• Costa Rica
2 - 4 weeks

Program Details

Program Type
Student Tour
Hotel Lodge
Age Min.
Age Max


Starting Price
Price Details
Includes all on the ground costs (lodging, food, activities, etc.). Does not include airfare.
What's Included
Accommodation Activities Meals Transportation
What's Not Included
Airfare Travel Insurance
Oct 11, 2023
Oct 30, 2023
25 travelers are looking at this program

About Program

During this pre-med/public health focus program, students participate in medical and public health focuses activities, shadow physicians and healthcare professionals at local clinics, as well as learn how to take blood pressure and other vital signs. Students also go on a river rafting adventure, get Wilderness First Aid and Mental Health First Aid certified, take an epic zip-line canopy tour, get surfing lessons

Community service is at the heart of every Global Works trip and, on this one, students earn 45-55 community service hours by working alongside professionals at an NGO, planning and implementation of public health campaigns, assisting in the construction of double pit latrines as well as work with local, community health educators in promoting their use and maintenance, and constructing community wash stations in public schools and communities, which reduce hygiene-related disease. No prior language study requirements are needed.

Video and Photos

Program Highlights

  • Shadow Doctors in Local Clinics
  • White Water Rafting Adventure
  • Get Certified in Wilderness First Aid and Mental Health First Aid
  • Pacific Coast Surf Lessons

Program Reviews

5.00 Rating
based on 10 reviews
  • 5 rating 100%
  • 4 rating 0%
  • 3 rating 0%
  • 2 rating 0%
  • 1 rating 0%
  • Growth 4.8
  • Support 4.8
  • Fun 4.8
  • Housing 4.8
  • Safety 4.9
  • Program Selection 5
  • Pre-departure Help 5
  • In-program Support 5
  • Impact on Student 5
  • Value 5
Showing 1 - 8 of 10 reviews
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Yes, I recommend this program

Costa Rica Pre-Med: Student Review

Yes, yes, yes! Would I recommend going on this experience? YES! Intro to pre-med through global works is something I never knew I needed to experience. Thanks to global works not only did I get more insight into the career of my dreams, but also get to experience a whole other country, and its culture at the same time. I am forever thankful for global works, the staff on my trip, and all the friends I met along the way. You helped make my summer truly amazing. Can’t wait to go back. PURA VIDAAA!

  • People are friendly
  • Great instructors
  • Amazing food
27 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Memories, skills, and friends that I will cherish for a lifetime

Before we had even left, I was making plans to return with a new (and now best) friend of mine. I think that says something about how much fun we had. I chose this trip because I love travelling and wanted to explore a new place, I have an interest in the medical field, and as an avid photographer I thought Costa Rica would be a wonderful place to use these skills. This trip satisfied all of my expectations, and even exceeded them. Our group leaders were extremely fun and approachable, and they led us through some cool places and informative programs. Whether you enjoy the forest, mountains, or the beach, this trip has something for everyone. I learned skills that I am glad to know; my group members and I are now CPR certified and Wilderness First Aid certified, and it was so much fun learning these skills in a hands-on way, through practicing with dummies and even ourselves (fake injuries, of course). I've never been on a trip that was created and arranged for me through an organization (and I was hesitant, at first), and I must say that my amazing experience convinced me to try it again! Thank you, Global Works, for this incredible adventure.

  • Wide array of first aid/premed skills were taught
  • Thoroughly explored many different parts of Costa Rica
  • Flexible and diverse scheduling made each day unique
  • Not enough time at the clinic
73 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Life-long Relationships

This trip to Costa Rica gave me so many things that I would’ve never had without taking the leap to go. I was scared and nervous, but the other kids on my trip were too. We all got along super well from the beginning, and I still talk to all of them almost every day. The people I met in Costa Rica as well changed my life. They gave me perspective and changed my point of view on a lot of things and I am forever grateful. Most importantly, I had boatloads of fun and would recommend for anyone possibly interested in a health care profession. The communities you visit are so welcoming and really want to build relationships with you. The leaders were great too. I still keep in contact with some of them as well. This program gave me so much and I will never forget it.

What was your funniest moment?
Staying in the hotels with all the girls and just laughing at everything.
115 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Truly a Highlight of my Life

This trip was truly a highlight of my life. This experience was beyond my wildest dreams. I never thought as a high school student that I would be allowed to shadow a doctor, nurse, secretary or even become a pharmacist! The hands on experiences and opportunities to learn were far from how I imagined they would go. I have also never felt so confident in my spanish speaking abilities. I took Spanish classes in school and an additional program during a lunch period a week since I was in second grade. I have also taken 3 high school level Spanish classes as a rising junior in high school. This was the first time in my life that I had such an immersive Spanish speaking presence, between the doctors, patients, staff of establishments we visited, and our host families. Still somehow my favorite part of the trip were the people on it with me. I have met the most outstanding, brilliant, hilarious, and kind hearted people possibly ever. I absolutely loved our group dynamic. I know I have made friends for life. Additionally, the group leaders were always ready to help us with whatever we needed. They were trustworthy, reliable, and so sweet. They each offered and taught us new ideas and viewpoints, and guided us through a different style of life than we are used to. They served not only as leaders, teachers, counselors, and first in line of contact, but as friends.

