International Field Experience

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Field Experience Team
Somer Burke, MPH, CHES, CPH
International Field Experience Administrator


Steps to Applying for an IFE

Below are the steps that you should take when applying for an IFE.

We strongly suggest that you begin the process of planning for your IFE one year before your intended travel and that you have the entire process finalized 1 month before your intended travel or 1 month prior to the registration deadline.

As is the nature of international work, plans can change, or your intended location can become destabilized by political or natural disasters at the last minute. If this happens, please let us know as soon as possible so that we can work with you.

  1. Make an appointment and speak with the International Programs Office. They will give you a Faculty Advisor Approval Form and the link to IFE Site locations descriptions. Fill out the Faculty Advisor approval form and review the locations on the list prior to speaking with your faculty advisor.
  2. After you have filled out the document and looked over the list of IFE placement sites, make an appointment with your faculty advisor and review the Faculty Advisor Form with them and have them sign the document, once they have verified the information. This is also the best time to go over with them some of the site locations that are of interest to you.
  3. Please make sure to make an appointment and stop by the International Programs Office afterwards to turn in your Faculty Advisor Approval Form and discuss your potential site placement. At this point, the academic contracts and IFE Scholarship document will be emailed to you so that you can begin to fill them out. You will also receive the link for all required International Travel Documentation and CISI Insurance Purchase, which will be completed and submitted fully online.
    1. CISI is the international medical and evacuation insurance that is required by the University for all students traveling overseas for USF-related travel. The insurance will be billed at $50 per month to the student’s Oasis account.
  4. Once you and your faculty advisor both agree, contact the potential preceptor on the IFE placement list and begin to discuss with them the possibility of doing an IFE with them and begin discussing your potential plans.
  5. Once they agree, you will fill out your academic contracts for PHC 6945 provided by the International Programs Office and begin filling out the online travel documentation.
  6. Once all of the documentation has been successfully submitted and reviewed, a permit request will be sent to Academic Affairs. Once this has been issued, and only once this has been issued, make sure to change your credits on Canvas for the IFE course (PHC 6945) from 1 to 6. After you have registered and modified the credits make sure to email the International Programs Office and make them aware of the registration and course credit change to 6 so that your scholarship can be processed.
  7. Please be aware that once you have registered, you will be added to the Canvas course online. All work should be submitted to that Canvas Course on time. If you have any problems with access, please make sure that you discuss these difficulties with your Faculty Advisor so that you can devise a proper course of action.

Steps to applying to a new site location (non-high risk travel)

If your proposed IFE location is not on the list and you have found your own site, please make sure to speak with faculty advisor first. If they are OK with it and the country does not appear on the department of state travel warning, please have them write an email to the International Programs Office because there will be an additional step in order to approve a new site. This additional step is the Preceptor Field Guide which will be provided to you by the International Programs Office. Please make sure to add additional time for this process.

Steps to applying to a High Risk Destination

If you are proposing travel to a high risk destination (high risk as defined by the department of state and USF Education Abroad), please add an additional month to the process time because additional steps will have to be taken before any contracts are filled out. For High Risk Travel:

  1. You will need to provide the International Programs Office a statement from the faculty advisor or Department Chair stating that the educational outcomes of this specific experience outweigh the risks of that specific travel and that this experience cannot be undertaken in a different location.
  2. You will also need to make sure that you fill out the High Risk Travel Document. When filling out the document make sure to be detailed and do not leave questions blank or answer them with one-word answers. The more detail you provide, the more that the review panel will know that you have done proper research into the risks of that specific travel and you have thought of ways to mitigate such risks.
  3. This document will then be reviewed by a panel of professors across USF Health that have experience in that country or region of the world. If they approve, then you will receive an email or letter stating the approval for that travel. At this point, you can begin with the new site location paperwork. Once the new site location paperwork is done, then you can continue the process of filling out your contracts and online documentation.
  4. If the proposal is not approved by the panel, then you will receive that notification along with the reason why it was not approved and you will be encouraged to select a new site.