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Spain-USA 2016 English Immersion (Dallas Area)

We had a great experience with Ana, our exchange student from Salamanca!

Chris Broussard - Coppell, Texas

Spain-USA 2016 Camp- English Immersion

It has been such a terrific experience being a host family. We've had great fun getting to know Paula and learn of her culture and family, while showing her a bit of what life is like in Dallas! She quickly became a wonderful extension of our family and we look forward to keeping in touch with her long after the program ends.


I wanted to give you an update of Philip's plans. He hopes to major in engineering at UT and minor in Spanish. If he doesn't get into engineering he put Spanish as his second major but I think in the long run it will be his minor. He LOVED IT!!!. I am happy for you to use my feedback as a testimonial and you are welcome to have anyone call me. I would love to share what a great experience I thought it was for Philip and his friends. I am sure Julie Grisham would feel the same way if you have some parents who want a girl mom's perspective. I am happy to talk to her for you if you would like.

I also want to tell you what a great experience Spain was for Philip and how much he learned. It was more than just Spanish ~ it was priceless. If you ever need a recommendation for the program from someone who is wondering whether to go or not I would love to help. You were a great sponsor. You were there for them but you also gave them just enough freedom to learn on their own. Philip said and I quote, "It was better than I ever expected!" He was not very excited about going and came back thinking it was the best thing he has ever experienced. He made so many friends from all over the world and still keeps in touch with them. He improved his Spanish-his Spanish 5 teacher laughs at Philip and Christopher in class as they argue with each other in Spanish. I think he is sure to spend a semester abroad in college after Spain. He even wrote one of his essays for college on the trip. Thank you for everything.

We (some of the parents and the students who participated in Spain 2011) were just talking about what a great experience the trip was and how it really did help them become more fluent in Spanish. We made everyone at the table jealous they didn't send their children. That was not our intent but it is just so obvious what a great program it is!!!

Stephanie Pinkston, Mother - Dallas Texas

I have had the opportunity to travel abroad with Alina Fernandez Maldonado twice (once in high school and once during college). I have traveled abroad with other groups, but no other experience can compare. Rather than systematically leading groups, forcing students to abide by strict schedules, or threatening students if they misbehave, Alina simply leads her students in the right direction. A trust and respect is shared between Alina and her students. She steers students to be inspired by travel and culture, as well as conquer their fears. I always knew that Alina was open not only to listen to anything I have to say, but she was there to mediate and help me through any struggles I faced. Rather than dealing with a problem for me, she encouraged me to fix my problems myself. When in a global setting, there are many obstacles a student may be faced with. Alina’s empathy and positive outlook are contagious. Alina teaches her students to enter situations unbiased and optimistic, and I know that in doing this, I gained new perspectives of both the world and of myself. Alina is both a leader and role model and offers a very unique sense of self-exploration with her study abroad programs.

Stephanie Halovanic - Ursuline Academy

My summer with was incredible. I have been on multiple teen travel programs before, but I have never learned to appreciate a culture like I did this summer. On my other programs, I felt like a tourist living the American life in a foreign country; however, Alina encouraged us to go out and truly live the life of a Spaniard: long siestas, late dinners, and social gatherings at Plaza Mayor. She allowed us the freedom to grow independence and utilize our Spanish skills in a safe environment. I, along with my Spanish, matured so much this summer and will hold these memories and experiences with me throughout my whole life. It was great having an adult chaperone who was readily available when we needed help but also balanced giving us a sense of freedom and responsibility. My friends and family know all too well (since I talk about it all the time) that my trip to Spain was the best, most eye opening experience of my life.

Hannah Orth - Dallas, Texas

I just wanted to say thank you so much for helping make my trip this summer possible! It was amazing and an unforgettable experience. I learned so much and it has already been paying off in my AP Spanish class! :)

Chris Reed - Newburgh, NY

Everything was perfect. Truly one of the greatest experiences of my life!

Justin Rasansky - Dallas, Texas

My trip to Salamanca, Spain with CONEXUS International the summer of 2010 was an incredible experience. I learned from some of the best teachers and improved my Spanish tremendously. I lived with a welcoming family, giving me the opportunity to experience life in an authentic Spanish household. The program gave us the freedom to explore the city on our own, a true immersive experience that few other programs could provide, and the excursions we took to Toledo and Segovia were great opportunities to appreciate the history and culture of other cities in Spain. After only two and a half weeks in Spain, I felt much more comfortable speaking Spanish, tasted delicious homemade paella, and was exposed to the beautiful Spanish culture. My trip to Spain was an amazing experience, made even better by the organization. I hope to travel with the same program again sometime in the future to continue my Spanish studies.

Aya Alame - Harvard University

So far I have done three immersion language programs with the organization. All of my immersion experiences have been enlightening and remarkable, opening a world of opportunities and inspiration. I am not the same person I was three years ago at age 12 when I went on my first program study abroad program with them. I have a much more open mind to people that are different than me and have much more confidence in myself and my instincts.

Haley Pangan - Highland Village, TX