Understanding Immigration and Transnationalism



Program Description

This study abroad program offers students the opportunity to live in an UNESCO World Heritage site while studying Spanish and learning about the process of immigration and transnationalism from the US and Guatemalan perspectives. Students live with a Guatemalan host-family and receive one-on-one Spanish language training in the mornings and attend the immigration class two afternoons a week, leaving lots of time to explore the colonial city of Antigua (founded in the 1600s) and its many restaurants, cafes, cultural attractions, and historical sites. The program includes weekend excursions to scenic Lake Atítlán and Chichicastenango, as well as the Mayan ruins of Tikal. Students will also visit a local coffee farm, weaving cooperative, and have the opportunity to explore a live volcano and zipline through the tropical rainforest. The immigration course includes an academic service-learning component, working with a Guatemalan non-profit to provide classroom technology to a Guatemalan school. Learn Spanish, receive academic service learning credit, learn about the forces propelling the cycle of migration, and fall in love with one of the greatest cities in the world on this Guatemalan adventure.


Program Dates and Deadlines:
Term Year Application Deadline
(or as space permits)
Start Date/Check-in End Date/Check-out
Summer 2024 February 1, 2024

May 9, 2024

June 10, 2024

Program fee payment deadline:
See details below in program cost section. Program fees cannot be deffered. Plan accordingly. 

Information Sheet

Open to All academic disciplines. Priority given to WHC students until December 15. After December 15, all FAU students will be reviewed as space permits. All interested students should apply as soon as possible regardless of major/campus. Non-WHC students will be placed on an interest list and reviewed after December 15. 
Language of Instruction English and Spanish
Level of Study Undergraduate 
Credit Offered FAU credits
Program Primary Subject Political Science, Immigration, Transnationalism, international studies, and Spanish Language
Sponsoring College Wilkes Honors College


Program Course Offerings:

  • IDS 3932: Honors Interdisciplinary Study Abroad: Immigration and Transnationalism (3 credits) - Required for All Participants
  • SPN 2957: Spanish Conversation Abroad (3-4 credits) 
  • SPN 4905: Honors Spanish Language and Culture (3-4 credits)

Course Eligibility & Requirements:

Students participating on the program are required to take IDS 4957 and one of the SPN program course offerings for at least 6 credits total.  

Note your courses of interest on your study abroad application in the course section. 

Program Eligibility & Requirement

  • Must have a 3.0 overall GPA at the time of application for undergraduate students. Lower GPA's may be reviewed on a cases by case basis. 
  • Must be in good academic standing at the time of application
  • Must be eligible to take FAU courses during the study abroad program term
  • See Policies & Procedures page for more information

In-country Program Faculty Leader: Dr. Timothy Steigenga

Education Abroad Contact: Alex Baker

Wilkes Honors College Coordinator

Phone number: 561-799-8610

Phone number: 561-297-1039




Travel Documentation

Important notice! Passport processing times have changed. Review up-to-date details HERE.

Routine processing times can take 10-13 weeks, and expedited applications in 7-9 weeks. Processing times begin when your application is received by a passport agency or center, and do not include mailing times. It may take up to 2 weeks for your application to be received by passport agency, and up to 2 weeks for you to receive your completed passport after agency mails it to you. Therefore, you should add an additional 4 weeks to you passport application processing time. 

A valid passport is required for all international travel. If you are traveling anywhere abroad, you need a passport to board an international flight and to enter the country. Passport cards will not be accepted as form of I.D. You may be denied boarding if you travel with a passport that appears damaged or altered.

Some countries require that your passport be valid at least six months beyond the dates of your trip. Some airlines will not allow you to board if this requirement is not met. Check the Country Information to learn about entry and exit requirements for the country or countries in which you are traveling.  

If you are applying for a passport for the first time, you need to renew your passport, or you have any other passport questions, you can find information on the Travel.State.Gov website. In addition, several U.S. Embassies and Consulates provide information to assist applicants in collecting the documentation needed. For a list of Embassies, please visit U.S.


