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  • Locations: Cienfuegos, Cuba
  • Program Terms: Fall
  • Restrictions: Drexel applicants only
  • This program is currently not accepting applications.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Click here for a definition of this term Class Eligibility: Graduate Type of Program: Intensive Course Abroad
Program Description:
Program Overview | Academics | Program Calendar | Program Fee | More Information

Community Health and Environment in Cuba

Global Health in Cuba

Program Overview

This is a 3-credit, fall term Intensive Course Abroad (ICA) that seeks to explore global health concepts through the lens of Cuba. We will explore the impact of culture, community health, art, and environmental justice on Cuba's public health system. The travel to Cuba will take place just prior to the official start date of the fall term and is designed for most course instruction (75%) to take place during our time abroad, with supplementary pre- and post-travel instruction and assessment (25%).
The ICA will take place between September 14-23, 2023 and provide opportunities to engage with Cuban culture broadly, enabling students to refine their skills and competencies for effective global health cooperation, such as respect for other cultures, leadership, systems thinking, transdisciplinary problem-solving, communication, professional integrity, ethics and diplomacy, advocacy for change, intellectual curiosity, and cultural humility.

The course will also cover various region-specific health topics, including:

  • Arts for Social Justice
  • Nutrition and Foodways
  • Afro-Cuban Music & Culture
  • Maternal and Infant Health
  • Environment Health and Infectious Diseases
  • Traditional Medicine
  • Technology and Social Good
  • Food Security
  • LGBT+ and Social Acceptance 

These topics demonstrate the diversity of issues that can impact global health and emphasize the importance of understanding broader Cuba’s social and ecological determinants of health.


Graduate students will be registered for course CHP T580. Undergraduate students will be registered for PBHL T380. All students will be registered for 3 credits as part of their fall term course load. Undergraduate students must leave space for the 3 credits in their fall term credit load or will have to pay for exceeding the 20-credit maximum. The 3 credits for this program are not optional. 

Once you have opened an application, please contact Idris Robinson to schedule your faculty interview, which is part of the application process.

Joseph Amon, PhD, MSPH
Nancy Epstein, PhD 
Idris Robinson, MPH

Program Calendar

Arrival Date: September 14, 2023
Departure Date: September 23, 2023

Tentative Itinerary 2023:

Day 1: Arrivals
  • Arrive in Havana, Cuba
  • Exchange currency
  • Arrival dinner
Day 2: Welcome and Orientation
  • Meet team at Universidad de Cienfuegos, Conrado Benitez Campus
  • Understanding the history of Cuba, Cienfuegos, and Cuban figures
  • Discussion and walking tour
 Day 3: Community Project “Macabi” and its impact on the Environment
  • Local and Architectural History Discussion of Punta Gorda
  • Express a familiarity with the community projects, and its relationship to environmental conservation and community development
  • Identify a pharmacy in Cuba that specializes in “green” medicine
Day 4: Afro-Cuban and Popular Rhythms
  • Recognize the local flora and fauna of the region
  • Familiarization with the role of the System of Protected Areas of Cuba
  • Recognize the wide range of dance forms and music encompassed in Cuban culture
Day 5: Understand the local Polyclinic
  • Visit to a Community Doctor
  • Express a familiarity with the delivery of community and academic programming for people with varying abilities
Day 6: Overview of the Cuban Healthcare System
  • Presentation on Experience of Health Promotion Projects
  • Visit and Exchange with Director of Community Project “Las Minas”
Day 7: Community Efforts and Special Topics
  • Discuss behavioral predictors of successful weight maintenance based on outcomes
  • Describe similarities and differences in community initiatives to reduce obesity between Cuba and the United States.
  • Recognize the contributions of grandparent circles to community health
Day 8: Health and the Natural Environment
  • Demonstrate knowledge about environmental issues in Cuba
  • Understand the efforts to revitalize endemic species to support urban agriculture
Day 9: Closing and Conclusions
  • Presentation of Drexel Student Final Projects
  • Final Cultural Activity with University of Cienfuegos
Day 10: Departures

Program Fee - $2760 

In addition to the program fee, there will be a $25 application fee.

Due 05/1/2023 - $500 Advance Payment + $25 Application Fee
Due 07/01/2023 - $2260 Final Payment
*All payments are non-refundable unless declined admission or program cancels for unforeseen reasons.

Included in Program Fee:

  • Round trip international airfare from Philadelphia to Havana 
  • Cuban Visa
  • Health insurance while in Cuba
  • Accommodation in private homestays
  • Daily breakfast, lunch, and dinner
  • Welcome and Farewell meal
  • Airport pick up/drop off
  • Entry fees to all cultural, historic, and health site visits that are part of the program
  • Local transportation for all group events during program
  • On Call Emergency Assistance 
  • Quarantine Insurance

Not Included in Program Fee:

  • Tuition (per credit tuition will apply for graduate students)
  • Gratuities 
  • Additional meals and site seeing
  • Non-program related excursions

ICA Financial Aid: Students may request an Adjusted Cost of Attendance by submitting the ICA program fee and estimated out of pocket expenses listed above to Drexel Central (via askdrexel). Doing so could make students’ eligible for additional financial aid.  Students may also be eligible to apply for Drexel's ICA Scholarships.

More Information

The Drexel University Community Health and Environment (CHE) Immersion Program in Cuba from Drexel University Global Health on Vimeo.

Dates / Deadlines:

There are currently no active application cycles for this program.

This program is currently not accepting applications.