Details & Itinerary
Be inspired and inspire others. Contribute to the efforts of improving public health through clean water projects and educational outreach. Shadow physicians and healthcare professionals to gain practical field experience in an amazing place. Get your adrenaline pumping with a zipline canopy tour and immerse yourself with the Costa Rican people.
This is an academic and experiential program for aspiring pre-medicine students and future healthcare providers. Note that students do not have to have any previous medical or public health experience or study to attend the program. Required is a strong interest to develop knowledge and experience! On Day 1, students fly into the capital of San Jose, Costa Rica and drive via private bus to a lodge based on the outskirts of the city. We get started right away with initial education and orientation activities. Our first couple days in country are busy ones. We volunteer with our project partner which provides health services to immigrant families in Costa Rica, who don’t have access to the public health system. Volunteer activities include: assisting with kids’ health education classes, observing doctors in the clinic, and supporting with patient intake. Days 1-3 are in the province of Heredia and San Jose.
The group makes its way to a lodge located in the north central region of the country near La Fortuna and Arenal Volcano. While staying in a small eco-lodge, students work in a nearby, remote rural village deemed too small to receive healthcare aid from other organizations. Students work and collaborate with local community members and partners on several vital sanitation and hygiene projects that have been selected by the communities. Global Works participants work in collaboration with community members on the construction of health centers and other service projects. In addition to our service work, students take an active role in assisting medical professionals in rural health visitations. We also have time for a thrilling zip-line canopy tour with SKYTREK at Arenal volcano. Days 4-8 are in the province of Alajuela.
Following a productive week of intercultural exchange and clinical rotations, we head to our host community! After orientation and language practice, we meet our homestay families for the next five nights. Global Works students work alongside the volunteers on health education and rainforest ecology projects. A bonus is a visit and walk to a gorgeous waterfall! In addition, we enjoy our time in the community with soccer games, dance lessons, and other types of cultural exchange. Please see The Homestay Experience for more information on how we select our partner homestay families! Days 9-13 are in the province of Alajuela.
From San Carlos, we travel to the mountain town of Monteverde, known equally for it’s biodiversity in floral and fauna of the cloudforest. Home to many alternative health practitioners and artists, here we learn about reflexology, yoga, acupuncture, and plant therapy. In addition, we participate in a pottery making class a with a local women’s cooperative. Days 14-15 are in the province of Puntarenas.
The trip back to San Jose gives us time to share our memories before we fly home. We have a celebratory dinner and awards ceremony at an authentic, local restaurant to reflect upon our last three weeks together.
The Global Works chaperoned Group Flight departs from Houston (IAH) for this program. Airfare is not included the tuition. Please visit the Dates & Tuition for group flight costs and Flights & Travel Arrangements for more information.