Global Health Community Engaged Learning in Zambia

Zambia, Livingstone

On-Campus: CD Mod; March 15-May 5, 2023, Day & Time TBD
Off-Campus:  May 16-June 5, 2023 

Program Highlights

  • Participate in Global Health community engaged learning in the charming city of Livingstone, Zambia, located right next to beautiful Victoria Falls.
  • Gain a well-rounded view of the health system in Zambia, participate in home visits with healthcare workers and help contribute to initiatives designed to improve community health outcomes.
  • Gain experience facilitating workshops with community members on a range of themes including health and nutrition, gender-specific health issues, HIV/AIDS and sports and well-being.
  • Course open to all students regardless of your major.
  • Fulfills electives for Sociology and Global Health as well as the following Integrations Curriculum Designations: GLO, EXP, Justice Encounter, Social World (SW) Way of Thinking.

Explore complete Global Health in Zambia Embedded Program details on the CSBSJU-Global Portal.

Course & Program Information

Course Name: Global Health Community Engaged Learning in Zambia

Course Number: SOCI 337U

Credit Number: 4 credits

Integrations Curriculum designation: Global (GL) & Experiential Engagement (EX), Social World (SW) with Thematic Encounter – Justice

Prerequisite: none

Course Description:

Zambia is a vibrant, complex, multicultural country. Compared to many sub-Saharan African countries, Zambia has a high literacy rate, good gender equality indices and robust mining and tourism industries. Yet, high rates of poverty and inequality exist in Zambia, with almost a 60% of Zambians living in poverty. Not surprisingly, many health and healthcare delivery challenges exist, including a shortage of healthcare workers, high rates of infectious diseases such as HIV/AIDS, malaria and TB, and a growing burden of noncommunicable diseases. In this course we tackle the complex dynamics driving global health challenges in Zambia. On-campus class sessions will cover the cultural, linguistic, political economic and historical context of Zambia’s health and healthcare challenges and we will consider effective ways to engage in service learning around health issues. Students will contribute independent research about the country’s history and context and will prepare rigorously for the projects they will embark on when in-country. We will then spend 21 days in Livingstone, Zambia participating in health-focused service-learning projects in home-based care and helping to organization workshops on various topics related to health and wellness. The course will culminate in a Travel Vlog project made by students while in Zambia.

Program Information:

We will be working with Kaya, a responsible travel organization that specializes in providing meaningful travel experiences for students. Their mission is to cultivate educated, compassionate global citizens through responsible travel. Kaya’s community-led healthcare initiatives provide students with the opportunity to gain a well-rounded view of the health system in Zambia and help contribute to initiatives designed to improve community health outcomes. Students will stay in a volunteer house, and in addition to working during the weekdays on the service learning projects, students will have the opportunity to visit several important natural and cultural sites including Victoria Falls, Bicycle Village Tour, Sunset Cruise, National Park Safari and a Market Visit.  Explore the tentative itinerary here.

Program Cost & Financial Considerations

Students on an embedded program will pay an education program fee in addition to the cost of attendance for the semester. All program fee information is found in the “Financing your Experience-Short-term” brochure found on the Financing Study Abroad  website.   You will also find  more information about what is included and not included in the program fee on theCSBSJU-Global Portal.  

Students should plan early for a successful study abroad experience. Financial aid and scholarships may be available to help with program costs, but must be searched out well in advance.   


Students will stay in shared accommodations in a volunteer house. The cost of the program will include most meals as well as transportation to and from the project sites and admission to many of the tourist attractions. 

Program Director Information

The program director and instructor for this course is Dr. Ellen Block. Ellen is an Associate Professor of Anthropology in the Sociology Department and is one of the advising faculty for the Global Health minor. She received her Ph.D from the University of Michigan in 2012. Her work centers on the intersections of health, kinship and care in sub-Saharan Africa. She has been to southern Africa many times, has lived in rural Lesotho for over two years with her husband and children, and has visited many countries in the region. 

Contact: [email protected]