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CIEE Cape Town: Service Learning
Cape Town, South Africa (Outgoing Program)
Program Terms: Fall,
Full Year,
This program is currently not accepting applications.
Program Sponsor: CIEE 
Restrictions: Vanderbilt applicants only
Fact Sheet:
Suzy Wang
Minimum GPA:
Language of Instruction: English Language Prerequisite: No
Program Provider: CIEE
Area(s) of Study:
Diverse studies available (see below)
Fall Calendar: Mid-July to mid-November Spring Calendar: Late January to early June
Program Description:
South Africa - Cape

At a Glance

The CIEE Service-Learning program provides students with an integrated approach to learning and community involvement. The program enables students to be active in service while providing opportunities to reflect upon the complexities and challenges facing Cape Town specifically and South Africa generally. The program is conducted in, and intends to meet the needs of, local communities in order to help foster civic responsibility while engaging students in a rigorous academic program of language study, research methodology, African studies, and research.

Program Dates


The Service-Learning program at Cape Town provides a framework for students to fulfill their educational and personal goals while also giving back to the communities in which their learning takes place. CIEE provides its own placement and oversight of the service component of the Service-Learning program.

The program runs during the fall and spring semesters and consists of 15 semester credits based upon three main components:

  • A two-part core course with integrated service
  • Language training which is appropriate to the communities where service is performed
  • An academic capstone project which draws upon all other elements of the program

Online Course Catalogue
Vanderbilt Course Evaluation List

Student Life

Cape Town is a beautiful coastal city with superb mountain walks, vineyards, and beaches. The 3,281 feet high flat-topped mountain, Table Mountain, dominates Cape Town's skyline.

The academic program is supplemented by field trips and excursions to various points of interest with relevance to Service-Learning and the cultural milieu of Cape Town and the Western Cape Province. Field trips and excursions may take place in and around the Cape Peninsula, the Cape Flats, and Robben Island.

The comprehensive cultural program developed by CIEE consists of visits to local theater, music, and dance productions; museum tours; and rural cooperatives. Events and activities are chosen to provide students with a good overview of the diversity in South Africa. A weekend homestay with a local family is also included in the cultural program.


Housing is included in the program fee. Students live in an apartment-style residence near campus and share the residence with fellow CIEE program participants. Students have small single rooms and share facilities with other students, all of whom share basic cleaning duties. Students are responsible for their own meals which are not included in the program fee. Students prepare their own meals in the residence or eat at establishments on or off campus.

Buffalo on the South African savannah


Situated on the southern tip of Africa, Cape Town is a vibrant multicultural city with a rich selection of day and night activities. Water sports, mountaineering, nightclubs, and restaurants are readily available.

The city is also a microcosm of the challenges facing many African countries in transition: how to successfully operate within a global economy while at the same time grappling with the vast socio-economic inequalities that are the legacy of the colonial and apartheid past.


Semester Costs

Dates / Deadlines:
There are currently no active application cycles for this program.
This program is currently not accepting applications.