Havana Quick Facts
Language of Instruction
Fields of Study
Cuban history, U.S. - Cuban relations, Urban and Rural Sociology, Literature, Afro-Cuban culture, Art History, Cuban or Latin American Cinema, Latin American Studies and Women's Studies.
University of Havana
Sarah Lawrence College
House with program participants
Fall semester: Late August to late December.
Spring semester: Late January to early May.
Miguel Tinker Salas
Cuba's unique blend of cultures from Africa, Europe and Asia, coupled with its unparalleled economic and political history, serve to create a fascinating and complex environment in which to study and live.
The Sarah Lawrence College program is based in Havana, a city of 2.1 million people and located on the northwest coast of the island. It is a lively city that is full of contrasts and can be explored easily by foot or public transportation. The University of Havana serves as the host institution to the program. The university was established in 1728, is the largest and oldest university in Cuba, and its programs and research centers enjoy a fine international reputation. The university's current enrollment is approximately 6,000 students.
Please note that Sarah Lawrence College has an early application deadline of February 1 for the fall program.
Students take four courses - mandatory Spanish, two electives and a core seminar course (1.0 Pomona credit each). The latter is conducted through Centro de Estudios Demograficos (CEDEM), a unique research center at the University of Havana. Designed exclusively for Sarah Lawrence in Cuba students, the course examines gender, health, education and sustainable development throughout Cuban society. You will study theoretical as well as practical perspectives on life in Cuba.
The program offers a wide range of courses in the humanities, social sciences, and the arts, all of which are taught by recognized experts in their fields. All classes are taught in Spanish and you should expect most of your classmates to be Cuban.
Students on this program follow the same curriculum as Cuban students do, subject to the same standards and requirements. Course work in the humanities, literature and social sciences may be taken at the University of Havana. Film history is taken at the Unviersity of Havana or at the Fundacion del Nuevo Cine Lantinoamericano, and the performing and visual arts at the Instituto Superior de Arte (ISA).
Students may not take the core course on a P/NC basis.
Students are housed in two large homes in the Vedado district of Havana in either double or triple air-conditioned rooms with attached bathrooms and a shared refrigerator. Linens and towels are refreshed weekly. Breakfast and dinner are prepared every day by the kitchen staff. Pomona provides a lunch allowance.
Number of Students
3 Pomona students; total program enrollment approximately 20 per semester.
Four semesters of college-level Spanish or the equivalent. 10.0 GPA required. A college-level course with Latin American content is highly recommended. Students who have not taken such a course should contact a member of the Latin American Studies faculty to develop a pre-departure reading list. This list should be submitted with the study abroad application.