3-Credit Study Abroad: Transformative Global Experiences

Now accepting applications for our popular short-term study abroad courses during Spring Break and Spring (May Abroad):

+ Poland: Invisible Groups in a New Poland (SASS 375C/575; 3 credits)

+ Guatemala: Child Welfare (SASS 375D/575; 3 credits)

+ The Netherlands: Social Justice & Violence Prevention (SASS 325/575; 3 credits)

+ The Netherlands: Mental Health Issues & Practice (SASS 375B/575; 3 credits)

+ South Africa: Social Justice and NGO Immersion (SASS 375L/575; 3 credits)

+ Attend our next Lunch & Learn information session about Guatemala on September 19 or 27

Open to all undergraduate and graduate students at Case Western Reserve University (any major), the Mandel School’s short-term study abroad programs travel to nearly every continent on earth and offers 3-credit courses that provide the experience of a lifetime. The trips are led by experienced faculty who have been traveling to these countries for nearly a decade. One-third of all CWRU short-term study abroad programs are offered by the Mandel School — reflecting our commitment to and enthusiasm for international study.

For more details or to apply, contact International Education Programs Director Dr. David B. Miller or Assistant Director Valerie Rambin.

Study abroad courses are open to all undergraduate and graduate students, regardless of major, as 3 credit-hour electives led by Mandel School faculty. These course credits are approved for Global or Cultural Diversity for Arts & Sciences majors, Social Science credit for Engineering majors, or the Social Work minor. All courses have mandatory pre- and post-trip seminars and assignments.

  • Study Abroad courses are multi-disciplinary and include in-depth study and immersion in countries in Europe, Central and South America, Africa, and Asia.
  • Students meet with community and neighborhood leaders, researchers, faculty, policy makers, social workers, and other practitioners and clients.
  • All programs have a minimum of two professionals traveling with the group and staying at the same accommodations.
  • Most program fees include: In-country transportation, lodging, facilitators, translation (where needed), international and regional staff to guide the trip, agency visits, guest lecturers, emergency medical insurance, and 1 to 3 meals per day (depending on the program).
  • Program fees do not include: Passport, vaccinations and visas (where needed), tips, course credit hours/tuition, the non-student and non-CWRU student professional development fee of $400.00, transportation to and from CWRU to the airport, non-program travel and meals not included by the program.
  • Scholarship available for MSSA and MNO students.


Course Topic


Program Fee

Ecuador SASS 375A / 575
Health, Human and Social Development
Winter Break 2017-18
Jan 1 – 14
Pre-Trip Seminars: Oct 14 & Nov 4
Post-Trip Seminar: Jan 27

Flight Included

SASS 375G / 575
Global Health and Social Development
Winter Break 2017-18
Jan 2 – 14
Pre-Trip Seminars: Oct 14 & Nov 4
Post-Trip Seminar: Jan 27
Flight Not Included
Guatemala SASS 375D / 575
Child Welfare in Guatemala
Spring Break 2018
Mar 9 – 18
Pre-Trip Seminars: Jan 27 & Feb 24
Post-Trip Seminar: April 7
Flight Included
Netherlands SASS 325 / 575
Social Justice: Health & Violence PreventionSASS 375B / 575
Mental Health Issues & Practice
Spring Break 2018
Mar 10 – 18
Pre-Trip Seminars: Jan 27 & Feb 24
Post-Trip Seminar: April 7
Flight Not Included
Poland SASS 375C / 575
Invisible Groups in a New Poland
Spring Break 2018
Mar 10 – 18
Pre-Trip Seminars: Jan 27 & Feb 24
Post-Trip Seminar: April 7
Flight Included
South Africa
(2018 & 2020)
SASS 375L / 575
Social Justice and NGO Immersion
Spring (May Abroad) 2018
May 22 – June 6
Pre-Trip Seminars: Feb 24 & April 7
Post-Trip Seminar: TBD
Flight Not Included
SASS 375H / 575
21st Century Ghana: Culture, Institutions, and Development in West Africa
Spring (May Abroad) 2019
May 2019
Flight Included
*Program fee subject to change
 Nicaragua  SASS 375J / 575
Child Welfare/Child Development in Nicaragua
 Summer 2018
June 2018
Pre-Trip Seminars: TBD
Post-Trip Seminar: TBD
Program fee TBD

Program fees are separate from tuition and include the following: in-country travel, most meals (depending on the program), lodging, agency visits, guest lecturers, most excursions and cultural events, emergency medical insurance, and international airfare unless noted otherwise above. Program fee will be billed with tuition from Bursar’s office and deposits will go through Office of International Affairs.

