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Who can participate in the study abroad program in Haiti?
The FHU Abroad program in Haiti is open to students in the Nursing Program who have successfully completed NSG215 Health Assessment and NSG215L Health Assessment Lab, or to students in the College of Business. To apply for or participate in any FHU Abroad program, students must have a minimum GPA of 2.5, and they must have completed two semesters of college coursework and achieved sophomore classification by the start of the study abroad program. Students whose GPA falls below 2.5 or who are on any kind of probation—academic, disciplinary, or otherwise—may not participate.
How do I apply?
To begin the application process, complete the online FHU Abroad application. Once your application has been received, the FHU Abroad Office will contact you about completing the application process, which includes additional paperwork and a $200 deposit..
Before they can officially be admitted into the study abroad program, students are required to pay a $200 deposit, which is refundable until the first day of class in the fall semester prior to going abroad.
When do I need to apply?
The application deadline for the 2016 Haiti program is August 31, 2015. All FHU Abroad programs can accommodate a limited number of participants. Once a program is full, later applicants will be placed on a waiting list. All applicants who are placed on the waiting list and do not make the program will have their deposits refunded.
When will the program take place?
The Haiti program will take place during the January two-week short course. During the first week, participants will attend class sessions on campus at FHU and learn about the history, culture, and language of Haiti, as well as Haiti's economy (BUS 399) or diseases and medical conditions common to Haiti (NSG 299A/399A). Travel to Haiti will take place during the second week of the January short course, January 9-15. All course requirements will be completed by the end of mid-term exams during the spring semester.
How much does the program cost?
The cost of participating in the Haiti program is currently $2,200 and includes round-trip airfare, ground transportation, lodging in Haiti, breakfast and dinner while in Haiti, and travel insurance. The program charge does not include the cost of room and board while on campus during the first week of the program. Tuition is included in the spring semester Comprehensive Charge.
Will there be any other expenses?
In addition to any meals eaten in the airport during travel to/from Haiti, each participant will be required to pay a customs fee in Haiti—typically $10 in cash. Each traveler should also pack snacks for lunch each day (e.g. peanut butter crackers, mixed nuts, beef jerky, hard candies). There will be no opportunities to visit grocery markets or convenience stores in Haiti.
Can I use financial aid to pay for the program?
The first ten Nursing students and the first ten Business students to apply for the program and pay the deposit will be eligible for a $500 scholarship. The scholarship will be awarded in the spring semester upon successfully passing the course associated with the program.
Since students receive academic credit as part of this study abroad experience, they are eligible to use financial assistance to cover travel costs. However, all participants will be required to adhere to a payment schedule during the fall semester, prior to when any financial aid associated with this study abroad program will be available (in January). Contact the Office of Student Financial Services regarding questions or information about financial aid.
When will I make payments for the program?
Participants will be required to adhere to a payment schedule, with deposits scheduled throughout the fall semester before the program begins.
Scheduled deposits for the January 2016 program:
How can I make the payments?
All payments may be paid by cash, check, or credit card at the Office of Business Services in Loyd Auditorium. Make checks payable to FHU. To pay with a credit card via phone, contact the Office of Business Services at 731-989-6347.
What are the living arrangements in Haiti?
Students and faculty will stay at the gated LiveBeyond compound in Thomazeau. Full dormitory-style lodging services will be provided, along with breakfast and dinner each day. Wireless internet connectivity is available but not always reliable.
Will any other travel be involved?
Students will primarily be confined to the LiveBeyond compound during their time in Haiti, with the possible exception of some house calls in the Thomazeau area.
Should I take any additional money to Haiti?
Participants should bring a small amount of cash with them for incidental expenses, including a customs fee (around $10). Participants may also wish to carry a bank or credit card for emergency expenses and/or meals while traveling to/from Haiti.
Is it safe to travel to Haiti?
In its travel warning for Haiti, the U.S. Department of State notes that “hundreds of thousands of U.S. citizens safely visit Haiti each year.” However, the travel warning also cautions U.S. citizens about “the lack of adequate emergency medical facilities and the security environment in Haiti.” While this highlights the need in Haiti for the kind of medical service work that this program aims to provide, the warning also points to the many risks involved in a trip to Haiti. While the safety of program participants can never be guaranteed on any FHU Abroad program, students who visit Haiti may encounter increased health and security hazards in the form of natural disasters, exposure to disease, and more prevalent crime.
How does the FHU Abroad Office address safety concerns?
The health and safety of students traveling overseas is always very important to FHU. Every effort is made to keep our students abroad safe and secure. The FHU Abroad Office will thoroughly review best practices in health and safety with participants, specifically practices related to travel in Haiti—such as personal and environmental methods to prevent mosquito bites and other forms of exposure to disease. The travel insurance provided to all FHU Abroad participants includes emergency evacuation coverage in the event of a natural disaster or catastrophe, as well as security and political evacuation coverage. In the event of an emergency, the FHU Abroad Office will be in close contact with the faculty in Haiti as well as the students and family members involved.
The U.S. State Department works to alert U.S. citizens of any international travel risks, and all of our international program participants are encouraged to enroll in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). STEP is a free program provided by the State Department that allows international travelers to receive the latest travel updates and information about their location.
What happens if I get sick or injured while in Haiti?
Medical services in Haiti are severely limited. For serious illnesses or injuries, a participant may be evacuated to a medical facility in the United States. All participants will be provided with comprehensive travel insurance that covers medical expenses and emergency evacuation. The insurance policy also provides coverage for lost or stolen belongings and trip and baggage delays. A Description of Coverage for the insurance policy will be provided to each participant prior to departure.
Will the water be safe to drink?
LiveBeyond provides safe, filtered drinking water at their facility in Thomazeau. Tap and well water in Haiti is generally unsafe to drink. Students should bring two large water bottles to fill up each morning at the LiveBeyond facility.
What is pre-departure orientation?
Students who are accepted into an FHU Abroad program are required to participate in mandatory pre-departure orientation sessions before they depart. The orientation sessions cover topics like safety and student conduct, packing, and general information about the program. The orientation sessions are also a great opportunity to ask questions about the study abroad program.
When do I need to apply for a passport?
Applicants who do not already have a passport should begin the passport application process immediately. Valid passports are required in advance for all participants in order to make travel arrangements. Even if you already have a passport, check the expiration date! Haitian immigration requires international visitors to have a passport that is valid for six months after their scheduled return date. For information about how to apply for a passport, reference these instructions on the State Department website.
Will I need a visa?
If you are a U.S. citizen, you will not need to apply for a visa to visit Haiti. International students should consult the FHU Abroad Office to determine whether or not they will need to obtain a visa.
A customs form will be completed during the flight to Haiti; participants will be advised about how to complete this form prior to departure.
Do I need to get any immunizations or vaccinations before I study abroad?
In addition to being up to date on routine vaccinations and shots (e.g. MMR, polio, and flu), the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) also recommends that most travelers to Haiti be vaccinated against Hepatitis A and Typhoid and pack antimalarial medication.
LiveBeyond requires that participants be vaccinated against Hepatitis A and B, receive a tetanus booster, and carry malaria medications (Malarone is recommended). The tetanus booster must be a Td vaccine (which protects against both tetanus and diphtheria) given within the last two years; Td is usually given as a booster dose every 10 years but it can be given earlier. Proof of vaccination must be provided.
Students must also acquire and carry insect repellant (recommended 90% DEET), as mosquito borne illnesses are a concern in Haiti.
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