UMKC Study Abroad South Africa Global Health and Social Issues Summer Program
Study Abroad Program Capetown

My time at UWC was possibly the most profound experience of my professional education. Culturally, I found South Africans to be warm, inviting, and almost without limits in their capacity for forgiveness and reconciliation. The diversity of Cape Town is extraordinary. I interacted with Malay, Hindu, Christian, Zulu, Tembu, Xhosa (Mandela’s tribe) and many more.
Former UMKC health sciences student after studying at University of the Western Cape

May 25-May 31, 2014 in Cape Town South Africa

Orientation: Saturday, February 22, 2014, 9:00 am - 12:00 pm

Pre-trip sessions during two Friday afternoon/Saturday intensive weekends during the spring semester: April 11-12 and April 25-26, 2014, and a post trip debriefing in June/July 2014.

Please email one of the Program Directors to add your name to the list of interested students by December 6, 2013  

Earn 3 UMKC credits in through this intensive, interdisciplinary course led by Health Administration faculty from UMKC’s Bloch School and hosted by UMKC's sister institution, University of the Western Cape in Cape Town, South Africa.

Course Number: PA 5587/470

This interdisciplinary course (3 credit hours) focuses broadly on global health and social issues from the perspectives of national and international policy, economic and cultural issues, and activities that can alleviate the world-wide burden of disease and disparity. Intensive pre-trip sessions include discussions on South African economic, political and social history in a 21st century context, recognizing the extraordinary dynamism of this very important country. Upon return to Kansas City, students will reflect on their experiences via formal presentation and report.

Students with an interest in health care as a clinical, political or economic topic, public policy, social services, etc. are invited to participate in this unique opportunity.

Cape Town, South Africa

Cape Town is South Africa’s second largest city. It is famous for its spectacular geographic setting with iconic Table Mountain overlooking “the Fairest Cape in all the world”. Forbes calls it one of the most beautiful cities on the globe. Apart from its physical beauty, Cape Town boasts great cultural diversity, a vibrant jazz scene and is at the heart of a legendary wine producing region. Its significance in the overturning of apartheid cannot be overemphasized.

The University of the Western Cape

Located in a northern suburb of Cape Town, UWC enjoys a proud history, having grown from a minor university of the apartheid era for local “colored” students to become a prominent force for political and academic freedom in modern South Africa. Archbishop Desmond Tutu serves as Chancellor of UWC.

In 1986, the University of Missouri became the first American university to sign an agreement of academic cooperation with a historically black South African university. Since that time, both systems have benefitted from years of student and faculty exchanges.

The School of Public Health at UWC has become a major resource in promoting optimal health in South Africa and within the world’s developing nations. It accomplishes this by preparing well informed policy makers and public health workers who share “a commitment to equity, social justice and human rights”. Local course work and field trips will be led by faculty from the UWC School of Public Health.


Click here to view the syllabus for the Cape Town summer study abroad program

Post course excursion

Students can participate in an optional, non-credit post-trip excursion to a South African game preserve, to the beautiful wine country or to the breathtaking seacoast near Cape Town.  While such post-trip visits are not a formal part of the program, the course leaders will be available to suggest how interested students might best take advantage of this unique opportunity.

Payment for some of the expenses may be collected in the spring to ensure availability of rooms, etc.


Students will stay in off-campus houses or boutique hotels in Cape Town.  The program fee will cover shared accommodations.  Students will be responsible for their own meals.

Travel to Cape Town

Students will travel independently to Cape Town and back to Kansas City. Several students may wish to travel together. Cape Town International Airport is 45 minutes from the UWC campus.

Financial Aid

Students are advised to check with their home academic units or the Financial Aid office regarding the availability of financial assistance.

Approximate costs

UMKC tuition and fees for three credit hours
Program fee-$800 (includes lodging, group meals, local group transportation, some entrance fees)
Meals approximately $250
Mandatory Study Abroad insurance: $50

Personal Necessities: $100
Passport-$100 (no visa required for US Citizens)
Roundtrip airfare approximately $1900


The University of Missouri System requires each study abroad participant to enroll in the UM HTH Worldwide Health Insurance Plan for the period of their program. HTH specializes in study abroad. The UM System has worked with them to create a comprehensive plan fitting our specific needs. Insurance is approximately $50 with no deductible.

Application information

Further information can be obtained from: Bloch School faculty (Mr. Michael Wood; Tel 816-361-9693 or Dr. Arif Ahmed; Tel 816-235-2319); International Academic Programs ( or 816-235-5759)