Quarter Abroad Mexico - On Site

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Latinx Health Internship Program in Oaxaca


Students will reside with families in Oaxaca, organized through Child Family Health International (CFHI-UCD Oaxaca Program) during the program dates. Accommodation includes 2 meals per day (breakfast and a late lunch) in addition to a single room. The student provides their own toiletries. The homestays will be centrally located to facilitate public transportation to classes and internship rotations.

While in Puerto Escondido students stay in shared rooms with local families and are provided with 2 meals per day. Air conditioning is not included in the price.

UC Davis reserves the right to change the accommodation location. Should this be necessary, we will arrange comparable lodging. Please note that elevators, air conditioners and other modern conveniences may not be available in all locations.


Students will be provided with two meals a day both in Oaxaca with their homestays and in Puerto Escondido.

Clinical Rotations

Students will participate in clinical rotations three times per week. Rotation sites include:

Primary Healthcare Centers

These clinics provide services including health education and promotion, diagnosis and treatment of disease, prenatal care and family planning, and primary care services including vaccinations and well child checkups. Participants will join physicians and local nurses to educate the local population about chronic conditions and infectious diseases. The facilities also offer vaccinations, pap smears, and cancer screenings.

General Government Hospital

This teaching hospital provides primary, secondary, and tertiary care at low cost. Students will rotate alongside Mexican medical students and residents in OB/GYN, pediatrics, surgery, and emergency wards. They will participate in morning rounds, general consults, and follow-up treatment.

Government Social Security Hospital

The facility provides secondary and tertiary care for state workers, including school teachers and their family members. Students will take part in rounds in surgery, OB/GYN, and emergency units. The facility has a strong surgical department and staffs are eager to mentor students.

Traditional Medicine Clinic

The clinic focuses on traditional medicine from eastern and western cultures. The main preceptor is a doctor trained in holistic medicine and nutrition. Students will learn how acupuncture, yoga, aromatherapy, and herbal remedies are used to treat common ailments.

Red Cross Clinic

The clinic handles urgent care cases like broken bones, lacerations, and accidents. More serious cases are stabilized and transferred to a nearby hospital. Students will shadow physicians and residents, and learn emergency room techniques and procedures during down times.

Excursions and Day Trips

Students will get the opportunity to travel to Puerto Escondido, a beach resort southwest of Oaxaca, for three weeks. While on excursion, students will attend various lectures, participate in clinical visits, learn about region-specific health concerns, and have evenings free for personal leisure. We anticipate several other excursions while the group is in Oaxaca.

Study Abroad Advisory of Student Risk

Participation in this UC Davis Study Abroad program requires travel to and extended living in a foreign location(s) abroad. UC Davis Study Abroad endeavors to reduce and mitigate risk wherever possible.  However, the environments and risks associated with living in these locations are substantially different than those found during a regular course of study at UC Davis. All participants must download and review the following information prior to departure. Any questions should be directed to the Program Coordinator.

Study Abroad General Risk Advisory

Program Specific Risk Advisories (PDF)

About Mexico

Mexico is the fifth-largest country in the Americas. With an estimated population of 111 million people it is the 11th most populous country in the world. It is comprised of 31 states and one federal district, which includes its capital, Mexico City. A majority of the population is of mixed Spanish and indigenous descent, while about 30% are of purely indigenous ancestry, and 10% are of European descent. Spanish is the official language and various Mayan dialects, Nahuatl, and other indigenous languages are also spoken.

Mexico borders the United States in the north, the Gulf of Mexico (including its arm, the Bay of Campeche) and the Caribbean Sea in the east, Belize and Guatemala in the southeast, and the Pacific Ocean in the south and west. Due to the diverse climatic conditions afforded by its geography and to a historic tradition of more than 3,000 years, Mexico has a wealth of natural and cultural resources. It boasts a long tradition in the arts, renowned cuisine, and culture, and it ranks fifth in the world and first in the Americas on the list of UNESCO World Heritage Sites with 31.

