Projects Abroad

Projects Abroad

About

Projects Abroad is a global organization formed around the need for gap year programs abroad designed for students taking a break from studying. Since its inception, Projects Abroad has expanded to offer high school volunteer programs, and a vast variety of programs geared towards those taking a gap year or a career break. Visit the Projects Abroad website for more details on volunteer, teach, study and internship programs abroad.

Headquarters

80 Broad St Floor 32
New York, NY 10004
United States

Reviews

Default avatar
Myah
10/10

My experience with Projects Abroad was really incredible. I would highly recommend this program to anyone who is considering a career in medicine because it allowed me to figure out if I can handle it before I spent the thousands of dollars to attend a nursing program. It also gave me a taste of what I may want to specialize in because I experienced a variety of different environments inside the hospital. It is a very difficult process to view a surgery in the United States, so if you're interested in doing so, consider this alternative.

Essentially, each weekday morning, my roommate and I woke up, had breakfast, packed our lunches and supplies for the day, and waited to be picked up by one of the coordinators to be brought to one of the local hospitals. We would arrive, talk to the doctor who agreed to accept us for the day, and tell him or her where we wanted to go from the options given to us. In the two weeks I spent there, I was sent to pediatrics, nursing, the emergency room, and best of all, the operating room. I was able to watch three surgeries (as in, standing next to the patient, asking questions to the doctors), and it confirmed nursing as a career path for me.

If you're choosing between a medical camp at an American college or an opportunity abroad as I was, hands down choose the latter. It is not only a better experience since you are traveling the world, but it is unique and makes you stand out from the rest of the future med school applicants. This program in particular allows you to experience living with a host family, learning and practicing Spanish, traveling Argentina, and working in real hospitals with real patients. Everything that I was hoping to experience was checked off of my list before I left. I would highly recommend this program.

How can this program be improved?
The Spanish class was not particularly beneficial, and overall I didn't practice Spanish nearly as much as I wanted to. Part of that was my lack of taking advantage of certain opportunities, however.
Response from Projects Abroad

Dear Myah: it's great to read that we were able to help you confirm your path towards Nursing school in our project! We agree that going abroad to a developing country to be able to observe medical procedures is a vastly different experience than what such young students would get to do in the US - it is definitely a more complete learning experience and one that will truly help you make sound decisions for your future. We do believe in mixing the medical aspect with a cultural immersion, which is why we do include the Spanish lessons - hopefully you will get to practice more of your Spanish in your next project!

Yes, I recommend this program
Mariah
9/10

I went hoping for simply something to set me apart for my pre-med application and resume, but was not prepared for the amount of learning I experienced and the drastic personal change that occurred.
The raw experience was something to behold. As a first time traveller going through Projects Abroad was comforting. I was able to gain confidence to go on weekend excursions and experience enough to definitely set me apart from other graduates.
I wish I had had enough time to stay for an extra week and also travel independently after my project as by that time I felt I had enough knowledge to stay safe, have knowledge about the local culture, and have a good time.
Would 10/10 recommend to any pre-med student or a newbie traveller!

How can this program be improved?
I think if the program (Public Health) had more medical equipment and resources, such as interpreters. We would have been able to reach more individuals in need.
Response from Projects Abroad

Dear Mariah, thanks for sharing! We are happy to hear you had a personal growth in addition to the medical training you were able to experience. Thank you for your feedback, we will share it with our Operations team in Cambodia - we are always looking for ways to improve! Hopefully you can come back to Cambodia to travel a bit more later on!

Yes, I recommend this program
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Christina
10/10

I did the High School Special Care and Community project in Cusco, Peru, with a good friend from home for four weeks this past summer, and I loved every minute of it! Prior to our departure, our parents were a little weary of allowing two teenage girls to travel to a different continent alone, but the Projects Abroad staff were extremely reassuring and provided a ton of information about not only what we were to expect in the country, but how to effectively prepare before and afterwards. Communication with the program was always timely and informative. When we landed in Cusco after a full 24 hours of traveling, we were met exactly in the way that had been described to us previously: with a Projects Abroad sign, by our first and last names, and with a friendly smile. In Cusco we always felt safe, and although the program was structured with activities like building furniture and painting games for schools in the area, we had plenty free time in the afternoons to explore various markets around the city and go to the mall.

