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Programs : Brochure

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  • Locations: Sosua, Dominican Republic
  • Program Terms: Summer, Winter (Fall Reg.)
  • Eligibility: Please see below for requirements.
  • Budget Sheets:: Spring Break
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Winter (Fall Reg.) 2017 09/17/2017 ** Rolling Admission 12/10/2017 12/20/2017

** Indicates rolling admission application process. Applicants will be immediately notified of acceptance into this program and be able to complete post-decision materials prior to the term's application deadline.
Fact Sheet:
Eligibility Requirements:
Honors College Student
Level of Study:
Open to:
USF Students Only
Credit Offered:
USF Credit
Program Advisor:
Nancy Di Bella
Sponsoring College:
Honors College
Program Primary Subject:
Health Sciences
Program Description:

Program Overview

Program Dates: December 10-20, 2017

Why spend your winter break surfing or going to a theme park? Try engaging in volunteer initiatives. The Honors College is offering a unique Service Break opportunity for students who are interested in careers in healthcare and/or public health. Students will spend time with physicians, medical practitioners, and community developers. Students will have the opportunity to hear from guest faculty regarding the status of public health and the healthcare system of the Dominican Republic. Students will be involved with field experience, as well as gain the ability to compare and contrast medical care in the country, as they visit Public Hospitals and Private Health Clinics. 

Students will attend healthcare lectures by Dr. Reginald Kerolle, founder of the Kerolle Initiative for Community Health. Additionally, students will earn contact hours during the service-based projects, but total contact hours are TBD. Students will also have the opportunity to shadow and observe in a variety of clinical settings.

DR Clinic

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Santiago de los Caballeros, the second largest city in the Dominican Republic, is surrounded by mountains in the lush valley of the Cibao region. Places of historical, cultural, and ecological interest are nearby, and it is just a little over an hour’s drive to the Atlantic Coast. Known as La Ciudad Corazón (City of the Heart), Santiago is the commercial and cultural center of the fertile Cibao Valley region, housing over 100 industrial free trade zone factories, the León Jimenez Cultural Center and cigar factory, and the commercial street of Calle del Sol. Although it is a growing city with a population exceeding 800,000, Santiago retains many features of a small town.


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Host Institution

Kerolle Initiative for Community Health  is a not-for-profit philanthropic organization founded by doctor Reginald Kerolle in November 2007 with the goal of providing free health services, prevention and education programs to people who live in remote rural communities both in Haiti and Dominican Republic.This is an organization open to everyone who wants to make a difference in people's lives with no regards to religions, politics and gender. They believe that humankind is a giant family and serving people unconditionally is what gives sense to our lives.

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Academic Program and Course Information

Students must be in the Honors College to participate in this volunteer service experience. Please note that this ten-day, winter break program does not carry any class credit. While there are no class meetings, selected participants will be required to attend three pre-departure meetings in addition to the general pre-departure orientation through Education Abroad. The service break trip entails a health and community development focus. The program includes: field clinics, ability to gain awareness on public health and the medical systems in the Dominican Republic, opportunity to gain basic practical medical skills, and ability to observe historical and cultural points of interest that delineate the country’s historical timeline.

A Post-program meeting will take place in January after students return to campus for the Spring semester. Students may also participate in Honors College International Day, Study Abroad fairs, or other international travel/cultural events at USF. 

In addition to language immersion through home-stays, students will attend Spanish class as a part of the program itinerary.

This volunteer, community service trip will allow students to earn hours for both community service and shadowing. 

Opportunities for future research will be investigated during the trip. Students with ideas for and interest in future research should talk to Dr. Davidson.

DR Children

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Lindy Davidson is a full-time visiting faculty member in the Honors College at USF. She studies health communication, particularly as it pertains to children, end-of-life and disability. Dr. Davidson has traveled throughout Latin America as a participant and leader in service projects in Mexico, Ecuador, Brazil, Venezuela, and Nicaragua. She is proficient in Spanish and has experience visiting hospitals and health clinics serving poor populations in Latin America. 

Dr. Lindy Davidson
Faculty Leader
Honors College

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Program Costs

Program Cost: TBD 


  • Accompaniment and on-site program direction by USF Advisor/Program Coordinator
  • International airfare Tampa-Puerto Plata-Santiago de los Caballeros, Dominican Republic-Tampa
  • Double occupancy accommodations 
  • All meals
  • All program related, in-country transportation
  • Site visits to the Kerolle Initiative, hospital visits, field clinic, Puerto Plata tour, community health event, environmental health event
  • Health Insurance

Not Included:

  • Personal spending (snacks, water, and other meals similar to cost in America)
  • Passport or visa fee


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Living Arrangements

Students stay with a Dominican host family in Sosua, which offers a great opportunity to practice the Spanish language while learning about the Dominican culture. There is also the possibility to visit other cities in the area.

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Who Can Participate?

This program is hosted by the Honors College and open to any Honors College student. Students who would like to pursue a career in healthcare and/or public health, is also a preference. Some Spanish speaking ability is suggested.

DR USF Students

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How and When to Pay

Please click here for further details regarding payment.

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Getting There

Tickets from Tampa International Airport to Santiago de los Caballeros in the Dominican Republic have been arranged by the Education Abroad Office on behalf of the Honors College. International Airfare is included in the program cost. 

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Medical Insurance and Travel Documentation

USF provides program participants with sickness/accident and emergency medical evacuation insurance valid for the dates of the program. Those who will travel independently, either in advance of the program or after the program ends, must ensure that they have insurance coverage valid outside the U.S.

Please click here for more detailed information.

DR Presentation

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Safety & Health

Participant's safety and well-being are paramount to USF. Please click here for detailed safety and health information given in our Pre-Departure Guide before you travel. Also, don't forget to read up on country-specific information on the U.S. Department of State and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention websites.

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Financial Aid and Scholarship Funding

Many funding opportunities are available to USF students who are planning to study abroad. Please see our funding page for further details.

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Special Terms

Students should carefully review the Education Abroad Participant Contract, included in the Education Abroad application process. It describes students' responsibilities with regard to participation, and includes information on insurance, and cancellation and refund policies. Students will be asked to electronically sign this document. To view this document before applying, please click here.

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Contacts for More Information

With questions regarding the program's academics:

Dr. Lindy Davidson
Faculty leader

Questions regarding education abroad application process, and payments:

Nancy Di Bella
USF Education Abroad
Phone: (813)-974-1969

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