Students studying abroad

HEILA: Marquette’s International Service Learning Experience

The Service Learning Landscape Health, Environment and Infrastructure in Latin America (HEILA) initiative is an exciting opportunity for students to perform two-week service learning projects in countries such as El Salvador, Guatemala and Honduras while learning about the region’s history, culture and politics. Students also explore their profession and its relationship to civil society in the United States and abroad.

To see an environmental engineering service learning project, right click on the link below and choose save target.

The class

The initiative includes Health, Environment and Infrastructure in Latin America (course number CEEN 4740) in which students learn about the history, culture and politics of Latin America.In addition, students explore the importance of their profession in terms of international development. For example, Civil, Construction and Environmental engineers explore the importance of clean drinking water, sanitation and transportation for society. Similarly, physical therapists discuss the importance of health care, the definition of disability and cultural issues relating to health care. And international affairs students explore models of international development. The experience is open to all students at Marquette.


Dr. Michael Duffey
Dr. Duffey is associate professor of theology specializing in theological ethics with particular attention to issues of justice and peace. He is the author of Be Blessed in What You Do: The Unity of Christian Ethics and Spirituality (Paulist, 1988) and Peacemaking Christians: The Future of Just War, Pacifism, and Nonviolent Resistance (Sheed and Ward, 1995).

Dr. Lance Grahn
Dr. Grahn is chair of the History Department and specializes in Latin-American history, including the political economy of colonial Colombia and how it shaped the body politic there, as well as in the ethnohistory of Latin America. He is the author of Let My People Live: Faith and Struggle in Central America (Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans, 1988).

Dr. Daniel Zitomer
Dr. Zitomer is associate professor of Civil, Construction and Environmental engineering and specializes in environmental engineering, water treatment, wastewater treatment and public health. Zitomer has presented lectures on water and wastewater treatment at the University of Central America and has traveled extensively in El Salvador.

Michelle Schuh
Schuh is assistant clinical professor of physical therapy. She has traveled extensively in El Salvador visiting public health facilities and meeting with physical therapy officials. Schuh has planned public health service projects in El Salvador and is familiar with Salvadoran community health care.

Previous projects

HEILA includes a service learning component in conjunction with the course. Through HEILA, students and faculty have the opportunity to participate in 12-day service trips to El Salvador, Guatemala and other location or perform service learning in Milwaukee’s Latino community.

How you can participate

Anyone can apply to participate in HEILA. The cost to students traveling is approximately $1,600. This cost includes airfare, housing, some meals and other miscellaneous costs. Possible costs such as passport acquisition, international student ID card insurance and required travelers immunization are not included in the $1,600 estimate. It should be noted that many health insurance plans cover most of the immunization cost. Some students have raised all or part of the funds from private donors such as employers and churches.


If you are interested in the Marquette International Experience in Latin America or would like additional information, e-mail or call (414) 288-5733. Applications for the program are available upon request.


Contact us

College of Engineering
1515 W. Wisconsin Ave.
Milwaukee, WI 53233

Dean's office: (414) 288-6591
Prospective students: (414) 288-7302
Academic Advising Center: (414) 288-6000
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