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  • Locations: Havana, Cuba
  • Program Terms: Summer
  • Cost Estimate: Summer
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Minimum GPA: 3 Click here for a definition of this term Language(s) of Instruction: English
Click here for a definition of this term Class Status: Graduate Open to non-GW students: Yes
Program Description:

Cuba: Celebrating Cuban Heritage and Fostering

Community-based Tourism in Havana 

Is this program for me?Cuba1

The George Washington University “International Consulting Experience” is offered every summer as a School of Business Short-term Study Away Program. This experience provides graduate students an opportunity to gain hands-on experience by working with a tourism client on an actual consulting project. Student teams conduct thorough background research (3-4 weeks in advance of the field experience), prepare a preliminary report, conduct fieldwork (2 weeks on-site) and prepare a set of strategic recommendations for the client.  
In the weeks preceding the fieldwork, George Washington University students will collaborate with the students from a local university on the preliminary report, which includes their research findings, advance hypotheses and fieldwork methodology plans around data collection and reporting.
Based on the scope of the particular assignment, during the two-week fieldwork period the teams conduct stakeholder interviews, site visits, assessments of existing and potential tourist attractions and tourist facilities.
At the end of the fieldwork period, the teams present their recommendations to the client and upon returning from the destination, produce a detailed report, which they send to the client for wider distribution.
Past projects have focused on Jamaica (2000), Bulgaria (2001), Dominica (2002), Honduras (2003), Morocco (2004), Panama (2005), Montenegro (2006), Istanbul, Turkey (2007), Lake Atitlan, Guatemala (2008), Puerto Plata, Dominican Republic (2009), Douro Valley, Portugal (2010), Cusco, Peru (2011), Belize (2012), Campeche, Mexico (2013), Bilbao, Basque Country, Spain (2014) Myanmar (2015) and San Luis Potosi, Mexico (2016).
In 2005 UN WTO adopted the program as a model for its TedQual Volunteers Program.
Students will be registered in both TSTD 6214 "Consulting Processes" and TSTD 6282 "International Experiences" for this study away course. The descriptions for each of these courses are outlined below:

TSTD 6282 "International Experiences"
This course involves travel to a foreign country to conduct an actual consulting project. It involves both directed research and consulting activities. The course is based on a group experiential learning approach, which trains students to mobilize and apply existing skills and knowledge as well as acquire and utilize new ones in an efficient manner. GW students will work in cooperation with faculty and students from the Havana University.

TSTD 6214 "Consulting Processes"
This course involves an examination of the consultant-client relationship as well as introduction to the wide array of approaches and tools available for application in different consultative scenarios.
While being exposed to key theories and best practices from the consulting world, students will begin preparation for an actual consulting experience. They will work in teams to define the scope of their consulting task, conduct an in-depth analysis of the strategic problem at hand, identify preliminary opportunities for actionable resolutions and prepare an effective plan for the two-week consulting fieldwork.

Course Objectives

  • Provide theoretical and practical frameworks for issue identification, practice in prioritizing issues and problems/opportunities to be tackled in a consulting assignment.
  • Experience the application of the management consulting process to the project undertaken for the client organizations.
  • Build skills in using primary and secondary sources of information, accessing industry data and using specialized sources of information, conducting strategic analysis and designating key tasks as part of the preparation for a fieldwork assignment.
  • Develop professional skills in organizing and conducting field work on a wide range of tourism topics such as planning, management, product development, and marketing. 

Academic Credit

6 credits are awarded for successful completion of TSTD 6282/TSTD 6214.*
*Students will be registered by the G&EE office in both TSTD 6214 and TSTD 6282.
This program fulfills general elective credit for Master's and MBA programs. This program has also been pre-approved to fulfill elective credit within the following MBA Concentrations: Global Management, Consulting, and Tourism. Students may petition to have study away courses count towards other MBA concentrations or Master's degree requirements by speaking with their academic advisor.

Calendar Cuba4

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Application guidelines:
1. Students must arrange for a short personal interview with the faculty director.
2. Ideally, student should have general knowledge of the travel and tourism industry.

On Campus Dates:
Mondays and Wednesdays
Time: 6:10-8:40pm
Dates: 5/15 - 6/7 and 7/3 - 7/5

Overseas Dates:
June 18 – July 1, 2017


Graduate students only.

GW Professors

Seleni Matus ( - Executive Director, International Institute of Tourism Studies

Co-teaching the TSTD 6282 "International Experience" course in Cuba is Dr. Salvador Anton Clave, Senior Research Scholar, GW International Institute of Tourism Studies. 


Click HERE for program cost estimates.

Info Session

View a live recording of the information session here.

Additional Information

Draft Syllabus TSTD 6214 – Consulting Processes_Cuba_Matus_Sum17.pdf

Draft Syllabus TSTD 6282 -International Experiences_Cuba_Matus_Sum17.pdf

Overview of International Consulting Experience 2017.pdf

DRAFT Itinerary_Cuba_Matus_Sum17.pdf


This program is administered by Global & Experiential Education in The George Washington University School of Business.

Feel free to contact us at 202.994.0767 or with your questions.

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