Ecuador Study Abroad


Ecuador: Andes and Amazon Field School Quichua
Summer Program


Location: Napo Province, Ecuador

Dates: June 5, 2023-July 14, 2023

Program Summary:

The Andes and Amazon Field School in Ecuador, co-sponsored by FIU’s Kimberly Green Latin American and Caribbean Center, the University of Wisconsin at Madison, the University of Pittsburgh, and the University of Florida will immerse you in the culture and environment of the Amazon for a learning adventure you won’t forget. 

Amazonian Quichua is taught in English by Professors Tod D. Swanson, (Arizona State University), Armando Muyulema, (University of Wisconsin at Madison), Nely Shiguango and Bélgica Dahua. The program offers 140 hours of intensive classroom instruction to meet the requirements of the US Department of Education. Students are evaluated upon entry and again upon completion of the course using the IRIS testing instruments provided by the USDE. All students receive grades for courses.In addition to teaching grammar, vocabulary, the Quichua language is used as an anthropological linguistic window into Amazonian culture and worldview. The class frequently goes into the forest with traditional elders to learn about plants and animals in Quichua. Origin stories and songs to species are recorded in Quichua and translated in class. As ability in Quicha improves students formulate their own research questions in Quichua. While studying Quichua students also receive a grounding in Amazonian cultural thinking about the environment from top experts in the field. The program includes a 4 day canoe trip into the Waorani territory with Quichua native speakers. Students make lasting contacts with native communities for future dissertation work. Life changing for many. 219 FLAS Fellows from 40 Universities have attended since 2000.

Location Description:

The Andes and Amazon Field School is located at the Iyarina lodge in the Napo region of Ecuador. Iyarina is located on the South bank of the Napo River, 100 miles (220 km) east of Quito, and 17 kilometers from the town of Tena. Just 4 hours over a paved road from Quito. At approximately 600 meters (1965 feet) above sea level the area is characterized by small Quichua communities clustered along the river bank. The forest surrounding these communities is among the most bio-diverse in the world with a high number of endemic species of flora and fauna. Iyarina is located directly on the waterfront surrounded by a 1380 acre (630 hectare) rainforest reserve.


Students will be staying in spacious rooms that look out on the river and forest. Double or triple occupancy rooms are available. Bathrooms are in rooms with abundant hot water. High quality mattresses for a good rest. Students will sleep to the sound of frogs, the river, and heavy rain on the roof, and then wake to the sound of birds.

Three meals per day are provided in a dining room with an expansive view of the Napo River. A single menu du jour is served family style to all guests. Recipes include a mixture of Ecuadorian and American dishes with opportunities to savor Andean and Amazonian cuisine. Vegetarian meals are available. All meals are prepared with high standards of food safety.


June 5, 2023 - July 14, 2023

Program Cost:

$7,500.00 (covered by FLAS Fellowship). Broken down as Academic Program Fee: $5,000 + Room & Board: $2,500. 


Please email or call Tod D. Swanson, PhD, Director of the Andes and Amazon Field School, at or 480 276-5913 (just call, no appointment needed).

We accept all FLAS Fellows. Students from FLAS granting institutions should apply for FLAS through their home institutions. Students from other universities may apply for FLAS through Florida International University (deadline January 1, 2021) the University of Wisconsin at Madison (deadline February) or the University of Pittsburgh.

Open to FIU or Non-FIU students with an FIU FLAS award only
For FIU Students, please contact Kevin Calcagno at for information on how to apply. 

FIU Summer 2023 FLAS application - Deadline January 1, 2023


Program Information

Kimberly Green Latin American and Caribbean Center
Kevin Calcagno, Academic Programs Coordinator, DM 353
T: 305-348-2894