The "care" aspect of our project was time we spent in a daycare. We were placed in a local, government-run program for anemic children. There, they were provided with two meals (breakfast and lunch) and a lot of fun toys to play with. Most of the teachers were also parents of a child in the center, so I think our help was very appreciated as they had their hands pretty full. We assisted mostly with feeding the kids and keeping them entertained during the day so their mothers and fathers could go to work nearby. They were all so cute! Around halfway through our time at the placement, my friend and I wanted to switch to helping the older children at the placement. Projects Abroad accommodated this change without hesitation. These kids were around four and five years old, and so we were able to actually help teach them in addition to playing. Their teacher had us make a lot of posters to hang up around their classroom as well as teach them the colors of the rainbow in English. We did lots of chalk drawings outside on the pavement too.

Our host family was amazing as well. We stayed in a house composed of five or so floors, each described as its own “apartment”, which ended up being pretty accurate. Each floor had around three bedrooms, a bathroom, kitchen, and living space. Our bedroom even had an ensuite bathroom, which was very nice. Even though we were prepared to sacrifice the showers we usually took at home, we were pleasantly surprised by the pressure quality and the hot water available to us always. Everything in the house was also very clean and organized. Because it was winter when we arrived, it was fairly cold in the house, as none of the buildings in Peru really have indoor heating; however, with a warm blanket, socks, and a jacket, we were fine. They provided us with three meals a day, which typically consisted of pan (a sweet bread) with butter and jam for breakfast, and rice with a meat (chicken, beef, etc.) for lunch and dinner. Overall, I had an amazing experience in Peru, and I recommend the High School Care and Community special to anyone looking to make a positive difference and get a taste for a new culture/country!

Response from Projects Abroad

Dear Christina,

It sounds like you had a wonderful time in Peru! I am sure the teachers and parents were very thankful for all your help. The kids are always happy to see new smiling faces and learn from volunteers who come from all around the world. We do understand that you are travelling very far away to a different culture, which is why our staff works very hard prior to your departure so that you are informed and have accurate expectations and that you feel safe and supported at all times once you arrive. Thanks for sharing

Yes, I recommend this program
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Dervla
10/10

This July I joined many other volunteers from around the world on a Care and Community High School Specials Project with Projects Abroad in Cambodia. During my time on this project, I got to experience many different aspects of the country including their culture and their way of life. I got to spend several days in two remote schools on Silk Island, this was truly a big eyeopener. In these schools I got to teach the kids basic English and create friendships during different activities, such as games, singing and dancing. I also got to leave my mark on the school by doing some renovation work, such as painting and plastering walls and concreting paths just outside of the schools. While working with the kids was our main priority, we also went on many cultural and historical trips to give us a better insight on the country we were working in. We visited land marks such as the Killing Fields and the S-21 Genocide Museum, Angkor Wat and its surrounding temples, The Silk Factory on Silk Island and many more. The staff had us busy every evening, be it taking us out for dinner, planning sessions at the hotel, or showing us around the beautiful city of Phnom Penh. The accommodation was very satisfactory and I experienced no issues. I have made some lifelong friends on this trip and will never forget it. There were a mix of staff from all different countries and every one of them were so friendly and helpful. They made sure we got to experience Cambodia as best we could and really made this the trip of an lifetime.

How can this program be improved?
In my honest opinion, I can't think of any ways this that this programme could be improved. every aspect of my time abroad was a lifer changing experience.
Response from Projects Abroad

Thanks for sharing, Dervla! We understand that you are travelling a long way to get to your project and that you are staying for just a few weeks, which is why we design High School Specials so you are busy with both your project work and exploring the culture around you. We are glad to hear you had such an amazing time in Cambodia with the kids as well as your fellow volunteers and our staff. Hope to see you again in another one of our projects soon.

Yes, I recommend this program
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Sophie
9/10

During the summer of 2018, I spent 3 weeks in Cambodia with Projects Abroad. Including weekend trips to Kampot and Siem Reap, I spent most of my time in Phnom Penh working in a school. Overall I found the trip amazing. The weekends and dinners during the week allowed me to relax and enjoy time with the other people on my trip, while the work during the day helped me to feel like I was making a difference. The hotel I stayed with was overall good but the food wasn’t amazing so our project supervisors took us out for dinner nightly. All our problems were dealt with quickly and professionally. Definetly would recommend to others ! Support was also provided afterwards as projects aboard stayed in touch.

How can this program be improved?
Hotel wasn’t great but was told it was the last year they were bringing volunteers there.
Response from Projects Abroad

Dear Sophie, it's great to read you had such a great time in Cambodia. We do work hard to have a balance between your volunteer work and exploring the beautiful sightings that Cambodia has to offer. Thank you for your feedback as well, we are indeed working to provide more comfortable accommodation for our current volunteers. Hope to see you again in another one of our projects soon!

Yes, I recommend this program

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