  • Contact International Education Programs Director Dr. David B. Miller or Assistant Director Valerie Rambin to schedule an advising meeting.
  • Contact Nancy Issa for Financial Aid eligibility details and procedures.
  • Apply at case.edu/studyabroad. Click on “program search.” Type SASS under “Program Name.” Select the country you are interested in from the drop-down menu. Once you click on the Search button, information on the trip will appear at the bottom of the page. For any questions about the application, please contact studyabroad@case.edu.
  • Pay the deposit to the Center for International Affairs. CWRU students: The rest of the program fee will be billed from the Bursar’s Office along with your tuition. Information on how to pay the deposit is on the application.
  • Registration for CWRU students: Start your registration on SIS after your application is accepted. All students outside of the Mandel School require permission to register. A registrar from another department will be sent a request to give you permission.
  • Registration for students from other universities: Students from other universities should register for an Independent Study (or the equivalent) at their own university. CWRU faculty will give the university instructor information on the student’s performance in the course. Students from other universities and interested professionals must pay the program fee plus an administrative fee of $400. This fee covers some administrative costs of the program that is ordinarily covered by tuition.
  • Order a passport. If you already have a passport, check that the expiration date has not passed. Renew your passport if it expires within 6 months after the return date. For more information, see the U.S. Department of State’s site for U.S. Passports & International Travel or contact the National Passport Information Center (1-877-487-2778) for more information.
  • Verify your medical insurance. Case Western Reserve does provide medical insurance (with restrictions) for all participants. In certain instances, including non-emergency medical situations, you may be required to pre-pay your medical care and/or related costs and then seek reimbursement afterward.
  • Update your vaccinations. Learn about vaccines prior to traveling. Please check the Center for Disease Control website unless you are traveling to the Netherlands or Poland, where vaccinations aren’t needed. Visit your family physician, health clinic, or the University Health Service (UHS) on the Case Western Reserve campus. UHS can provide students with any travel medicine and vaccines needed for trips. Students are only required to pay for vaccines or prescriptions that are filled at a pharmacy. To make an appointments, contact UHS (216-368-4539) or visit the UHS website.

University Statement on Safety and Security Precautions

CWRU and Office of Education Abroad Comment on Zika Virus

Check out photos from previous travel and study courses in Ecuador, Ghana, Guatemala, India, the Netherlands, and Poland.
Read a cross-cultural perspective from Mandel School faculty member and alumnus Patrick Boyle.
Hannah Bidigare-Curtis, Undergraduate Student (Major: Biology and Environmental Studies), on Health, Human and Social Development in Ecuador (2013)

I gained a ton of perspective on this trip. Learning about different ways of life and attitudes from the indigenous groups that we visited; actually seeing…pretty much everything we did on the trip just expanded my smaller-town view of the world. After experiences like these, what happened becomes so tightly intertwined with how I now view the world that I can hardly remember what it was like to not have gone on the trip.


Mary Wills, Graduate Student (Social Work MSSA), on Global Health and Social Development in India (2015)

I think that overall the experience was life changing. I learned more about myself in a two-week period than I have in 23 years, made some close friends and got closer to the ones that I already had. I also learned a lot from the hospital and social activist discussions and learned more about American culture in the process. I am still processing the entire trip. Every day I remember something different about India and how it has affected me.


Dylan Brown, Undergraduate Student (Major: Psychology) on Invisible Groups in a New Poland (2016)

When I first decided to go to Poland, I never anticipated it would be one of the most impactful experiences of my life. Experiencing such a different, yet wonderful culture helped me appreciate the incredible diversity we have in our world. My time in Poland expanded my worldview in a way that would have been impossible if I remained in America. The most surprising aspect of these visits, and indeed the entire trip, was the passion I saw in every social worker we encountered.


Sarah Jammal, Undergraduate Student (Major: Sociology), on Global Health and Social Development in India (2016-17)
Incredible India 2017
A related promotional video provided by SVBY:
Incredible India 2014


Teresa Mowen, Graduate Student (Social Work MSSA/CNM) on Child Welfare in Guatemala (2011)

Individual growth is a component of education, and growth certainly occurs when one travels to an area outside of their own familiarity. With each opportunity to travel abroad comes a different growth opportunity. Guatemala was an amazing experience, to say the least; the people, the food, the deep rich culture and the atrocities which fill their history. Meeting the people and seeing with my own eyes the obvious disparity between rich and poor strengthened my resolve to learn more about other areas of the world and ways in which we can provide comfort, equality and empowerment to vulnerable populations at home and abroad.


Ben Ratner, Undergraduate Student (Major: Computer Science) on The Netherlands Social Justice: Health and Violence Prevention (2016)

I learned a lot and really got new insight on American social customs and practices. You always hear about the Netherlands being very different, but seeing it firsthand and learning from real citizens was a phenomenal experience. I’m so grateful to have been able to go.


Emilie Wyszynski, Graduate Student (Social Work MSSA/MNO) on The Netherlands Mental Health Issues and Practice (2016)

Study abroad gave me a spark I’ve been missing all my life. Studying abroad was life changing to the core. I came home a completely different person.