Currency: peso

Language Spoken: Spanish

Weather and Climate

The Tropic of Cancer effectively divides the country into temperate and tropical zones. Land north of the twenty-fourth parallel experiences cooler temperatures during the winter months. South of the twenty-fourth parallel, temperatures are fairly constant year round and vary solely as a function of elevation. This gives Mexico one of the world's most diverse weather systems. Weather in Oaxaca, Mexico.

Research Your Destination

Keeping in Touch

Since communication options can vary dramatically from country to country, Summer Abroad advises checking with the instructor or the Program Specific Guide for advice about what might be the best option for your particular program.

Calling the U.S. from Abroad

Many U.S.-based long distance phone companies provide special services that make it easy for you to phone home from abroad. Some provide toll-free access numbers that connect with an operator in the U.S. Some provide the means to charge long distance calls to a credit card or to a third party. Some provide better long distance rates. Others provide access to emergency, medical, legal, translation, and entertainment information. Students are encouraged to investigate these options before departure and to shop for the best services and rates.

Global Cell Phones

Most cell phone companies can sell you a special global cell phone with the option to add more minutes as needed. Also, most cell phone companies can unlock your cell phone for global use, but this requires a trip to a provider at your destination who will give you a SIM card and sell you minutes. Check with your cell phone provider for more information. Global cell phones are also available through travel agencies and online. Be sure to check the policies for both incoming and outgoing calls and text messages.

Cell Phone Rental

Some students choose to rent a cell phone that works at their destination. Some companies will ship the phone directly to the student in advance of the program dates—and include a packet for sending the phone back when they return. Interested students can locate service providers via the Internet.

Phone Cards

Many travel agencies and specific phone providers carry great options for phone cards. Check the rates available from your long distance provider. You can often buy phone cards on site.


Skype is a computer program that you can download for free that allows you to talk (for free) on the phone over the Internet with anyone else who has Skype. Go to www.skype.com to download the program. For an extra fee (as low as .02 cents/minute) you can enable your Skype to call land lines instead of just other computers. You will need a microphone and headset so that you can talk to the person on the other line. Skype also includes a chat option for instant messaging.

Instant Messaging Systems

Instant messaging systems are also a great free way to communicate with people back in the states. There are numerous options for messaging systems from AOL Instant Messenger to Yahoo Messenger. Just about every messaging program can be downloaded for free online.

Internet Access

Computer and internet access varies by program. Information for your site will be listed in your Program Specific Guide.

Internet access is offered in all the countries we go to, but the reliability of it differs from program to program. Internet can be accessed through internet cafes. Some programs also offer access through the dorms or on-campus computer labs. Internet cafes are very reasonably priced and often times have various instant messaging programs installed and headphones available to chat with loved ones. Relying on internet cafes may reduce worry of bringing your own laptop with you. You can upload pictures at most internet cafes, but remember due to the speed of some connections, it may be a better idea just to bring multiple memory cards to avoid spending your whole day on the computer.

Cultural Learning

Living in a new culture can be exhilarating, rewarding, and stimulating. It can also be frustrating. It is one thing to tour a country, but it is quite another to live and function according to different norms. It is important to be open toward a new culture, to try to discard stereotypes, and to learn as much as possible about the culture before departure. If you educate yourself about the country you will be visiting, you will better understand and appreciate your new surroundings!

Even with preparation it is likely that you will experience "culture shock." Recent studies show that there are distinct stages of culture shock. Some of these stages include: awareness of the host culture and preparation, initial euphoria and excitement, irritability phase during acclimation, gradual adjustment, and adaptation to culture. Upon return to the United States, many students face "reverse culture shock."

There are some things you can do to minimize your cultural adjustment. Keep a sense of humor! Treat yourself to an occasional U.S. indulgence like a favorite food, or purchase a U.S. magazine or newspaper. Avoid other Americans who are overly negative or who complain a lot. Keep healthy. Above all, don't be afraid to try new activities!

Resources for Further Study

Ethical Considerations in Study Abroad