Cambodia: A Different Study Abroad Service-Learning Experience

Wouldn’t you rather have a more hands-on experience rather than sitting in a classroom all day, when you could be exploring life in a different culture other than your own while serving communities in need?

Global Service Corps (GSC) offers students the opportunity to combine academic work, cultural immersion, and internship experiences working alongside GSC Cambodian NGO partners and other local community development professionals. GSC will work with your college program or advisor to provide service-learning programs for credit in the following areas:

  • 12-15 credit Fall or Spring Semester Program
  • 9-credit Summer Program
  • Internship and Independent Study Program

Click here to learn more about these program options: https://www.globalservicecorps.org/pages/students-seeking-international-volunteer-experience

Students from the University of Tennessee - Chattanooga (UTC) enjoy culturally significant sites around Phnom Penh. pc: Melanie M.

Students from the University of Tennessee – Chattanooga (UTC) enjoy culturally significant sites around Phnom Penh. pc: Melanie M.

Student participant Walker H. with some of the students he is teaching English. pc: Walker H.

Student participant Walker H. with some of the students he is teaching English. pc: Walker H.

More and more college students are choosing to study abroad. In fact, the number of students who spend at least a semester abroad has more than tripled in the past two decades. There are numerous benefits to studying abroad. Research has shown that students who participate in a study abroad program have increased job prospects after college and demonstrate an increase in social awareness. GSC’s study abroad programs offer the same benefits as the more traditional programs, with some added benefits, including:

  • In-Country Orientation and Training: Before participants dive into their service-learning project, GSC provides orientation and training, taught by our In-Country Coordinator (ICC). In orientation and training participants receive basic Khmer language lessons, cultural and historic tours in the capitol city of Phnom Penh, and an introduction to their project site.
  • Work with local NGO’s (non-government organizations) and other community organizations: GSC provides participants the opportunity to do hands-on work with the local Cambodian organizations that we partner with. This gives participants the chance to understand the cultural and technical aspects of their service project, gain insight to the challenges the community (and country) face, and become integrated into the local community.
  • A true cultural immersion experience: GSC’s programs allow participants to fully immerse themselves in the community, not only through their project work but in their day-to-day life as well. Participants will live with a local family in a homestay or apartment, in a guesthouse, or in on-site housing at an orphanage or monastery, giving participants a unique opportunity to become immersed in the local community and culture.
  • Weekend tours: For even more cultural immersion, participants on programs 4 weeks or longer will visit the UNESCO World Heritage site Ankor Wat in Siem Reap, guided by our ICC. Participants on a program 6-weeks or longer will be invited to visit our ICC’s village home for a rare experience to live as a local villager. Participants stay in a traditional village home, sleep on mats and enjoy traditional Khmer food prepared by family members. Tours of the local village, Buddhist monasteries and surrounding area are included. Finally, participants on a program for 8-weeks or longer may be able to join other participants in a workshop provided to community members on the subject of Public Health, Teaching English, or Leadership Training.
  • Field experience opportunities tailored more to your individual skills and interests: Students have the opportunity to be more than just a student observer in another country by serving and learning through five different programs including: Global Public Health, Child and Orphan Care, Teaching English, Community Development and Leadership Training, and Buddhist Immersion/Teaching English. You can also combine two or more programs for an Integrated Program.
Some UTC students with a group of Cambodian girls after teaching a Female Empowerment Workshop. pc: Sophak T.

Some UTC students with a group of Cambodian girls after teaching a Female Empowerment Workshop. pc: Sophak T.

Students visiting Ankor Wat, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Siem Reap, during their weekend tour. pc: Anna W.Y.

Students visiting Ankor Wat, a UNESCO World Heritage Site in Siem Reap, during their weekend tour. pc: Anna W.Y.

Students, guided by our In-Country Coordinator, explore a market in Phnom Penh. pc: Edwina Y.

Students, guided by our In-Country Coordinator, explore a market in Phnom Penh. pc: Edwina Y.

Student Conor C. facilitating a workshop with Cambodia students. pc: Sophak T.

Student Conor C. facilitating a workshop with Cambodia students. pc: Sophak T.

Deadlines are approaching for your Fall Semester Program and it isn’t too soon to start planning for your Spring Semester Program! Click here to start an application or contact our office by calling 503-954-1659 or emailing us at gsc@globalservicecorps.org; we’d be happy to answer your questions and provide you with more detailed information. Start planning today for a unique and unforgettable study abroad experience! 

Don’t forget to like our Facebook page so you can keep up with the latest news about our programs!

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