Welcome to the About OLSA page
Our goal at OLSA is to equip post-high school / university students, professionals and travelers with outstanding Spanish skills and cultural awareness which will lead to improving their marketability to universities and future employers.
Spanish is the second most spoken native language in the world and is often considered the most beneficial second language for native English speakers. In addition, studies have shown that learning a second language stimulates memory, increases attention span, increases ability to multi-task, increases decision-making ability, increases SAT and ACT scores on math, reading comprehension, and vocabulary; and makes a person more attractive to employers.
OLSA is located near the heart of Medellín between El Estadio and La Floresta Metro stations, next to the city’s main sporting venue, Estadio Atanacio Girardot. We are easily accessible by foot from either metro station, or by city bus via La Avenida Colombia. We are centrally located to hostels/hotels, shopping, athletic training facilities, public and private schools and universities, transportation, and the famous Calle 70. See the Our Campus for more details.
At OLSA, we have three immersion programs which can be taken as a whole, or taken a-la-carte. So, whether you only have a week, or two, or you are looking for a semester program, we have you covered. See the Spanish Programs tab for more information
Accredited Spanish University Program
The Accredited Spanish University program comes in two parts:
- Certified Spanish University Course (Grammar)
- Spanish Daily Classes (Practice)
Certified Spanish University Courses – Grammar Courses – Included in SUP
We use the United States university-accredited Vistas and Facetas systems as the foundation of our SUP grammar classes. These two systems are used by more than 100 universities across the United States for Spanish 101, 102, 201 and 202. We have adapted these systems for an international Spanish certification through the Common European Framework for levels A1, A2, B1 and B2. Our SUP grammar classes meet four days per week for two hours each day. With OLSA, students can complete all four levels in as little as one year! This gives our students the opportunity to complete two years of university Spanish in just one year abroad at OLSA.
Spanish Daily – Conversational Spanish – Included in SUP*
Spanish Daily is a Spanish conversation curriculum designed to help foreign students, expats and/or full-time students learn, understand and speak colloquial Spanish. This program, written, recorded and taught by native Spanish speakers, uses themed conversations, stories, videos and other multimedia to present the living Spanish language outside of the grammatical restrictions of a textbook. This is the actual Spanish students will hear and use on the street, in the market, making new friends and participating in events with native Spanish speakers.
*Although the Spanish Daily classes are an integral part of OLSA´s Accredited Spanish University courses, it may also be taken individually on a weekly/monthly basis to improve Spanish fluidity. See Spanish Daily Classes under the Spanish Programs tab above for more information.
Spanish Immersion Weeks
The Cultural Immersion Weeks packages are an excellent way to really get immersed in the Latin culture in a short amount of time. These highly interactive hands-on packages are a great fit for Spring / Summer / Winter / Fall breaks, short-term travelers and backpackers. Teachers can use these Cultural Immersion Weeks packages for 18 professional development hours, or 1.8 academic credits for each week!
Improve your Spanish fluency through guided conversational Spanish practice, develop a deeper appreciation for the Latin culture through Salsa lessons and weekly excursions, socialize and make new international friends and return home with great photos and stories and maybe with some professional development hours, to boot!
This package runs on a continuous eight-week cycle with a different mid-week excursion each week. These 5-day packages include:
- 4 days of Spanish Daily classes
- 4 days of Salsa dance classes
- 1 Excursion day-trip – Wednesday
- 1 OLSA language exchange – Wednesday
- 1 entrance to the OLSA Pre-Party – Saturday
For a complete description of the excursions, see the Weekly Excursions tab above.
Additional programs available through OLSA:
- Accredited Spanish University Program – Certified Grammar Courses
- Spanish Daily Classes – Conversational Classes
- Spanish Immersion Weeks – includes weekly excursions
- Salsa Dance Classes classes – and other Latin rhythms
- Meal (breakfast, lunch, dinner) program – we have our own restaurant
- Lodging – we work closely with apartment/house owners and hostels
- Free weekly language exchange – different theme each week; see our Facebook page
- Saturday Pre-Party social – meet some local friends before you go out on Saturday night
We want to thank you for considering OLSA as your Spanish language immersion school! Your future really is important to us and we are excited to share this experience with you. So, invest in your future. Improve your marketability. Join us at OLSA!