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Lowlands, Port of Spain, Matelot, Matura, Trinidad, Tobago

Program Description

Experience the Caribbean and expand your knowledge of strategic communication during a two-week, global service-learning program in Trinidad and Tobago. 

With the globalization of businesses and organizations, being able to understand and work in diverse international and intercultural settings is critical. This course examines the phenomenon of global strategic communication, including the enabling environmental factors, with a focus on Trinidad and Tobago.

In order to accomplish our class goals, help our community partner achieve their goals, and create a truly global experience for everyone involved, students will: 

  • Assist in implementing strategic communication tactics for the community partner and the cities we visit.
  • Explore Trinidad country and culture through field trips and community events, including a hike through the rainforest, visiting various local beaches, and spending time at the local leatherback turtle-nesting site.
  • Meet with the leaders (and members) of community organizations, community elders, and others to better understand the culture and specific challenges facing the community.
  • Meet with local youth through community development projects.
  • Meet with local public relations practitioners, journalists, and non-profit organization leaders to better understand the strategic communication landscape. 

Location Description

During the program, students will travel to four cities in Trinidad and Tobago over two weeks. They will start their experience in Trinidad's capitol, Port of Spain. During this portion of the trip students will stay in the city center and have the opportunity to meet with local communication practitioners and community leaders and explore the city by enjoying the local cuisine, visiting the beautiful churches, dancing to steel pan music, and soaking in the sun at Maracas beach. 

Next, students will travel to the north coast of Trinidad to the unique, breathtaking and remote villages of Matelot and Matura. During their stay in Matelot, students will meet with DORCAS Women's Group and other community members while also experiencing incredible home cooked meals, hiking through the rainforest, relaxing by the river and visiting the astounding leather-back turtle nesting site. During their stay in Matura, students will spend their time working with Nature Seekers, a non-profit organization dedicated to environmental conservation, particularly around the protection of leatherback sea turtles. Participants will be able to engage directly with the organization’s founder and staff, in addition to participating in activities and tours directly connected to their work. Students will also explore issues related to strategic communication while learning more about the organization’s history and goals.

Finally, student will end their journey in beautiful and relaxing Lowlands, Tobago, where they will enjoy Pigeon Point Beach, Buccoo Reef, and the Nylon Pool. 


Shana Meganck | | SCOM


Accommodations will be provided. Students will share rooms in guest houses and host family housing, depending on the city. Note: While in Matelot and Matura, participants should be prepared for basic lodging standards (basic beds and linens, open air housing, and hot/humid conditions). Bugs (geckos, mosquitos, ants and lizards) are very common in the region. 

All transportation to required activities will be provided. 

All meals will be provided as part of the program. Most meals can accommodate allergies or food preferences; however, there are a couple that cannot be tailored. Students should bring or plan to purchase additional snacks.

Additional Items to Consider

A full itinerary will be provided once students are enrolled in the program.

There is cell phone service in each city, but students are responsible for their own international cell phone plan. This is not required, but advised as wi-fi access is minimal. 

Proof of COVID-19 vaccination will be required. 

COVID-19 Location Information:

Each country has different requirements upon entry with regard to COVID-19. Please check this website for the most up-to-date information on what is required for the country (or countries) that are part of this program. Please note that this changes often, so we encourage you to check back frequently.

Applicant Criteria

Applicants must have a GPA minimum of 2.5

Prerequisite: SCOM 313: 9 hours of SCOM courses including SCOM 240 and one at the 100-level or permission of the instructor.

SCOM 665: No prerequisites

Application Process

This list serves as an application preview. To apply, students will need to complete the following:

  • Study Abroad Online Application ($40 fee)
  • Short Essay 
  • List of academic references
  • Interview with Program Director
  • Official transcript required for non-JMU students

Further details and instructions about these application requirements will be available upon log-in. 

Application Deadline


All dates are tentative and subject to change


SCOM 313: Topics in Communication Studies: Strategic Communication in Trinidad & Tobago (3 credits)

SCOM 665: Communication and Advocacy in Trinidad & Tobago (3 credits)

Courses listed here are to be used as a general guideline for program curriculum. *All courses are considered pending until approved by the Academic Department, Program, and/or College.


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