If you did this all over again, what's one thing you would change?
One thing I would change would be my attitude in the very beginning of camp. I had assumed that the trip would feel super long since the first day (17 days!!?). Yet after the fifth, I already knew it was going to feel too short. I wish that I had taken advantage of spending more time with the group in the beginning, because now it is unlikely that we will ever all meet at the same time and place again. We made amazing friendships, and it was so difficult to leave each other in the airport. So, if I had the chance to do it all again, I would be more aware of how special the opportunity is to meet new people and gotten more out of my shell when we all first landed in Houston.
117 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

wonderful hands on learning experience for students interested in global health

This is the third international service trip my high school daughter has done. She wanted to find a program that concentrated on health care and not just playing with kids in an orphanage. She found it! Incredible experiences working in clinics and working directly with patients. They had informative speakers and programs and gave the students a chance to see what they would experience if they continue in this field of work. The living conditions are not glamorous. The homestay consisted of buckets of water for a shower and an outhouse through the jungle. But what an experience. When my daughter returned, we asked if this changed her mind about pursuing global health. She said, yes it did. She knows she wants to continue in this field but wants to consider medical school because she wants to be the one providing the care, like the Doctors, Nurses and Dentist that she worked with on this trip. Invaluable experience that we would highly recommend.

126 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Be More Than A Tourist!

Anyone who wants to see the world outside of a five star hotel should consider coming on this trip. It will challenge you, inspire you, and teach you, all against the beautiful backdrop of Nicaragua. Whether you chose the Pre-Med/Public Health trip because you want to be a doctor, you wanted to experience the culture of South America, or you just needed some community service to graduate, there is something in this experience for you! Once you arrive in country, you will be surrounded by great group members who hail from across the country. You will be immersed in environments ranging from the bustling, dynamic, art-filled city to the agriculturally rich, home-y feeling mountains. And all along the way, you will encounter warm, friendly locals who are guaranteed to inspire you with their work ethics, resiliency, and genuine hospitality.
I came home from this Global Works trip with a new understanding and sensitivity to the issues facing Nicaragua and its neighbors today. I had a sense of confidence in my ability to adapt to new environments. And I felt more inspired to promote cultural appreciation and social change back in my U.S. community. I hope you'll feel the same. Then again, the only way to find out is to experience this wonderful country for yourself.

What would you improve about this program?
More group language activities would have been helpful. Since there is no Spanish language (or premed) requirement to go on this trip, not everyone has experience with Spanish. This can lead to some interaction difficulties at worksites and in homestays, and while this is not a major problem, some non-Spanish speakers will struggle to connect with locals and fully immerse themselves in environments outside the group.
117 people found this review helpful.
Read my full story
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Yes, I recommend this program

Extremely Eye Opening and Rewarding

This trip was a once in a life time opportunity. The reason I chose this program was because of the public health and medicine focus. We observed doctors in clinics and laboratories in the city, to installing water pipes in small communities, to water clean projects in the mountains. We also meet with NGOs to learn more about the history of Nicaragua. It was interesting to learn how different communities adapted to their situations. For example in places with low literacy rates, we helped paint murals that gave instructions on how to avoid getting Dengue Fever. It was the most rewarding to collaborate with communities and help them achieve their goals, as well as learn about their culture, different cuisines, and even dances. The staff, students, and locals I worked with were all immensely welcoming and hardworking.

What would you improve about this program?
Overall the program was great, but the only thing I would change would be maybe not having home stays at the beginning of the trip because then the group was divided and didn't really get to bond until the end.
109 people found this review helpful.
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Yes, I recommend this program

Global Works is the way to go!

This trip being a custom one was quite unique since it was based on gaining a medical experience and learning about the Nicaraguan culture at the same time. I've got to shadow some doctors and nurses at the local hospitals, get my hands dirty by digging a trench with a pick axe and shovel, and teach third graders about proper hygiene. I have learned to value the basic necessities I take advantage of back home, especially hot water. There were many first-time experiences for me, such as bargaining, zip-lining, and seeing bats. This was truly a wonderful experience for me.

What would you improve about this program?
There are no major things I would change, but maybe have some more variety in the food that we eat.
118 people found this review helpful.

Questions & Answers