Nestled in a narrow valley surrounded by the green slopes of the Andes, the Ecuadoran capital of Quito is one of the most picturesque cities in Latin America. Once the northern capital of the Inca empire, it became an important colonial center under the Spanish and is now a cosmopolitan, modern city of over one million inhabitants. Because of its high elevation (over 9,000 feet) and location just a few miles from the equator, Quito also enjoys a year-round spring-like climate. Although relatively small in size, Ecuador offers a fascinating diversity of geography and cultures. The tropical forests of the Oriente, the beaches of the Costa, and the indigenous market towns of the Andes can all be found within a few hours bus ride of the capital, while the ecological wonders of the Galapagos islands can be reached by boat or plane.
Universidad San Francisco de Quito, or USFQ, is a private, non-denominational liberal arts university with about 2,500 students. Located on a beautiful modern campus on the outskirts of Quito in the town of Cumbayá, USFQ in many ways resembles a small liberal arts college in the U.S., combining personal attention and small class sizes with outstanding facilities and the advantages of a big-city environment.
USFQ offers courses in agriculture, architecture, biological sciences, business, chemistry, design, engineering, environmental science, humanities, media studies/ communications, social sciences, contemporary arts (digital arts, cinema and video, graphic design, contemporary music), gastronomy, and tourism and hospitality.
In addition, the Foreign Language Institute offers special Spanish grammar, conversation, and civilization courses for foreign students at intermediate and advanced levels. Students must have taken through FLS 202 in order to participate on this program. Click here to learn more about the Language Requirement and Spanish Placement Exam at USFQ.
USFQ Colleges and Programs
The Transfer Credit Database lists courses that have been previously approved at USFQ. Please note: their applicability to a specific degree program varies by department. This list is not inclusive. Additional courses can be approved for credit by using the course approval form and process, which is a part of the application for study abroad. Please refer to the academic information on the host institution website for all courses available to study abroad students.
All international students are housed with carefully selected Ecuadorian host families living in the city of Quito. The homestay includes breakfast, dinner and laundry service. Wifi access will also be available. Students commute by public transportation to the USFQ campus which is located in the valley called Cumbayá. It takes about 45 minutes to travel from the city of Quito to the USFQ campus.
Apply for a passport ASAP. If you already have a passport, make sure that it will be valid for 6 months after you return from your program. USFQ will help you with the visa process.
The fall semester runs from late August to mid-December and the spring semester from early January to mid-May. Consult the Academic Calendar for more precise dates.
- Cost information is shown in the Fall and Spring budget links, above.
- Financial aid is generally available to help qualified NC State students meet the expenses of study abroad.
- For additional funding, NC State students should consider applying for a study abroad scholarship, and check out other ideas for funding study abroad.
- *Direct Enroll Option- In the event of limited exchange spaces, students can be accepted to USFQ and will attend via the Direct Enroll (non-exchange) option. Those students who are accepted to the program as non-exchange will pay tuition and fees directly to Universidad San Francisco de Quito. Please consult the program budget sheet for cost details.The Direct Enroll tuition is substantially less expensive than out-of-state tuition. Therefore it is considered a great cost-effective study abroad option for out-of-state students!
The University reserves the right to alter the program format and/or costs in case of conditions beyond its control. If the program is canceled or a student withdraws, a refund of program costs may not be available in all cases. Please refer to the Study Abroad Office Refund Policy for details.
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