, interning in Costa Rica offers a harmonious blend of professional growth, cultural immersion, and exposure to innovative conservation practices in a stunning tropical setting.

COSTA RICA INTERNSHIP HIGHLIGHTS

Here are just a few of the best things about interning in Costa Rica:

  • Engage in hands-on projects and research, surrounded by the incredible biodiversity of Costa Rica, working towards protecting its unique ecosystems and wildlife.
  • Immerse yourself in the warm and welcoming Costa Rican culture, practice your Spanish language skills, and form meaningful connections with locals and fellow interns.
  • Contribute to the country’s sustainable development initiatives, gaining valuable experience in implementing eco-friendly practices and promoting responsible tourism.
  • Explore Costa Rica’s natural wonders during your free time, with opportunities for thrilling activities such as surfing, hiking, zip-lining, and experiencing the beauty of rainforests and beaches.

Our Costa Rica Internship Programs

Browse all of our internship programs in Costa Rica below. If you can’t find a suitable internship, check out our main program finder to continue your search for internships beyond Costa Rica.

Intern Abroad
Costa Rica

Pediatric or Geriatric Occupational Therapy Internship in Costa Rica

Intern with an organization that provides therapies and early interventions for children with developmental delays - regardless of their income.

Pediatric or Geriatric Occupational Therapy Internship in Costa Rica

Intern with an organization that provides therapies and early interventions for children with developmental delays – regardless of their income. This clinic uses play as the main vehicle for teaching. Interns have exposure to other therapies like physical therapy and speech/language therapy to get a big picture view of developmental interventions.

Join the welcoming team at an elderly care facility, where you will assist with OT sessions along with daily health and wellness routines. Interns also gain experience with a wide range of therapeutic techniques, in addition to OT.

Intern Abroad
Costa Rica

Pediatric Occupational Therapy Internship in Costa Rica

Intern with an organization that provides therapies and early interventions for children with developmental delays - regardless of their income.

Pediatric Occupational Therapy Internship in Costa Rica

Intern with an organization that provides therapies and early interventions for children with developmental delays – regardless of their income. This clinic uses play as the main vehicle for teaching. Interns have exposure to other therapies like physical therapy and speech/language therapy to get a big picture view of developmental interventions.

Intern Abroad
Costa Rica

Occupational Therapy Internship in Costa Rica

The involvement of Occupational Therapy interns in clinics and hospitals across Costa Rica fosters experiential learning, enabling them to assimilate the intricacies of patient care and other domains within their field under the guidance of occupational therapists.

Occupational Therapy Internship in Costa Rica

The involvement of Occupational Therapy interns in clinics and hospitals across Costa Rica fosters experiential learning, enabling them to assimilate the intricacies of patient care and other domains within their field under the guidance of occupational therapists.

Intern Abroad
Costa Rica

Youth Development Internship in Costa Rica

Interns specializing in Youth Development in Costa Rica collaborate with seasoned educators to contribute to a range of initiatives, such as designing and facilitating workshops, providing coaching for sports teams, coordinating entertaining youth plays, and organizing exciting family night events.

Youth Development Internship in Costa Rica

Interns specializing in Youth Development in Costa Rica collaborate with seasoned educators to contribute to a range of initiatives, such as designing and facilitating workshops, providing coaching for sports teams, coordinating entertaining youth plays, and organizing exciting family night events.

Intern Abroad
Costa Rica

Web and Graphic Design Internship in Costa Rica

When interning in Costa Rica's vibrant design industry, Web and Graphic Design interns have the incredible opportunity to work alongside highly skilled professionals in design firms, marketing agencies, or the design departments of major companies.

Web and Graphic Design Internship in Costa Rica

When interning in Costa Rica’s vibrant design industry, Web and Graphic Design interns have the incredible opportunity to work alongside highly skilled professionals in design firms, marketing agencies, or the design departments of major companies. Their main responsibility is to develop eye-catching marketing materials, aesthetically pleasing web pages, memorable logos, and other visually engaging visuals for corporate clients.

Intern Abroad
Costa Rica

Social Work Internship in Costa Rica

Through their involvement with nonprofit or government organizations, Social Work interns in Costa Rica engage in activities that support individual clients and contribute to community outreach initiatives and public health and safety programs.

Social Work Internship in Costa Rica

Through their involvement with nonprofit or government organizations, Social Work interns in Costa Rica engage in activities that support individual clients and contribute to community outreach initiatives and public health and safety programs.

Intern Abroad
Costa Rica

Public Health Internship in Costa Rica

In Costa Rica, Public Health interns partner with government agencies and nonprofit organizations, working alongside public health officials on diverse initiatives that prioritize disease and injury prevention, community health assessment, environmental challenges, and the development of public policies.

Public Health Internship in Costa Rica

In Costa Rica, Public Health interns partner with government agencies and nonprofit organizations, working alongside public health officials on diverse initiatives that prioritize disease and injury prevention, community health assessment, environmental challenges, and the development of public policies.

