Living in Mexico City
A DYNAMIC CULTURAL AND ECONOMIC HUB
Living, studying and working in Mexico offers an immersion experience incomparable with any other Spanish training program in the United States.
Mexico City is one of the oldest, largest and most cultural cities on earth. At 7,200 feet, Mexico City is blessed with one of the world’s best climates. Its government boasts that it has more museums than any other city on earth. With a young democracy, a bustling economy and an emerging ecological movement, Mexico City is a leading city in Latin America and positioned to be a global hub. It provides an extremely international, cosmopolitan backdrop for studying International Counseling.
Although the Mexican countryside still offers plenty of rustic charm, Mexico City provides a fascinating contrast of modern sophistication and poverty. The diversity of opportunity for counselors is astounding.
Despite the unforgiving foreign media, multiple credible sources including FBI crime statistics indicate that Mexico City is safer than many U.S. cities.
A CAMPUS IN THE MIDDLE OF IT ALL
The Alliant campus is highly urban half-acre property anchored by a converted century-old mansion, located in an extremely central area along one of Mexico City's largest business and government districts. Mexico City's centuries-old historic center is located just a few Metro stops from campus, and many of the most desirable residential neighborhoods are within 30 minutes of campus. The immersion experience is most rich when students seek a diverse personal life on and off campus.
STUDYING & WORKING IN MEXICO CITY
As an extremely urban campus, our International Counseling Psychology master’s program students benefit from the wealth of employment and training options near school. Many students find part-time jobs teaching or tutoring English for companies in the nearby corporate district. And since the program requires 500 hours of client-contact practicum hours, a significant part of the student experience involves working in clinics throughout the city.
Although the International Counseling Psychology program benefits from the presence of the California Clinic, all students complete a large percentage of their practicum hours in off-campus clinics – an exciting opportunity to work with a diverse range of populations and types of organizations, including schools, non-profits, and government agencies.
Student life tends to take place primarily off campus, although a highly active student body organization helps coordinate events. That said, immersion experiences are most rich when students seek a diverse personal life on and off campus. There are ample opportunities to participate in group excursions to popular areas outside of Mexico City.
SAFETY IN MEXICO
Mexico City is enormous; therefore the normal precautions that one would take in any large city are warranted. Basic tips include taking taxis only from established bases, avoiding flashing wealth, and becoming familiar with cultural differences in dress and appearance that can draw more attention to foreigners. For example, the use of shorts, short skirts, and baseball caps are almost certain indicators of tourists.
To hear student’s perspective on the issue of safety, please check out some of the views of past students: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O8iXJkUei8I
Homestays can be arranged for students, an economical option for your initial stay and one that favors immersion in Mexican culture and learning Spanish. Many students have found this to be a useful way to transition into the community and to allow time to select a longer-term housing option. However, most degree students eventually choose to rent apartments. There are many websites that list available apartments throughout the city, including Craigslist (http://mexicocity.en.craigslist.com.mx/) and Segundamano (http://www.segundamano.com.mx/).
Apartments in the neighborhoods near school cost U.S. $500 on the low end and upwards of U.S. $1,500 per month on the high end, with an average for adequate apartments being around U.S. $800. Many students reduce housing costs by sharing apartments. The Director of Admissions and Student Services can help facilitate roommate arrangements in advance.
HEALTH & MEDICAL CARE
Good quality medical care is available in Mexico. Alliant will provide you with phone numbers of recommended doctors and hospitals nearby. You should check with your insurance provider before coming to see if your insurance will cover you in Mexico. In any case, you will need to be prepared to cover expenses initially in cash or with a credit card. Medical care is generally much cheaper in Mexico than in the U.S.
Despite common perceptions, food- and water-borne infections are not universal. Small precautions can significantly reduce the risks related to enjoying Mexico's superb cuisine.