Learn how communities around the world understand and strive for health and well-being.
What is unique about this program?
- Compare strategies of health and community across four radically different country contexts and at global and local scales, through case studies, ethnographic research, and visits with a diverse array of health practitioners and local activists.
- Explore the health realities all citizens face amid mounting challenges created by changing social, environmental, and economic forces.
- Strengthen your ability to understand, interpret, and compare the socio-cultural, ecological, economic, political, and biological factors that affect human health.
- Experience a rural retreat in Barro Do Turvo, Brazil, at the end of the semester.
What is unique about these locations?
USA: Washington, DC (2 weeks)
Hear from global health experts at international NGOs while observing firsthand how health inequities affect those living near the halls of world political power. Investigate some of the many social determinants of health, such as access to housing, transportation, and education, as well as gender, race, sexual orientation, disability, citizenship status, and income and examine how these inequities have led to some of the country’s worst health outcomes.
India: Delhi (4 weeks)
In Delhi, India’s capital, you will examine the mental and physical health challenges faced by farmers, sexual minorities, and the urban poor and consider how infectious diseases like HIV and malaria and a lack of access to clean water and food compound these challenges. You will examine how such a large and diverse nation addresses the double burden of its infectious disease epidemics and burgeoning chronic disease prevalence as its population both grows and ages and consider the roles public and private entities play in developing solutions.
South Africa: Cape Town (5 weeks)
South Africa, with its history of apartheid, brings into sharp focus the role of race in determining health. Homestays in the close-knit community Bo Kaap in Cape Town and in the rural township of Zwelethemba allow you to see firsthand how recent changes in political structure affect health and community life—in positive ways, through grassroots health activism, and in equally troubling ways, through persistent health disparities.
Brazil: São Paulo (5 weeks)
A center of rich and varied cultural life in Latin America for decades, Brazil has emerged as a major economy and model of participatory democracy. After a period of military dictatorship, Brazil’s new constitution, sanctioned in 1988, established health as a fundamental social right and called for access to social and medical care services for all citizens without discrimination on the basis of skin color, income, social status, or gender. In São Paulo, the largest city in the Americas and a cultural melting pot, you will study the reality of healthcare in Brazil today.
How do I choose among programs?
- See the Office of Global Learning’s “Selecting a Program” page for information on program types and considerations
- Use the search features on the Experience Cornell Opportunities page to filter for programs approved by your college, and by particular subject areas
- Go to the “Get Advice” page for information on drop-in advising hours, scheduling an advising appointment, returned student contacts, and college advisors for study abroad
- Find out about upcoming events, check out FAQs, and read stories from returned study abroad students
How do I apply?
Applying to study abroad is a two-step process. You may complete both steps simultaneously, but the Cornell approval process must be complete before your program advisor in the Office of Global Learning can submit any approval or nomination to the program.
- For Cornell Approval, click on the "Apply" button on this webpage. Applications are approved by the Office of Global Learning on a rolling basis until the application deadline listed on this page.
- For Program Admission, complete an external application directly on the program’s webpage, using the link in the “Snapshot” section. (Note: This deadline may be in advance of the general Cornell deadline for approval. Many programs fill by rolling admission.)