Location

About Atenas

Costa Rica is known for its beautiful tropical landscape, and Atenas is the lucky recipient of the best climate in the world. With warm, sunny weather and equally warm locals, it is an ideal location for interns year-round. Atenas is a charming and relatively compact town; the area is known for agriculture, and the town is surrounded by plantations and the rich, lush landscape that is characteristic of Costa Rica. The city has everything an intern needs, including fitness centers, tennis courts, restaurants, banks, parks, shops, bars, and cafés. Local residents are incredibly warm and welcoming and are always willing to help visitors with their Spanish and show them around their hometown.

Dates & costs

Internships are available year-round, with flexible start dates and durations. Public holidays and seasonal work availability may impact certain start dates in some locations.

Please wait until after you are accepted into the program and you have received the confirmed arrival and departure dates before you book your flight.

Generally, the minimum program duration for interning in Costa Rica is 2 months. Contact World Endeavors if you would like to go for a shorter duration.

Eligibility

  • World Endeavors interns should be 18 years or older and should have a passport valid for at least 6 months from the start of their program.
  • Keep in mind that all countries have different visa restrictions for varying types of passports.
  • It is recommended to have a background in your desired internship field, but not absolutely required. Internship placement opportunities increase with experience or relevant coursework.
  • It is preferred that interns considering Costa Rica should have an intermediate level of Spanish language skills.

Housing

World Endeavors interns in Costa Rica live with local host families in Atenas in either single or shared rooms with shared bathrooms. They enjoy home-cooked Costa Rican food with their host families. Interns in certain fields, such as environmental conservation, may live in shared accommodations or lodges onsite at their project depending on location.

First Month: $3,190 | Each Additional Month: $1,290

Every World Endeavors Internship Program Includes

Our internships are as unique as the countries that host them, but there are program features that unify all of our internship experiences.

YOUR INTERNSHIP

  • Professional customized internship placement
  • Year-round program availability
  • Flexible durations from 2 to 6 months

CAREER READINESS PROGRAM

  • Resume clinic and interview skills workshop
  • One-on-one coaching
  • Professional competencies development

ACCOMMODATION

  • Variety of options available – host family, shared apartment, student residence
  • Vetted and selected with quality, safety and proximity to your placement in mind

CAREER AND ACADEMIC INTEGRATION

  • Re-entry handbook and support
  • Academic credit facilitation
  • Post-program assistance with resume updates and completion certificate
  • World Endeavors Alumni Network

TEAM OF EXPERTS

  • Dedicated one-on-one advisor
  • Local on-site coordinator
  • Internship placement supervisor

PEACE OF MIND

  • Comprehensive travel medical insurance
  • Mental Health First Aid-certified staff
  • 24/7 emergency travel assistance
  • Professional liability insurance

HEALTH & SAFETY

When you feel safe and respected abroad, you will flourish. World Endeavors participants are transformed through enriching, rewarding and safe experiences around the world. We meticulously monitor travel recommendations and will only facilitate programs where we can ensure our participants’ safety. 

We take key steps to ensure our participants’ well-being, including providing a pre-trip success guide, 24/7 local support, in-country trained staff, pre and post-arrival orientation, comprehensive travel medical insurance, and Mental Health First Aid-certified staff. Please contact us if you have any specific questions or concerns.

WHAT TO DO IN YOUR SPARE TIME IN COSTA RICA

While you’re in Costa Rica, you can enjoy a wide array of exciting activities and experiences. Here are some things you can do in your spare time in Costa Rica:

  • Explore National Parks and Reserves: Discover Costa Rica’s stunning biodiversity by visiting its numerous national parks and wildlife reserves. Explore places like Manuel Antonio National Park, Monteverde Cloud Forest Reserve, Arenal Volcano National Park, and Tortuguero National Park to witness diverse flora and fauna.
  • Eco-Tourism and Adventure Sports: Engage in eco-friendly activities such as zip-lining through the treetops, white-water rafting down rushing rivers, or taking a canopy tour to experience the country’s natural wonders up close.
  • Learn to Surf: Costa Rica is a surfer’s paradise with great waves suitable for all skill levels. Sign up for surf lessons and ride the waves along the Pacific coast.
  • Experience Tico Culture: Engage with the locals, known as “Ticos” and “Ticas,” to experience the warm and friendly Costa Rican culture. Participate in traditional events, sample local cuisine, and learn about their customs.

How to choose the best Internship program

Choosing your internship program is easy when you evaluate your priorities. Follow these steps to guide you toward your ideal program.

Explore a New Career

Interning abroad offers a great opportunity to explore your professional and personal interests, and help define your career path. Peruse our internship fields and past examples to find the best fit.

Choose Your Dream Destination

Finding a meaningful way to combine interning and travel to your dream location is a big incentive. Carefully consider which destinations suit your interests and international internship goals.

