Program Overview

Up to fifteen thousand students enroll annually at the co-educational Universidad de Cuenca. Study abroad at the U Cuenca and earn credits towards your degree, while being immersed in the warm-hearted Ecuadorian culture and learning Spanish.

Study at U Cuenca and enjoy all the facilities this campus has to offer, from libraries and sports facilities to administrative and student support services.


U Cuenca has made its mission to train professionals and scientists who are committed to improving quality of life globally within the context of interculturalism and sustainability. Benefit from U Cuenca’s principles of equality and creativity when you study abroad here, within the rich cultural environment of Cuenca. Immerse yourself in the way of life in this bustling city while you improve your Spanish and inter-cultural skills.


  • Approval received from the home university.
  • Current official undergraduate degree transcript.
  • Valid passport until at least 6 months after your program end date. Copy of your passport (photo page).
  • Most students will be required to obtain a study visa. The application process can be extensive but World Endeavors staff will walk you through it!


Cuenca is a picturesque city in southern Ecuador, with a laidback, almost small-town atmosphere. Stroll around the UNESCO-listed city center with its colonial buildings, enjoy a coconut ice cream on a bench at the Parque Abdon Calderon and watch the vibrant passing parade, or visit some of the historical monuments, like the Monastery of El Carmen de Asuncion with its colorful flower market.

Visit the bustling indigenous market of Mercado 10 de Agosto, which is close to the city center. Buy reasonably-priced fresh fruit and vegetables here while you practice your Spanish with the friendly vendors. Or head out of the city to visit the surrounding areas on one of the many day trips available.


Contact us for housing information in Cuenca, Ecuador

Life in Cuenco

Study abroad in Cuenca, the capital city of the Azuay province of Ecuador, in the highlands of Ecuador. This charming city known for its textiles and crafts like hats and shoes, is where the straw hats, known globally as Panama hats, are made. Stroll through this UNESCO-listed city with its historical buildings, cathedrals and beautiful parks, immerse yourself in the colorful culture and festivals, and learn Spanish while you study.

This city where four rivers meet, is a good base from which to set off on a hiking adventure, where you can hike from the Andes mountains down into the Amazon rainforest.

Support whilst in Ecaudor

World Endeavors study abroad programs offer full support, starting with airport pickup and accommodation transfer upon arrival followed by an on-site orientation covering health, safety, and local tips. Emergency support from your in-country coordinator, 24/7 travel medical insurance, and continuous contact with your advisor for additional assistance throughout the program helps you feel secure and supported. Whatever challenges life throws your way, we’ve got you covered!


Academic credit and transcripts are issued by the Universidad de Cuenca after the successful completion of the program. The Universidad de Cuenca is a fully-accredited, state-recognized institution of higher learning. The teaching here will help you develop the skills you need to succeed, with a mix of lecture-style tuition and practical experience.

The World Endeavors process is designed to take the guesswork out of academic credit and credit transfers. Our experienced advisors work with each student and his or her academic advisor before the program begins to ensure students earn the credit expected for courses taken abroad.


Applicants to study abroad with World Endeavors must have completed high school (or equivalent), and, in most cases, must be at least 18 years of age. While some programs have minimum GPA requirements and require that applicants be currently enrolled in a college or university, others are open to all participants regardless of age or student status. Please contact a World Endeavors advisor for more detailed eligibility criteria.

Course Load

Courses at the Universidad de Cuenca are lecture and seminar-based, with significant independent study expected. We recommend students take only four courses per semester, with a max of 18 credits.

What's Included/ Costs


  • Dedicated Program Advisor who is accessible and experienced
  • Tuition: 12-18 credits per semester (up to 5 courses)
  • Academic transcript from Universidad de Cuenca
  • Pre and post arrival orientation; re-entry guidance
  • Student services and learning support
  • Access to university facilities
  • 24/7 emergency phone support
  • Airport reception and welcome
  • Student housing accommodations
  • Comprehensive travel medical insurance
  • Travel visa guidance and support
  • Advice on how to get a local phone number


  • Round-trip transportation to Cuenca
  • Visa expenses
  • Optional trips and excursions
  • Textbooks and other course materials
  • Daily transportation
  • Personal expenses
Study in Cuenca, Ecuador (Universidad de Cuenca)
Cost: $12,520

Dates & Deadlines

Spring Semester 2024: February to June

Deadline: November 20, 2023

Fall Semester 2024:  September to December

Application Deadline: June 20, 2024

Program dates listed are for reference only and are subject to change. Please wait until after acceptance and you have received the confirmed dates to book any flights.

