Study in Ecuador
Graduate programs in Ecuador
Home to the Galapagos, historic cities like Cuenca and Quito and remote Andean villages filled with textiles and sprawling markets, Ecuador is a South American country unlike any other.
It’s also a country that is rapidly developing its education system, with bursaries and scholarships for international students willing to study here and a growing reputation for science, technology and engineering.
So, if you want the beauty of life in an Incan idyll mixed with the sophistication of a modern Latin country, you should come and study a graduate program in Ecuador.
Ecuador is developing its education system to improve university standards and in order to gather more international students. Standard aptitude tests are being introduced into universities and the government is clamping down on institutions that fail to show to requisite level of teaching ability – with those who fail to hit targets being shut down.
There are 29 public universities in Ecuador, but not all offer graduate programs. Indeed, postgraduate study is an area Ecuador is attempting to improve on, by offering scholarships of US$6,000 to international students looking to study in Ecuador.
Immigration and visas in Ecuador
Students coming to study a graduate program in Ecuador will need to get a study visa or a cultural exchange visa before travelling to Ecuador.
In order to get your visa, you will need to show the following:
- Original passport valid for six months after the end of the course
- Copy of a letter of acceptance from an approved Ecuadorean institution
- Proof of finances for the duration of the stay
As with all visa applications, you should check with the local embassy or consulate in your country.
Life in Ecuador
Ecuador is a country full of history, intrigue and culture. Formerly the northernmost outpost of the Incan civilisation, Ecuador is home to several UNESCO World Heritage sites, including Cuenca and capital city Quito.
Ecuadorean cuisine plays a big part in life here. Most dishes focus on the meat or fish element, with bread, plantains and rice featuring regularly.
Working in Ecuador
Ecuador’s economy is improving, with growth every year between 2000 and 2012. Unemployment has also fallen during this period as Ecuador looks to develop itself. Oil and energy production accounts for a large part of Ecuador’s economy, while agriculture –particularly bananas and cocoa –is also a major employer.
International students studying a graduate program in Ecuador may find it difficult to get work, but those with good Spanish skills may be able to find work in translation or language classes.
Most international students coming to study a graduate program in Ecuador will live in private accommodation or in a homestay with a family. Your chosen university should be able to help you find somewhere to live, but if not, it’s worth booking into a hotel or hostel for an extended period to give yourself a chance to adjust to life in a new country.
Accommodation in major cities like Quito will often be more expensive than in smaller villages. A homestay will allow you to immerse yourself in Ecuadorean life and should also stop you getting too lonely or homesick.
As a guide, you should expect to pay around the following:
- University dorm - $300 per month
- Homestay - $350 per month
- Private apartment - $200-300 per month
Climate in Ecuador
Ecuador’s climate varies greatly from place to place as it is largely dependent on the altitude of each city. For example, Ecuador’s coastal area has a tropical climate with a heavy rainy season. The Andean highlands are dry and warm, while the Amazon basin has rainforest climate.
Ecuador’s location near the equator means that it get a similar amount of daylight hours throughout the year.
Ecuador has been upgrading its transport facilities in recent years, building new roads to connect longer distance villages and cities and also contact with other countries. Ecuador has also been redeveloping its rail network in a bid to attract more tourists.
Ecuador has two international airports which cater for foreign students. Guayaquil on the southeastern tip recently opened an impressive new terminal, while capital Quito opened a new airport in 2013.
The currency of Ecuador is the United States dollar.
What to do next
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