SIT Community Health and Social Policy

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Academic Program

Instruction consists of lectures, seminars, community visits, research, and independent study. Students participate in a two-week internship with a non-clinical health initiative and complete an independent study project. On-site orientation and educational field trips included.

  • Reviewed by: Staff: Neva Barker
  • Fields of study: Public health, isiZulu language, research methods, independent study project. SIT has two other programs in South Africa with themes of Multiculturalism and Human Rights or Social and Political Transformation that may be of interest. Contact the SAGE office for more information if interested in applying.
  • Eligibility: 7.5 cumulative GPA; background and coursework in public health
  • Number of program participants: 20

Living Arrangements

Students live in homestays in Durban and while visiting rural communities, and in hostels or small hotels during other program travels. Meals are taken as a group or with the host family.

Term Dates

  • Fall: Early September to mid-December
  • Spring: Early February to mid-May


  • Advising Tips: This program requires a faculty reference. Faculty referees may use the Scripps form or the student can provide a link to the online reference form.
  • Visa Information: All students must have a passport valid for at least six months after the program’s end date to study in another country. Students should apply for a passport as early as possible; in some cases, passport applications may need to be expedited. Students may need one or more visas, in addition to a valid passport. Visa application processes vary widely, and some visa processes are multi-step and complicated. SIT Study Abroad helps students to understand the visa process for each program. The SIT admissions counselor can answer passport and visa-related questions and concerns. Non-US citizens should consult with SIT early to determine the visa requirements based on their country of origin. SIT Study Abroad cannot guarantee visas for its participants, and it is ultimately the student’s responsibility to secure the appropriate visa in a timely manner.
  • Budget Planning: Cost of living is reasonable in South Africa and a student budget is sufficient for taking advantage of many opportunities.For budget planning purposes, click here to view the current cost of living comparison between Los Angeles and Durban.