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  • Medicine
  • Caribbean
  • HS

Dominican Republic: Emergency Medicine


Learn real-world emergency medicine and complete the Wilderness First Responder Course. Then broaden your skills as you shadow doctors in a small rural clinic, contributing to the community in immeasurable ways.

Students come on this adventure not just because they like medicine and want to help people. They come here because they like adventure too: hiking palm tree lined paths to pristine Caribbean beaches, rafting down a jungle river, swimming under a towering waterfall and surfing a smooth beach break. This hands-on learning trek not only focuses on modern western medicine, but also explores the community approach to healthcare.

Earn a Wilderness First Responder (WFR) Certification and then take skills learned in role-play scenarios and put them to use in real life. Travel to rural villages and spend time in hospitals and clinics. Work with Dominicans on public health issues.

June 23 - July 13 HS21 days$5,880Available
July 16 - August 5 HS21 days$5,880Available
Earn & Learn
Dominican Republic: Emergency Medicine Earn & Learn

Earn & Learn

Broadreach combines your thirst for fun and adventure with tangible skill development, real-world educational opportunities and a genuine commitment to service. While on program, you’ll earn internationally recognized certifications, documented community service hours and even college credits. It’s what we call “Earn & Learn,” and it’s what you’ll take home as evidence of your many accomplishments.

Dominican Republic Emergency Medicine offers 3 health college credits through Lesley University. Additionally, students earn 25 hours of documented community service and may pursue 2 certifications, including a Wilderness First Responder (WFR) medical certification.

  • Must be at least 16 years old when course begins


Course Description

This course includes all topics covered in a Wilderness Advanced First Aid course plus numerous additional topics, case studies, patient assessment drills, and a final simulation. Mornings will be devoted to lectures and afternoons will be devoted to practical hands-on sessions and rescue simulations. Instructors will use made-up victims, stage blood and video taping as means for enhanced learning.

Course Objectives
  • Students will be able to:
  • Demonstrate competency in assessing a patient, handling emergencies, and utilizing basic life support equipment and procedures to the level of certification.
  • Determine blood pressure and lung sounds
  • Demonstrate the ability to perform CPR, control hemorrhaging, properly assess and stabilize an injured spine, manage fractures and other musculoskeletal injuries, reduce simple dislocations, cleanse and dress wounds, and manage environmental emergencies
  • Determine the nature and extent of illness or injury, measure pulse rates and blood pressure, assess respiratory status, observe changes in skin color, search for medical alert identification
  • Establish priority for emergency care and render appropriate care to competency level
  • Assess and assist in the extrication of a patient from an entrapment
  • Demonstrate knowledge and be able to use or assist in the use of accepted rescue and medical techniques, procedures, and devices as needed
  • Assist in evacuating patient to an ambulance or medical facility and use accepted emergency medical techniques, procedures, and devices
  • Report nature and extent of illness or injury to ambulance personnel or receiving facility via radio, establish on-line medical control as needed, continually reassess patient during evacuation and provides care as needed
  • Work in extreme environmental conditions and various terrains
  • Document and report both orally and in the prescribed format to ambulance or hospital personnel


During this 21-day adventure students partake in 80 hours of intense learning with the goal of earning two certifications:

  • Wilderness First Responder (WFR)
  • CPR


Through service, gain a more meaningful connection to the cultures and communities you explore while taking an active role to address important global issues at the local level. While in the Dominican Republic, work with a hospital and the local community on health education campaigns. The projects give you the opportunity to use the methods you learn in class to make real life contributions to the health of the local community.

  • Assist with medical paperwork
  • Take local community members’ vitals and blood pressure
  • Participate in a weeklong campaign to better the health of the locals by educating and promoting healthier lifestyles

2 Certifications

25 Service Hours

3 College Credits

Dominican Republic: Emergency Medicine Itinerary


Medicine camp for teens in Dominican Republic

Arrive in the vibrant city of Santo Domingo, meet your team and take in the historic sights from the rooftop patio of our hotel. Head to Las Galeras, a tiny beachfront town on the rugged Samana Peninsula where we begin the challenging and life changing 80-hour Wilderness First Responder certification. Under the instruction of expert medical professionals, learn how to handle a wide range of medical issues and emergency situations that could happen anytime, anywhere, whether close to home or hours away from modern medical facilities. Sharpen your skills through hands-on role playing and life-like medical scenarios in the backcountry. Take a break to try out surfing or snorkel in crystal clear waters.