Every World Endeavors Study Abroad Program Includes

Our study abroad programs are as unique as our destinations, but there are program features that unify all of our study experiences.


  • Top accredited universities
  • Flexible durations – 2 to 4 weeks to a full academic year
  • Expansive destination options
  • English instruction offered in all locations


  • Vetted campus accommodations selected with quality and safety in mind
  • Friendly community of peers from local host country and around the world


  • Dedicated one-on-one advisor
  • Local on-site coordinator


  • Airport pickup
  • Pre-arrival and on-site orientation
  • 24/7 local support
  • Activities and cultural engagement
  • On-campus social events, clubs and sports


  • Professional assistance and collaboration with home institution on course approvals and credit transfers
  • Transcript received directly from university abroad


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


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.


In Ecuador, there are plenty of exciting activities to enjoy during your spare time. Here are some suggestions:

  • Explore the Amazon Rainforest: Nature enthusiasts can embark on guided jungle tours, spot diverse wildlife, and experience the rich biodiversity of the region.
  • Hike the Andes Mountains: Explore the stunning landscapes of the Andes on popular treks, such as the Quilotoa Loop.
  • Visit Historical Cities: Wander through Ecuador’s historic cities like Quito and Cuenca, where you can admire colonial architecture, visit museums, and soak in the local culture.
  • Enjoy Local Cuisine: Delight your taste buds with Ecuadorian cuisine, including ceviche, empanadas, llapingachos (potato patties), and delicious tropical fruits.
  • Experience Indigenous Markets: Visit indigenous markets like Otavalo Market, where you can buy unique handicrafts, textiles, and traditional souvenirs.

Not sounding like the right program for you? Try our program finder to filter based on your choices.

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Recent Testimonials

JillianStudy in France

I realized once I got back that I learned more than I thought I did—not that I didn’t think I learned a lot, already. Three of my goals were to make more international friends (check), amp up my French comprehension (check), and expand my worldview (check).

EdenStudy in Spain

Honestly it was the best semester I’ve ever had. I met so many people and learned so many things. I found a new love for a different country. I would definitely recommend World Endeavors to anyone who wants a life-changing experience!

JenniferStudy in Spain

My advisor at World Endeavors was absolutely excellent! Her expertise and delightful people skills were exactly what sealed the deal, making World Endeavors my final decision for study abroad.”

AliciaStudy in Thailand

I have to say that what I remember, as much as the delicious colors and flavors of Thailand, are the people I crossed paths with – the other students who became such good friends, and the local Thais who showed me such kindness. And of course the food. I still dream of the food.”

HeatherStudy in England

It was amazing to be able to say I traveled to six countries in one semester.

KristenIntern in Morocco

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

Ecuador FAQs

Are the Galapagos Islands part of Ecuador?

The Galapagos Islands are part of Ecuador, located approximately 1,000 kilometers off the Ecuadorian coast. The archipelago is considered an Ecuadorian province and part of the country’s national park system.

Is Ecuador a Developing Country?

Ecuador is considered a developing country because of its lower Human Development Index value than many others, meaning that Ecuador has a lower GDP, higher poverty levels, and fewer public services than other countries.

Is Ecuador a Safe Place to Travel?

Generally, Ecuador is a safe country for travelers. However, it’s essential to take precautions to ensure your safety. Keep valuables secure and be aware of your surroundings at all times, use caution when traveling in certain areas at night, and avoid carrying large amounts of cash.

What is the population of Ecuador?

According to the World Bank, Ecuador has an estimated population of 18 million people.

What language does Ecuador speak?

The primary language spoken in Ecuador is Spanish.

How to apply for a Study Abroad Program

You’ve decided to study abroad – congratulations! Applying for your World Endeavors program is easy and stress-free. Get ready to CHANGE YOUR WORLD!


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


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


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


You’ve researched, planned and saved. Now you’re ready to study and explore like never before!