Improve Language Skills

Immersing yourself in a language-rich environment is the ultimate method for developing fluency. If language-learning is your goal, favor destinations that use your language of choice.

Fit your budget

Explore scholarships and financial aid to determine if these may impact your destination options. Consider the overall cost of the program and cost of living in-country to identify the optimal match.

Try our program finder to filter based on your choices.

SEARCH

Academic Credit

Do you want to earn academic credit for your international internship? Nearly half of World Endeavors participants earn credit while interning abroad. Many students are required to participate in an internship to fulfill a requirement for their degree program. World Endeavors works closely with students and their academic advisors to ensure that our program meets those requirements. If you don’t fall into that category there is another exciting option for you. Through our collaboration with University of California Berkeley, students can earn UC Berkeley credit by taking one of two online courses while interning abroad.

INTERNSHIP CREDIT INFORMATION

Recent Testimonials

TrentIntern in Australia

I gained a stronger sense of independence. I have always been self-motivated but this program gave me the reassurance to take on new experiences.

MeganIntern in Australia

I’m now better prepared and excited for my upcoming classes because my internship provided me with relevant experiences. Being an international intern helped me step out of my comfort zone and gain self-knowledge, which was my goal.

NidishIntern in Argentina

I’m very happy with how the program went. It was such a great experience -
I want to go back.

BrittanyIntern in Czech Republic

It was so empowering for me - a huge boost to my self esteem!

AltairIntern in Costa Rica

“It was way more than I ever expected. I wanted to do this because I’m applying to med school - It’s been life-changing and so worth my time. I feel like I got so lucky.

KristenIntern in Morocco

It was amazing! Don’t be afraid to step outside of your comfort zone - the spontaneous adventures are gold!

WhitneyIntern in Costa Rica

Absolutely amazing. I learned so many new things I had never learned before and I’m still in touch with my host family.

BridgetIntern in Czech Republic

I went into it having high expectations and everything was completely fulfilled. I learned a lot - it was amazing.

CourtneyIntern in Ecuador

Oh my goodness, it was incredible! It was so cool! I got to travel and see and do much more than I was anticipating! My Spanish improved so much while I was there! I definitely got a lot of experience in OT, and was able to clock all of my shadowing hours for OT school.

Costa Rica FAQs

How Big is Costa Rica?

Costa Rica has a total area of 51,100 square kilometers, making it 19,730 square miles.

Is Costa Rica Expensive?

Costa Rica is a relatively affordable destination, depending on your lifestyle choices. As a popular tourist destination, it holds luxury and convenience outlets that allow visitors to enjoy more exclusive services. It also hosts visitors looking to explore its natural beauty without breaking the bank through affordable living options.

Is Costa Rica Safe to Travel to?

Costa Rica is generally considered a safe travel destination for tourists. It has a reputation for being one of the safer countries in Central America. However, like any travel destination, it’s essential to exercise caution and be aware of your surroundings to ensure a safe and enjoyable trip.

What Language Do They Speak in Costa Rica?

The official language spoken in Costa Rica is Spanish. Spanish is the country’s primary language for communication, government, education, and business. While Spanish is the dominant language, you may also find some English speakers in tourist areas, particularly in the hospitality and tourism industries.

What Currency Does Costa Rica Use?

Costa Rica’s official currency is the Costa Rican Colón, often denoted by the symbol “₡” or the code “CRC”. However, despite the official currency, US dollars are widely accepted in many tourist areas, and it’s common for businesses, hotels, and restaurants to display prices in both Colónes and US dollars.

What Should You Wear in Costa Rica?

In Costa Rica, wear lightweight clothing like t-shirts, shorts, and dresses in breathable materials. Use sandals or water-resistant shoes for beaches and closed-toe or hiking sandals for activities. Sun protection with a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen is vital. Also, pack lightweight long-sleeve clothes for insect protection and cooler evenings.

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Our Top Intern Abroad Destinations

World Endeavors volunteers support communities in several destinations in Africa, the Americas, Asia and Oceania. Our programs are located in a variety of sites, including urban and rural, economically developed and developing, and English-speaking and non-English speaking.

How to apply for an Internship Abroad

You’ve decided to intern abroad – congratulations! Applying for your World Endeavors program is easy and stress-free. Get ready to PUT YOURSELF OUT THERE!

STEP 1
EXPLORE & ASK

Research and compare. If you can’t decide on a program, we can guide you toward the best fit.

STEP 2
SUBMIT YOUR APPLICATION

Fill out our online application form to share all your relevant details with our team.

STEP 3
ENROLL & PREPARE

Receive your official acceptance and enroll. We’ll give you all the info you need to get ready!

STEP 4
START YOUR ADVENTURE!

You’ve researched, planned and saved. Now you’re ready to gain skills and grow your network abroad!