Medical study abroad for teens

We continue our WFR studies surrounded by a lush national rainforest at a private villa. Learn when and where to inject epinephrine. Assess whether or not an injured person can hike out of the wilderness or if you need to make a stretcher out of improvised materials. How do you stop massive bleeding? Or carry someone who is bigger than you are? Or handle an allergic reaction? Our busy days are punctuated with adventure: hike to a waterfall for a fresh water swim and enjoy an exhilarating whitewater rafting trip.

summer programs for high school students

With a better understanding of both community and modern medicine, we enter another realm of community development — public health. Learn about global health trends and the specific challenges facing the Dominican Republic’s public health care system. Spend time in a rural clinic and help local health volunteers and professionals. Educate the community on topics ranging from nutrition, hygiene, AIDS and malaria prevention. When we are not discussing and implementing different health interventions, we experience rich culture. Our experiences give us a broader understanding of the various levels of health care available and the approaches to preventive medicine in this developing nation.

high school study abroad summer programs

Celebrate all your hard work and new achievements with a visit to El Encuentro Beach, a friendly beach community on the Northern coast. Unwind with some well-deserved beach time, take on a new challenge and learn to surf, go on an incredible waterfall hike, and prepare to say goodbye to your newfound friends and this amazing country.

summer camps high school students
  • Trip Highlights

  • Earn your Wilderness First Responder (WFR) certification
  • Perform healthcare service work in a Dominican community
  • Shadow local doctors during small clinic rotations
  • Go on wilderness adventures including rainforest hikes, rafting, surfing and snorkeling
  • Learn medical Spanish terminology to help communicate with patients
Dominican Republic: Emergency Medicine Reviews & Testimonials

Reviews & Testimonials

Dawn Safine

This was my son’s second trip with Broadreach. He enjoyed the program and the leaders. Each time he attends one of Broadreach’s programs, he comes back with more confidence and awareness. We felt comfortable sending him with Broadreach, because of the quality of the leaders and the program planning. While he was away, we received a daily blog about their activities. Each day a different student wrote about their experience, this gave us an expansive view of his trip plus we were able to learn about the other students. Our son’s take away from his summer experiences allow him a greater appreciation of his life, family and his talents.

Catherine Nohre

This trip was absolutely brilliant. From the moment we arrived, the group clicked, and our adventrure in the rainforest and ATM caves at the beginning really bonded us for our WFR course with our fantabulous instructor Dave. All the locations were wonderful, from the awesome rainforest to the beautiful and all around idyllic Long Caye. The community service in San Ignacio was really cool, especially at the hospital where I got to help in the ER and visit the morgue. All in all, this trip was an amazing experience that I would repeat in a heartbeat.

Emily T. from Easton, MD

This trip has made me much more of a confident person. I loved bonding and being weird with everyone because I realized that I didn’t have to be anything but myself. Learning how to handle emergency medical situations and getting the opportunity to lead has been an amazing experience and I am so thankful to have gone on this trip.

Alaina Lapanse

The trip was really incredible. Our entire group got along perfectly right away and all of the things we did (swimming, hiking, snorkeling, etc.) made it even better. Best of all our WFR course was so interesting and the instructor Dave is the best ever.

Mary S. Shain from St. Thomas, VI

My son is thinking about becoming a doctor. That is why we chose this trip. When he came home, the first thing he said to me was “I want to work at the hospital after school.” I handed him the stethoscope and blood pressure cuff I bought for him while he was away. He was ecstatic. He is checking my blood pressure 3 times a week. The trip was the right amount of challenging academics, adventure and cultural experience, and it seems to have confirmed his career choice.

Samantha Kitchen

This trip was one of the best experiences of my life. I loved all the places we went and I made friends that I will never forget. The WFR course was tough, but we got through it as a group and it really brought us closer together. For anyone considering a career in medicine or who just loves the outdoors, this is a great trip!

Carey Celata

The staff on this trip made everything so great. The amazing activities that we did were awesome throughout the 3 weeks. The WFR course was so much fun and very interesting. All the people were nice and I will always remember this trip.

Alyssa Connors

This is a fantastic trip for everyone, whether they’re interested in medicine or not. The WFR course is lots of fun, and the rest of the trip is filled with adventures, interesting academics, and opportunities to meet great new people.

Dultha Gallaher from East Hampton, NY

This trip can potentially be life changing for the person that goes on it. Each experience was methodically thought out and performed brilliantly. Some of the favorites were getting up close and personal with sharks, eel and stingrays while snorkeling. This trip changed my life by providing me with new experiences.

Lori Hoch from Brookville, NY

Doug is home, safe and sound and in possession of memories of the adventure of his life! In addition to the pride in his own ability to meet challenges previously unimagined, the fun he had with the terrific group of participants, now all his close friends, is what made the trip unforgettable. And from a parent perspective, I can’t thank you enough for the online updates! We were thrilled each day to share glimpses of the kids’ experiences with detail and humor in their own words. All in all, the Wilderness Medicine program was a complete success and far exceeded our expectations!

