A transformational experience that there are no words to describe – you need to live it for yourself -Rebecca H.


To create unique cultural experiences which promote a better understanding of our world.


We are dedicated to the continuous cultivation of autonomous, socially adapted, and inter-culturally aware global citizens who are fully capable of perpetuating the cycle of cross-cultural exchange and understanding.

The Yucatan Immersion program was by far the most enjoyable and life changing experience in my college career –Stuart W.

Who We Are

PICY is a group of people passionate about INTERCULTURAL EXCHANGE. Since 1999 we have specialized in designing and facilitating cultural immersion programs in Yucatán, México. Through learning Spanish as a foreign language, we help our students to value cultural diversity in order to give them the capacity to interact and adapt in any part of the world.

Our methodology in language acquisition has been perfected over fifteen years and is recognized by the Ministry of Education of Spain.

The three pillars of our work here at PICY are:

Innovative methodology for language acquisition based 100% in cultural immersion.

Support services for each student during their entire stay in Yucatán.

Flexible programs to meet the needs of each individual or institution.

Our Philosophy

  • The World
  • People
  • Language

We are all simply the products of different social histories and cultural values. At PICY, we believe that despite these differences, we share the same struggles and needs; they are simply viewed from different angles and in different proportions.

We believe that learning is a mutual process, an exchange and connection between people from different cultural origins. This generates invaluable experiences for not only our participants but for us as well.

Language cannot be separated from the real-life cultural context in which it is used. When developed in a practical context, it is a key that opens a door to a world waiting to be discovered.

PICY's immersion program allowed me to make the jump to become a Spanish-language speaker and changed me as a person. –Lilian B.


PICY’s method of teaching and learning is 100% focused on interacting in real contexts tailored to the interests of each student. At PICY, we believe that anyone can learn a language, and we strive to make the process of learning Spanish a natural and enjoyable one.

  • Authentic
  • Integrated
  • Intensive

The first step is getting to know the student. Through the diagnostic process, we want to know not only the level of Spanish but also other important aspects of who the student is in order to best determine the strategies for designing a program specific to each person or institution. In this way, each experience is uniquely one of a kind.

For fifteen years, we have understood that learning and practicing a language cannot be separated from the lived experiences of real cultural contexts. Because of this, our programs present life and language simultaneously. We employ a natural process in which fluency in the language is acquired in the same way we learn our first language as children: exposure and repetition leading to comprehension and creation.

Our method is intensive because it implements a series of strategies which serve to ignite and facilitate the process of language acquisition. Spanish and Anthropology classes, interaction with the host families, and complementary activities all help to build a strong cultural understanding in which the use of Spanish is extensive and ever-lasting.

I gained immense wisdom from the culture and the people that I met through PICY. An incredible and unique place to study! –Marissa G.

Our Team

Karla Evelyn Peña Zapata


Polly McAdam

Immersion Programs Coordinator

Lucero Gutiérrez Uicab

Executive Administrator

Fátima del Rosario Tec Pool

Archaeology, Speleology, Photography

Astrid Leonor Vargas Schimpf

Spanish Professor

Ismael May May

Anthropology, Linguistics, and Mayan interpretation

Michael Becker

Administration and GIS Engineering

Raúl Ernesto Manzanilla Haas

Social Anthropology, Speleology, Music

Emanuel Sanchez Euan

Graphic Design

Efraín Bacab Uitz

Folk dance and choreography

Gary Caballero Ríos

Latin and classical dance and choreography

María Novelo Pérez

Archaeology and Anthropology

María Rejón Santana

Development of Social Projects and Spanish Professor

Eliosa Yah Caamal

Expert in traditional Mayan lifestyle arts

Francisco Ic Gutiérrez

Liaison to rural communities and traditional life