Spend January Term exploring the ecological diversity of the Galápagos Islands, Ecuador, with AIFS! Study environmental science at the Universidad San Francisco de Quito (USFQ), a leader in education, research, creativity and entrepreneurship in Latin America.
** Starting J Term 2023 and onward, students participating in our Ecuador programs will need to have COVID vaccinations and at least one booster dose. Students without these doses will not be allowed to participate in the USFQ program. **
The AIFS inclusive program fee includes all of the great features below in addition to many pre-departure, on-site and upon-return services to help students make the most of their time abroad.Review Our Policies
3 semester credits
Course in environmental science
with local families on San Cristóbal Island. Hotel accommodation is provided for the Quito and Santa Cruz Island sections of the program
Breakfast and lunch in Quito, 3 meals a day on San Cristóbal and breakfast and lunch on Santa Cruz
Quito, Ecuador (2 nights at the start of the program and 2 nights at the end) and Santa Cruz Island, Galápagos (2 nights)
Guided tour of Quito’s historic center and the Middle of the World Monument or Otavalo Market, visits to Frigate Bird Hill, El Junco Lake, La Galapaguera, La Lobería Beach, snorkeling excursion to Kicker Rock, Puerto Chino and Isla Lobos
To help you get to know your classmates better, familiarize you with the local area and advise you about your stay
To help with any questions or advice you may need throughout the program
24/7 emergency support and comprehensive insurance
Round trip flights U.S.-Quito-U.S.
Round trip transfers between the airport and campus overseas
Students will stay with a carefully selected homestay family in San Cristóbal. By staying with local families, you will gain a unique insight into island life and how the locals live and work.
Hotel accommodation is provided in Quito and Santa Cruz Island with breakfast and lunch provided.
San Cristóbal is the easternmost island in the Galápagos archipelago and has a population of about 6,000 inhabitants.
San Cristobal is where Darwin first set foot to write his famous book, “On the Origin of Species.”
San Cristóbal is home to many animals like sealions, marine iguanas, tortoises, and more!
AIFS provides a dedicated Resident Director for this program who will assist students throughout. Details and contact information will be available prior to the start of the program.
The Resident Director provides academic advice, introduces you to the community and handles communication with the University.
Learning does not begin or end in the classroom. Visits and field trips are a key part of your academic study in the Galápagos, while social and cultural activities in Quito give you a better understanding of Ecuador, the South American country which governs the islands. Past activities have included:
USFQ and AIFS promote conservation and sustainable tourism in the Galápagos Islands through education and research. All visits on the islands are to designated visitor sites.
Many activities involve snorkelling – participants should be able to swim and be confident in water.
Includes visits to the Charles Darwin Research Station and the Lava Java Organic Coffee Plantation farm, accommodations, breakfasts, one lunch, and round trip transportation. Students get one free afternoon to explore.
Students can select an optional transportation package for all AIFS programs. Students who choose to book their own flights should meet up with group at the program location and will need to make their own ground transportation arrangements.
Below are fees by departure city based on average historical costs and subject to change. If you select this option on your application, the total flight package price will be confirmed in your account 6 months prior to departure. (Program fee is guaranteed.)