Study Abroad

Nicaragua 2018

Course Title:

3 credits in VUSM 300 Serving the Common Good: Inter-professional Practice


VUSM 100 and VUSM 200 equivalent or with instructor's permission. Acceptance of Nicaragua study abroad program.

Spanish language is not required, but it would be useful.

Course Description:

In this course students will learn to collaborate effectively in inter-professional teams. Students will explore their discipline specific roles and scope of practice to understand and appreciate allied professions. The course will focus on knowledge and skills for effective communication, team dynamics, cultural competency and ethical decision-making. Together, students in allied fields including the professions of dietetics and nutrition, education, nursing, social work, psychology and education will learn about the realities of inter-professional work. Teaching strategies will include presentations, media and small group inter-professional activities. This Common Good Mission Seminar will include a spring break service-learning trip to Nicaragua.  Students will apply cultural and inter-professional practice to learn from and serve with local professionals in the Matagalpa region of Nicaragua. 

Travel Dates:

Spring Break 2018

Cities Visited:

Managua, Matagalpa, and San Ramon, Nicaragua

Program Leaders:

Julie Meyers and Irene Teneyck

Estimated Cost:

$2,850 - $3,200* per student

*Based on a realistic estimate of participants. Fees may change based on final enrollment and/or exchange rate fluctuation.

*Costs includes international airfare, accommodations, in-country transportation, cultural activities, international health insurance, and most meals.

*Cost does not include passport fees, vaccination fee's, personal spending money, some meals or trip/travel insurance.

**Financial aid may be able to be applied. Please contact the Study Abroad Office to learn more about how the program costs are applied.



Things to expect:

To be involved in a variety of service learning opportunities which may include medical settings, educational settings, and work in rural villages.
To be involved in a home stay experience, with a Nicaraguan family for half or more of the trip days and nights.
To learn about the Nicaraguan culture and be integrated into, and actively participate in, cultural activities; including but not limited to: jewelry making, cultural dance, cooking Nicaraguan foods, guided nature hikes, and traditional meals with host families. .
To return home with a new world view.

Multiple long days of activities and service work
Heat, bugs, mud, dust and dirt
Unfamiliar foods
Cold showers
Physical challenges such as hikes, walking long distances and much time on your feet, long drives over challenging roadways.

Lack of Internet and connectivity to the outside world and to home.

Amazing and unconditional love from the Nicaraguan people
A sense of “team” from having this experience together

Past Student Testimony:

"I learned so much about service work and the common good that I will be able to take with me for the rest of my life. This experience was valuable in many ways from simply meeting people, to being brought into their lives. Being so accepted by the Nicaraguan people shows you that it doesn't take a lot to be a good human." -Sarah, Nicaragua 2016

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