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Mexico: Merida

Merida Quick Facts

Language of Instruction

Fields of Study
Students may choose classes from a variety of faculties, in subjects including history, literature, linguistics, anthropology, archaeology, art, biology, colonial studies, economics, indigenous studies, international relations, Latin American studies, Mexican studies and psychology. 

Host Institution
Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán (UADY)
Institute for Study Abroad - Butler University (IFSA-Butler)


Program Dates
Fall semester: late August to mid-December
Spring semester:  early January to late May

Faculty Liaison
Miguel Tinker Salas


The capital of the state of Yucatán, Mérida is a colonial city on the Gulf side of the Yucatán Peninsula. The city is rather compact, making it easy to explore the squares and markets, and cultural offerings include theatre, art galleries, museums, nightlife, and free evening concerts. Despite Mérida’s colonial Spanish architecture, everyday life reflects a strong Mayan influence. One can visit many archaeological sites, including some of the most important Mayan temples and ruins. Mérida offers thousands of years’ worth of history to explore.

IFSA-Butler’s program in Mérida offers students the opportunity to study at the Universidad Autónoma de Yucatán (UADY) and to take courses with host university students. The program includes a ten-day on-site orientation; excursions to ecotourism destinations, archaeological sites, and colonial cities; and an advanced Spanish course. As all courses are taught in Spanish, IFSA-Butler provides language tutors for ongoing support throughout the semester. The program also offers volunteer opportunities in conjunction with UADY.

Academic Program

 All students are required to take one advanced Spanish course developed especially for IFSA-Butler students (0.75 Pomona credits). Placement in this course will be determined by an oral and written exam upon arrival in Mexico. IFSA-Butler also offers one program course each semester. While the program course is not required, Pomona highly recommends students take the Mayan content course offered in the spring. Students take the remainder of their courses at the university. The program must total 15 semester credits (equal to 4.0 Pomona credits). A full course load is usually equivalent to five classes.

There is no P/NC option on this program.

Living Arrangements


Number of Students

IFSA-Butler enrolls approximately 20 - 25 students, selected from a national pool. Total university enrollment is 15,000.


  • Completion of advanced Spanish (Spanish 44), or the equivalent.
  • 9.0 GPA overall.

While the program requires four semesters of college-level Spanish or the equivalent, Pomona strongly recommends five semesters.

Internet Link

Study Abroad