Livin' the "Virtual" Pura Vida

Ryan Hughes, Christine Aguglia and Elizabeth Roth

Pura Vida, or the Pure Life, in Spanish, is Costa Rica's motto.

Pura Vida, or the Pure Life, in Spanish, is Costa Rica's motto.

Undergraduate Student Project

Introduction

Costa Rica is a country known for its tourism, gorgeous landscape, and iconic coffee farms. In such a small country, Costa Rica is one of the most popular tourist spots in the world. This Spring, during our break, our team was supposed to journey to this small country in Central America to learn more about the tourist industry, coffee farm operations, and additional business functions that help Costa Rica to continue to be one of the most attractive countries on people's "must-travel" list. With the unfortunate news of the coronavirus cancelling all study abroad activities, we needed to find a way to ensure that, even though we couldn't experience the trip first hand, we still had some glimpse into what the experience would have been like. So, we developed a plan to meet with our host families that we were supposed to be staying with, to talk to them about how this drastic global change has affected them as well. Through asking questions pertaining to emotions, the economy, society, and the outlook on future experiences, our team was able to learn more about Costa Rica, and what we could expect should we have the opportunity to travel there one day.

Abstract

With the emergence of the coronavirus outbreak, our team was unable to attend our Spring Break Study Abroad in Costa Rica. While in Costa Rica we were supposed to have the experience of staying with host families while we were learning and immersing ourselves in Costa Rican business culture. Although we could not attend this highly enriching trip, and learn more about the social innovation and entrepreneurial leadership that occurred throughout the country, through the use of technology and the helpful people of Costa Rica, our team was able to sit down and virtually meet with our host families to gain a glimpse of what our trip might have been like. Through a series of categorical questions and personalized conversations, our team was able to learn of what it may have been like to stay in our host family's homes, and truly live the Pura Vida while with them.

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