Country: Peru

Instituion Description

Lima, the capital of Peru, sits on the country's arid Pacific coast. Though its colonial center is well preserved, today Lima is a bustling metropolis that's one of South America’s largest cities. It’s known for its vibrant food scene, encompassing specialties from ceviche and traditional coastal cooking to refined global fare.

Host Site: Universidad Peruana Unión, Lima (UPeU)

Program Summary: Loma Linda University (LLU) and UPeU have partnered to initiate a medical Spanish immersion program for LLU medical students, as well as students from other healthcare professions. Taking the educational needs of medical students into consideration, UPeU has offered to create a customized mission elective experience that combines half-day medical Spanish study with half-day clinical rotations for students in the medical field. UPeU will host Spanish medical terminology classes on its campus, while clinical rotations will be provided in a wide variety of hospital settings, from larger, private hospitals, to clinics serving and smaller government hospitals. In addition to language study and clinical rotations, students will have the opportunity to participate in UPeU campus life, including cross-cultural exchange with UPeU medical students, church activities, service activities, and cultural activities in Lima. UPeU is also willing to assist students in coordinating excursions to other parts of Peru (i.e., Lima, Cusco, Machu Picchu, Puno, Paracas).

Number of students: The program allows for a maximum of nine (9) students at a time.

Program Structure: Students will complete 2-3 hours of clinical rotations Monday – Thursday mornings, followed by 3-4 hours of Spanish language study, Monday – Thursday afternoons and Friday morning. Weekends will be less structured, allowing students the opportunity to get involved in campus activities or local interactions.

Program Duration: 4 weeks.

Medical Preceptor Oversight of Student Experience: Local physicians will provide mentorship for the students participating in this program. The physician will be responsible for ensuring that students meet the goals and objectives of their mission elective. Because the physician may be practicing in a variety of hospital settings, students can expect to be exposed to more than one clinical setting during their time in Peru.

Medical Sites: UPeU enjoys positive relationships with a vast network of medical sites, including public and private hospitals and community-based clinics. Every effort will be made to structure rotations according to students’ interests and level of medical knowledge and Spanish-language ability.

Host Site Cultural Considerations: UPeU is a Seventh-day Adventist institution that upholds the beliefs and spiritual culture of the Seventh-day Adventist Church. Students participating in this elective are asked to respect the spiritual climate of the campus and adhere to the expectations outlined in the LLU Student Handbook. Students found to be in violation of the Student Handbook may be asked to leave UPeU prematurely at their own cost.

Lodging & Meals: Students will be housed in the dormitories of UPeU, along with Peruvian students pursuing their own academic programs. When on campus, students will eat their meals in the campus cafeteria. If students are not on campus during mealtime (i.e., possibly during a clinical rotation), they will be responsible for their own meals.

Transportation: Students may be required to take public transportation to their clinical sites in the afternoons. UPeU will ensure that students are prepared to use public transport, including buses and taxis. Students should be prepared to pay for transportation costs.

Health and Travel Insurance: Students are required to travel with adequate travel/health insurance. The LLU Risk Management Student Health Plan provides international healthcare coverage for students. SIMS purchases additional short-term travel insurance for students participating on this university-approved elective.


Students for International Mission Service (SIMS) International Mission Service Learning (I-Serve) & Student Mission Elective (SME) program cost for 4 weeks: 

Total UPeU program expenses

$1525 (excluding airfare)

Languages Spoken:

  • Spanish


Last Updated: 2019-05-31