About the Program
The Department of Spanish and Portuguese Studies and Department of Biology invite you to participate in an experience that will expand your linguistic and cultural fluency through language study and health-related community service. Based on Spanish-language level, students will be placed in a variety of settings, including hospitals, medical clinics, pharmacies and/or with dentists. On this program, students will have the opportunity to improve their command of Spanish, compare health systems, learn about diseases, and explore the cultures of South America. UF in Cusco is organized in conjunction with International Studies Abroad (ISA).
About the Location
Situated high in the Andes Mountains in Southeastern Peru, Cusco stands tall as the ancient capital of the Inca Empire. The nearby Inca archaeological site of Machu Picchu has long been one of the most inspirational destinations for countless travelers. Spaniards first arrived to Peru in the 1530s, with conquistador Francisco Pizarro. Due to heavy Spanish influence for many decades, much of the architecture in present-day Cusco is a mix of Inca and Spanish design.
Today, Cusco is one of the must see destinations in South America, due to the preservation of its culture displayed in amazing archaeological sites, architecture, and colorful Peruvian dress. Many Cusqueños still wear traditional clothing like polleras (long, colorful skirts), play zampoñas (pan flutes), and raise llamas. In addition, the exquisite Andean cuisine provides Peruvians and foreigners alike with innovative dishes. Prepare yourself to be enamored with both culture and a constant breathtaking view of the Sacred Valley as you study abroad in Cusco.
Machu Picchu and Sacred Valley (2 nights): the “Lost City of the Incas,” Machu Picchu is perhaps the most familiar icon of the Inca World. The Incas started building the estate around 1400 AD but it was abandoned as an official site for the Inca rulers a century later at the time of the Spanish conquest. Located just below Machu Picchu, the Sacred Valley tour explores the fortress of Ollantaytambo and the ruins of Pisac. Students will visit a llama and alpaca petting zoo and wander through the impressive Chincheros market. Located in the Urubamba Valley, the Sacred Valley provides wonderful views of the area.
Puno and Lake Titicaca (1 night): This excursion will take students to visit the “Capital folklórica del Perú” of Puno and its native residents, the Aymara. There they will encounter an abundance of beautiful crafts, fine fabrics in alpaca wool, and the archaeological remains of Pre-Hispanic cultures that harbor jewels of the architecture and colonial art of the Spanish conquest of the Paraguay and of the Mojos. From there they will continue on to Lake Titicaca, the highest navigable lake in the world, traveling beside the snowy mountain range of the Cordillera Real of Bolivia. They will spend a night with the Aymara families who live over floating artificial islands of Lake Titicaca, where many ancestral customs still exist.
Students will be able to experience the unique culture of Cusco by living with host families while on the program. In addition to having an opportunity to be immersed in the Spanish language, students will observe and experience aspects of the Peruvian lifestyle that are inaccessible to most visitors.
The Department of Spanish and Portuguese Studies
The Department of Biology
College of Liberal Arts and Sciences
Courses are taught by UF Faculty
SPN 3948: Spanish Service Learning
Taught in Spanish
Prerequisite: At least one course at SPN 2000 level or equivalent
ZOO 4956: Emerging Disease in the Americas
Taught in English
Prerequisite: BSC 2011 and 2011L or equivalent
Total Number of Credits Offered: 6
- open to all majors
- 2.5 GPA or higher
- students in good standing