Emma Huston

My Broadreach trip was amazing. Although I was nervous, all my worries paid off. The WFR course was actually really fun, and the community service was very enlightening. I made great friends, and got along with everyone well. Awesome experience overall!

Teresa Kropp from St Petersburg, FL

Our son just came back from the trip of a lifetime with Broadreach! Not only did he come home with his Wilderness First Responder Certification, but also wonderful new friends from across the country, great outdoor experiences and terrific memories of Belize. He gave the trip an A++ rating!

Melissa Stafford from Littleton, CO

This was a terrific trip for my daughter. Although the WFR class was a lot of work, she really enjoyed it and learned so much. She absolutely love working in the clinic, and that confirmed to her that she’d like to pursue a career in medicine. She embraced the cultural experience and homestay, and learned to deal with different people and different situations. She came home more confident, sensitive and aware. I know she’ll never forget the trip or the friends she made.

Jeff Baierlein from Chesapeake, VA

Dear Broadreach,

I have had the pleasure of working with Adam Walters and Liz Wilmers this past week, as the Wilderness First Responder instructor for the Wilderness & Traditional Medicine 11 course in Belize.

Liz and Adam impressed me greatly with their professionalism, group management skills, and ability to work with teenagers. Their remarkable sensitivity to the developmental needs of teenagers, their ability to be gentle and encouraging yet set firm boundaries, and their skill in expertly blending summertime fun with serious academic learning was a pleasure to witness. I was impressed with their risk management, ability to adjust activities and progressions on the fly, and overall program leadership.

In my 24 years of professional experience in outdoor education, I have rarely come across an instructor team quite like this. They are a credit to Broadreach, and it was my genuine pleasure to work with them both.

Jeff Baierlein

Lead Instructor, Wilderness Medical Associates,
Executive Director, Baltimore Chesapeake Bay Outward Bound Center

Galilea Escobedo from Houston, TX

The best part of this trip was going to the ATM caves, because there is no other place like it. Also the Mayan ritual because that is a once in a lifetime thing. I learned to try new things, step out of my comfort zone and to stop over analyzing everything because a lot of things are a once in a lifetime experience. The whole trip was great because the people made it so much better and I definitely made lifelong friends.

Jenn Sirotkin

I loved all the places we stayed. All of it was great, especially the kids and leaders. I figured out what I want to do in life. It was especially memorable and worthwhile. I made friends that are now my family.

Shanna Plotkin

I thought this trip was amazing. I loved every place we went to and I was always sad to leave them. All the excursions we went on, such as the ATM cave, Mayan ruins and snorkeling were incredible. The WFR course was so great and our instructor was amazing. You learn so much but have so much fun! The people I met, the things I learned, everything I saw was perfect and I will never forget these 3 weeks.

Russell Skinner

You know, Broadreach trips are always awesome, full of great memories, and cool people. I really can’t imagine being miserable with this company, I always feel taken care of and I of course learned a load.

Robyn Shumborski from Alberta, Canada

In just this short period of time I see a change in David’s appreciation for the environment, sensitivity towards a different culture and an overall maturity. The experience confirmed his desire to work in the healthcare field and to pursue further opportunities to do community and volunteer work.

Mary Lee Williams from Lebanon, IL

Daphne thought this was the best trip. She liked the different locations, the goal/process of getting her wilderness certificate, and all the changing aspects of the trip. She loved the challenge of successfully overcoming all the obstacles!

Madelaine Hack

Not only did we learn so much, but we were able to tour the country and see some amazing sights. There were underwater caves, Mayan ruins, Jaguars and beaches. But besides the sights there were the experiences with the group when we would be sitting under the stars and I could only think about how I didn’t want to be anywhere else.

Leanna Smith

I loved every minute of this trip from climbing the Mayan ruins to re-enacting casualties in WFR to spending the day snorkeling on Caye Caulker. Everything was so much fun and interesting and I participated in everything surrounded by some of the most amazing students and leaders I have ever met.

Jennifer Wise from Livermore, CA

I loved my trip to Belize. All the places we stayed were beautiful. Seeing the ATM caves was so different from anything I’ve done before. The group leaders, WFR teachers and other people on the program made getting through WFR enjoyable. I will always remember this trip and my new friends.

Leah Tavasi

Doing the entire WFR course was very satisfying. I feel confident now to help people in a wilderness context and hope to use my skills in the near future.

Jonah Pregulman

I went on this trip 2 years ago. It was one of the best summers of my life. Between caving, hanging out with friends, leaning WFR skills and volunteering there was never a dull moment. This trip started my interest in the medical field, I am now an EMT and going to nursing school. This course was a huge advantage in my EMT class, I went into it knowing half the knowledge all ready! I still keep in touch with my trip mates and even my WFR instructor Jeff! Best Trip Ever!