Antigua is a charming colonial city with many well-preserved artifacts and regal structures in the shadow of three volcanoes. The volcanoes can be hiked into the highlands to explore the lovely landscape as well as the city from above. The city is surrounded by tiny Mayan villages with vibrant local markets and coffee farms. 


Students will live with a Guatemalan family in a home within walking distance of the school and the town center. Two or more students will be placed with each family. The homestay includes three meals a day Monday through Friday and internet access within the home.  Housing assignments are communicated prior to arrival and are designed to match the needs and expectations of each program participant.



Program Cost and Funding

Financial Aid and Scholarship Information 

  • Students participating on FAU Faculty-led Programs may use eligible financial aid
  • Program participants may be eligible to apply for the FAU Education Abroad Scholarship
  • See additional scholarship and funding information here.


Program Cost

$3,815.00 program fee + tuition for the required program summer course(s). FAU in-state or out-of-state rates apply. 

Program fee payment deadlines: 
1ST PAYMENT:       $1,815 due 30 days from application acceptance or by February 11, 2024 (whichever date comes first)
2ND PAYMENT:      $2,000 due 75 days from application acceptance or by February 25, 2024 (whichever date comes first)

Accepted participants will receive detailed payment instructions and link to pay from the Education Abroad team via email after their application has been reviewed and accepted. Program fee payments cannot be deferred. Plan accordingly. 

Program Fee Includes:

  • Homestay accommodations from check-in through check-out date
  • International medical insurance
  • Roundtrip airport transport to and from Antigua
  • 3 meals a day M-F with host family 
  • 8+ group meals
  • 4 hours of one-on-one Spanish instruction M-F
  • Excursions and transportation to Lake Atítlán and lximche and Mayan ruins of Tikal
  • Round trip flight to Tikal
  • Antigua walking tour
  • Local afternoon excursions to a coffee farm, weaving cooperative, and other local excursions
  • Ziplinig activity
  • Guest lectures
  • Service learning experience

Activities and excursions are subject to change by faculty leader or program provider/vendor if needed. Replacement activity or excursion would be provided.

Program Fee Does Not Include :

  • $200 administrative fee paid at time of application submission
  • International flight
  • Tuition for courses/credits taken on program (FAU in-state and out-of-state rates apply)
  • Personal meals outside the family accommodation (such as at restaurants)
  • Personal spending money

Health, Safety and Travel Documentation

All students must attend pre-departure sessions prior to study abroad. Education Abroad and your program faculty leaders will provide you with further details pertaining to dates, times, and location in the semester before your program. 

1) Mandatory pre-departure orientation hosted by the Education Abroad office. This session will cover general international travel related topics such as health, safety, insurance, and travel tips. 
2) Mandatory pre-departure meeting hosted by program faculty leader. This session will cover program and location specific information such as arrival, expectations, itinerary, and course overview.

International health and travel insurance

All FAU students participating on an FAU Faculty-led Program will be registered in international health and travel insurance coverage through Cultural Insurance Services International (CISI). This mandatory insurance ensures that students have access to medical and emergency support services while abroad. This is included in the program cost.


  1. Reduced risk of denied entry if a country requires vaccination for entry
  2. Reduced risk of having to get vaccinated abroad if it becomes mandatory in the country of study
  3. Reduced risk of denied acceptance to one of our foreign universities
  4. Reduced risk of denied acceptance into campus housing or host accommodations abroad
  5. Reduced risk of spreading COVID-19 and its variants to other parts of the world, including the communities where we have programs
  6. Reduced risk of contracting COVID-19 while abroad, which could lead to missed classes and excursions, mandatory quarantine or isolation, and other disruptions to the program
  7. Increases student access to local events, services, and travel while abroad
  8. Provides more flexibility in planning study abroad extracurricular activities, including excursions
  9. The WHO and U.S. CDC agree that the vaccine helps reduce the risk of serious illness and helps prevent the spread of COVID-19
  10. Alongside our other prevention measures, the vaccine significantly increases protection for FAU faculty, staff, students, and international partners

Regarding increased access because of being vaccinated, please be aware that businesses and services may legally restrict access to exclude unvaccinated individuals. Local ordinances may allow the same. In such cases, FAU won’t be able to intervene or advocate on your behalf.