Havana, Cuba

March 11-18, 2017

Mississippi College School of Law is pleased to offer its spring break study abroad program in Havana, Cuba.  Students will take a two-credit course in Comparative Civil Rights while spending a full week exploring the wonders of Havana.  The course will be taught by Professor Matt Steffey of MC Law.

Who Can Participate

The program is open to full-time or part-time J.D. and LL.M. students, including international students, enrolled in an ABA-accredited law school. Participating J.D. students must have attended law school for at least one year and currently be in good standing.  LL.M. students must be in good standing.  Therefore, the program is only available to current second and third year J.D. students and LL.M. students.

Maximum enrollment is 18 students.

For MC Law students, see MC Law policies regarding academic standing and eligibility to participate in intersession courses.

Visiting students must have written approval from the Dean of their home school to be eligible to participate and are advised to consult with their home school's Dean or Registrar prior to application to ensure acceptance of credit for the program. Transcript request information will be provided to visiting students upon completion of the program. Visiting students are responsible for submitting their own transcript requests following the program. Acceptance of any credit or grade for any course taken in the program is subject to determination by the home institution.

In 2015, 15 students participated representing Mississippi College School of Law and eight other American law schools, the University of Arizona, Arizona State University, Seattle University, the University of Northern Kentucky, the University of Maryland, Fordham University, Florida A&M University, and New York Law School.

In 2016, 16 students from Mississippi College School of Law, Arizona State University, Florida A&M University, Golden Gate University, Valparaiso University, and Western New England University participated in the program.

Academics

Upon completion of the course, students will earn a total of two credit hours from the following course:

Law 649 -- Comparative Civil Rights

The course will compare and contrast, from both a theoretical and doctrinal perspective, civil rights and liberties in the United States and other countries and regional organizations. Topics to be covered include freedom of speech, freedom of religion, and other substantive and procedural aspects of liberty and equality. When the course is offered in a study abroad program, special attention will be given to region involved. 

Grades will be determined by class participation and a paper to be completed following the return from Cuba. 

Classes will meet in Cuba from Monday, March 13, through Friday, March 17, from approximately 8:30 a.m. - 11:30 a.m. each day. If travel schedules permit, there will be an introductory class meeting prior to the trip departure, date and time TBD, in which visiting students may participate by videoconference.

Professor Steffey’s biography can be found here.

All standard MC Law rules for class attendance, participation, and grading will apply to this course.  Please refer to the MC Law 2015-2016 Academic Year Catalog for details, available here.

Facilities

Students will be housed and Cuba classes will take place at Comodoro (Bungalows Alborada), a four star accommodation.

Program Costs

The following is an estimate of total student expenses for the program. This includes both payment to MC Law and anticipated out-of-pocket expenses. These are only estimates and subject to change.

MC Law tuition for 2 credit hours:
Current Mc law students: $2136
Non-MC students (visiting students): $2258 (tuition at current 1L student tuition)

Travel/lodging/Administrative Fee: $3200 

This fee includes lodging for 7 nights, daily breakfast, 4 dinners, daily tours, and airport to hotel transfers in Havana.  A supplemental charge of $320 will be made for those who request single room, subject to availability.

This fee does not include airfare to Havana.  Students are responsible for arranging their air travel to and from Havana.  Depending on United States point of departure, prices can range from around $300 to $1000.  Students are encoraged to compare prices and best departure points.  Multpile airlins currently serve various U.S. cities and Havana.  We encourage students to coordinate travel plans to and from Havana as much as possible.

Registration Fee: $75
Spending money/non-included meals: $400-$600
Departure tax: $25

Travel Information

A valid U.S. passport AND a Cuban visa will be required for travel.  If you wish to participate in the program, you must obtain a passport immediately.  The program administrators will aid students in obtaining Cuban visas, but passports are required in order to obtain the visa.  Students will be given instruction regarding submission of passports for required visas for Cuba.

Money and Communications

U.S. credit and debit cards will not work in Cuba.  Students MUST take cash to Havana to be converted to Cuban Pesos.  The recommended amount of spending money is $75 per day.  Most students find this more than adequate.  Additionally, U.S. cell phones will not work in Cuba.  Students may call the U.S. from phones at the hotel for a fee.  While the hotel does offer internet, students should not expect the same standard of internet service available in the U.S. and should not rely on having constant or fast service.

Travel Advisories

A U.S. Department of State “Consular Information Sheet” on Cuba is available at https://travel.state.gov/content/passports/en/country/cuba.html. This is a U.S. government overview of information concerning Cuba for U.S. travelers. Please check it periodically for updates. In the unlikely event that Cuba is declared an “area of instability” by the U.S. government before or during the trip, or if the U.S. issues a “travel warning” for Cuba, students will be permitted to withdraw from the program and will receive a full refund of monies paid to MC Law.

The U.S. Department of State recommends (but does not require) U.S. citizens to register trips abroad with the Department of State. MC Law will register all program participants with the Department of State prior to the program.

PLEASE NOTE THAT THE ZIKA VIRUS IS PRESENT IN CUBA. You should consult the following information carefully prior to your departure regarding the prevention of infection for yourself and how to prevent infection to others. You should carefully follow the recommendations regarding prevention of infection to yourself and others both while in Mexico and upon your return. WOMEN WHO ARE PREGNANT OR WHO MAY BE PREGNANT SHOULD NOT PARTICIPATE IN THIS PROGRAM.

Information regarding the Zika virus in Cuba, including information about protection from mosquito bites, transmission, etc., can be found the Center for Disease Control website.

Additional information from the Mississippi State Department of Health can be found here.

Information about Permethrin treated clothing.

Cancellation Policy

MC Law does not anticipate that the program will be cancelled. However, in the unfortunate event that cancellation occurs, MC Law will refund all monies paid within 20 days of cancellation, and assistance will be provided in finding a similar study abroad program if so desired.

If there are any changes to significant aspects of the program (classes offered, teachers, dates, etc.), these will be communicated promptly, and students will be permitted to withdraw from the program and obtain a full refund of monies paid to MC Law for the program.

Access for Persons with Disabilities

Persons with disabilities should speak with program administrators in advance of applying.  Transportation and accommodations in Cuba are not as accessible to those with certain disabilities.  MC Law will make every effort to ensure students can participate.

Contact & Apply

Associate Dean Phillip McIntosh
Phone: 601.925.7145
Email: mcintosh@mc.edu.

Applications and required documents should be submitted to:

Ms. Brenda Guy
Mississippi College School of Law,
151 E. Griffith Street, Jackson, MS 39157
bguy@mc.edu
601-925-7140
Fax: 601-925-7113