Weeks per Term
OIE Program Adviser
Languages of Instruction*
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 drive to the Atlantic Coast. Known asLa 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.
On the CIEE Service-Learning study abroad program students take the core course and capstone project at the Pontificia Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra (PUCMM). For the service component of the program, students are selected to work with one of our Santiago-based community partners: Acción Callejera, Arte a Mano, Centro de Atención Primaria Juan XXIII, Fundación Cuidado Infantil Dominicano (FCID), Niños Con Una Esperanza, and Oné Respe.
Housing and all meals are included in the program fee. Study abroad students live in Dominican private homes, and meals are eaten at the place of residence. Homestays are within walking distance of PUCMM. Students and their families are asked to speak only Spanish. Living in private homes is considered the best housing arrangement in Santiago because of its practicality (there is no student housing on campus) and positive contribution to the program’s objectives. CIEE works closely with host families to provide students the opportunity for integration into the Dominican community.
- Georgia Tech degree-seeking student.
- Good Academic Standing with a 3.0* (or higher) GPA at time of application
- Undergraduates must have completed at least two semesters of study at GT.
- At least 18 years of age by the program's departure date
- Be able to stay at the host university for the duration of their semester, INCLUDING through their exam period
- Be in Good Standing with the Office of Student Affairs and Housing
- All Non-U.S. Citizens are welcome to apply to participate in an exchange outside of their home country only. This rule applies to all who do not have a U.S. passport, including U.S. Permanent Residents.
- All study abroad participants are required to have a passport prior to any visa deadline dates, and any needed visas prior to departure date (Students are responsible for securing all required travel documents per the host country’s regulations prior to departure).
*Some host schools have stricter requirements such as higher GPA or more time in school before study abroad. (See Academic Info on your host school GT program page for any restrictions.)
Since 1947, CIEE has engaged in fulfilling its mission “to help people gain understanding, acquire knowledge, and develop skills for living in a globally interdependent and culturally diverse world.” The Service-Learning study abroad program serves this mission by providing a framework for students to fulfill their educational and personal goals while bridging relationships in the communities in which their learning takes place. In this sense, service-learning takes theory to practice to meet the challenges of social problems and closes the circle on an experiential learning cycle, while providing benefits to all those who are involved with the program.
The American Association for Higher Education (AAHE) defines service-learning as a method under which students learn and develop through thoughtfully organized service that is conducted in and meets the needs of a community and is coordinated with an institution of higher education and the community; helps foster civic responsibility; is integrated into and enhances the academic curriculum of the students enrolled; and includes structured time for students to reflect on the service experience.
The CIEE Service-Learning program is specifically designed upon the four core principles of service-learning, and each component of the program addresses one or more of the principles:
4) Public Dissemination
The design and nature of the Service-Learning program requires methodology that is more interactive, field-based, and reflective in theory compared to normal course pedagogies. Students are required to draw upon learned and new knowledge and reflect on these experiences through the analytic scope of research and observation methods drawn upon from the core course.
The language coursework is framed on the foundations of Spanish grammar, but focuses heavily on expanding everyday vocabulary and communication skills with regard to issues in community development and service work, enabling students to better communicate and understand the community in which they work.
The core courses and Directed Independent Research and Capstone Project draw on the expertise of the CIEE resident director and professors from the Department of Applied Linguistics at the Pontificia Universidad Católica Madre y Maestra (PUCMM). The internship component is coordinated through various non-profit and non-governmental organizations in the Santiago area.
Credit for courses taken as a part of exchange programs is received by transferring the credits back to Georgia Tech. For more information about this, click here. Here you will find the foreign credit approval form, the foreign credit approval form instructions, and a link to the registrar's Equivalency Table.
Students are normally graded on any combination of the following: quizzes, exams, papers, student presentations, and class participation much as in the U.S. Letter grades of A-F are given without pluses or minuses. Attendance is mandatory and incompletes are not accepted. Grades are given on a 10-point scale and are converted to the U.S. grading scale.
CREDIT TRANSFER SYSTEM
The Dominican Republic Service Learning Exchanges uses the following credit transfer system:
1 credits = 1 GT credit
Partner Transcript Grade = US Grade
90 - 100 = A
80 - 89 = B
70 - 79 = C
60 - 70 = D
0 - 59 = F
FN (Failure Due to Absences) = F
Program Costs (Estimated)
- For most exchange programs, participants must pay GT tuition, GT campus fees, and study abroad insurance to the GT Bursar for each GT semester they are abroad. No other expenses associated with this program are paid to GT; instead, these expenses are paid on site.
- Keep in mind the costs of books, health insurance, food, living expenses, and travel money, as well as pre-departure costs like your passport and visa.
- Following are cost estimates for one semester at the exchange program school that may help you prepare for your term(s) abroad. All costs are in USD.