Abby Leibowitz

When you look back on your trip, you won’t think “I did one really amazing thing”, you’ll realize that you did hundreds of amazing things every day.

Hudson Tillett

You get to see a different culture and a total different way of living and see a lot of things you would never see anywhere else.

Dominican Republic: Emergency Medicine FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions

What is included in the tuition cost and what additional expenses should I expect?

Tuition is all inclusive for instruction, food, accommodations, and activities from the time you arrive in country. However, you are responsible for your airfare, spending money (we suggest about $150-200 depending on the program), any required textbooks, and student expenses such as medical fees. Some trips require scuba gear which can be rented, purchased or in some cases borrowed from Broadreach. Finally, for our high school trips that offer college credit, you can elect to receive an official Lesley University credit transcript for approximately $180 per credit hour. For more information about expenses that might apply to your program, click here.

How does travel work?

For most programs, we have a few recommended flights and an arrival time range, and we usually give you the option to book flights on your own or through our travel agency partner. A few programs have required group flights, which we set up in advance. Students travel independently, but often meet up along the way, and we collect student itinerary details. Broadreach instructors will be waiting in the arrivals hall of the destination airport to greet each student, and they’ll be wearing special shirts and holding a Broadreach sign. We also mail students Broadreach shirts to wear while traveling which makes it easy for them to identify each other. Typically, making travel arrangements and the actual travel days go very smoothly.

How does Broadreach address safety?

Safety is our top priority, and it is something we evaluate from every angle throughout the year. We’re very proud of our safety record over the past 26 years of running international programs for students. There are so many ways to address how we handle safety, including the extensive experience and training of our instructors, the specific locations we choose to visit, the relationships we have established with our local partners, and the 24/7 support we provide our groups. We have extensive program-specific risk management plans and safety standards that we adhere to. We’d be happy to talk about safety in more detail for the program you’re considering if you’d like to call our office.

Do I need to purchase travel insurance?

We require that students have at least $100,000 of emergency evacuation coverage and some kind of international medical coverage, as well as coverage for scuba diving for programs that include diving. We offer two different policy options, or if you already have a policy that meets this criteria, we would just collect those policy details after enrollment.

Our Tuition Protection policy covers cancellations for medical reasons up to 100% and for any other reason up to 75% (except for residents of NY state). It’s also a great comprehensive travel insurance policy, including medical coverage, emergency evacuation, travel delay, baggage (loss or delay), etc. The cost of the policy ranges from $339-379 based on the program duration. For more specific coverage details, please call our office.

Who will my instructors be?

Broadreach instructors are highly experienced, passionate, energetic and supportive. The average age of our instructors is 28 years old, and depending on the program, they meet specific qualifications (a Master’s degree in the subject area, PADI Open Water Scuba Instructor certification, foreign language fluency, Wilderness First Responder certification, etc).

Do your programs accommodate food preferences or food allergies?

We do our best to accommodate allergies and food preferences but we consider the situation, country and the program to determine whether it will be a good fit for the specific dietary restriction. It’s important that you let Broadreach know well in advance of any food preferences or allergies so we can determine whether your restrictions will work on your program.

Can I contact Broadreach alumni families for more information?

Absolutely! Just call our office and we can put you in touch with past participants who have joined the programs that interest you. Our alumni families are happy to share their first-person experiences.

How does payment work? Is the deposit or tuition refundable?

We require a non-refundable deposit of $1000 to lock in your spot, and then the final balance can be spread out and paid in a few different ways. The final payment is non-refundable and is due 4 months before departure. Our optional tuition protection plan covers cancellations for medical reasons up to 100% and cancellations for any other reason up to 75% (except for residents of NY state).

What do the academics involve? How do college credits work? What if I don’t take the program for credit?

Academics will vary by program but usually include journals, discussions, lectures, research projects, and a midterm and final exam. We expect all of our students to participate fully in the academic course work on our programs, regardless of whether they have chosen to take it for official college credit.

We partner with Lesley University in Cambridge, MA to offer college credit for our academic high school and college programs. Those credits are widely accepted at colleges and universities all over North America, and we can often let you know if an alumni student has transferred those credits to a specific school in the past. For more details, click here.

Do you offer any discounts or scholarships?

In the fall, we have a few different early enrollment discounts– please call our office for more information. We also offer a 5% discount on the second enrollment from the same immediate family in a summer. This offer is available to an individual student or siblings. The 5% discount will be applied to the program of lesser cost, and cannot be combined with any other discounts.

We do offer some scholarships through the Broadreach Foundation. Please call our office for more information on applying.

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