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Studies in Harm Reduction


Program Details 

Switzerland offers a rich environment in which to examine and explore the meaning and use of harm reduction. Participants will examine the harm reduction model in a multinational, cross-disciplinary context, considering applications to a variety of social and health concerns and identifing barriers to and facilitators of the development and use of harm reduction strategies.

Selection Criteria:

  • 18 years of age or older
  • high school graduate
  • reads, speaks, and understands English
  • Willing to abide by health and admission requirements in the host country and partnering agencies/organizations


  • Switzerland

Program Dates:

May 1st - May 14th, 2024


Cost: $3,399 (Airfare NOT Included)

Suggested Payment Schedule (This does not need to be followed exactly. It is a guide so you do not have to pay so much at the end, but you can pay as much or as little as you want so long as the trip is paid in full before you leave):

  • Deposit: $500
  • November 1: $500
  • December 1: $500
  • January 1: $500
  • February 1: $500
  • March 1: $500
  • April 1: $399

Deposit: $500

Deposit is due 72 hours after registration. If not paid in that timeframe, you may be dropped from your trip.

Payments can now be made online! Visit this website for instructions on how to pay your deposit and future payments online. Charges should show on your account within 24-48 hours after registration. If you want to pay with cash or check, please pay at the Hurst Center for Lifelong Learning.

Includes: insurance, tuition, room and board, local transportation abroad, excursions, and some meals.

Not included: airfare, passport, incidentals, excess baggage costs, any unscheduled travel, and some meals.


  • Itinerary is subject to change. Make sure to attend all pre-departure meetings!
  • April 20th: pre-departure meeting
  • April 27th: pre-departure meeting
  • April 30th: Depart from SLC
  • May 1st: Arrive in Zurich, travel to Bern, and dinner together
  • May 2nd:Swiss national history museum and tour of parliament.
  • May 3rd: Travel to Basel, visit to urban HAT, visit to consumption room, return to Bern
  • May 4th: Free day
  • May 5th: Free day
  • May 6th: Hindlebank prison, travel to Thun for visit to rural HAT, return to Bern
  • May 7th: Travel to Lausanne. Swiss professional preparation in human services, HAT in French-speaking Switzerland
  • May 8th: Realta prison, HAT in corrections
  • May 9th: Travel to Geneva, advanced harm reduction and harm reduction history, visit UN/UNAIDS/WHO
  • May 10th: Harm reduction street outreach
  • May 11th: Free day
  • May 12th: Free day
  • May 13th: Travel to Zurich, harm reduction and sex work
  • May 14th: Depart from Zurich, Arrive in SLC

Academic Courses

Students who participate in this study abroad program will be able to register for up to three (3) semester credits through Weber State University in:

  • SW 4850 OR
  • MSW 6850

Program Directors

Dr. Mark Bigler Professor in the Department of Social Work and Gerontology

Trip Cancellations

If Weber State cancels a trip for any reason, all participants will be refunded 100% of funds paid to the school. If a participant withdraws from the program for any reason, they are subject to the refund policy found on the first page of the application.  Deposits are always non-refundable, unless the program is canceled by Weber State.  No refunds will be issued 30 days prior to program start date. 

Refunds will NOT be given to students due to COVID-19 concerns. Before programs were canceled in 2020, every student was given the option to withdraw from programs without penalty due to COVID-19. This year students are applying, cognizant of the pandemic. Weber State will not intentionally place students into high risk situations. We will work together with Program Leaders and Departments on canceling should the destination demonstrate increased risks, be they from COVID or any other concern. As such, students must abide by the standard refund policy.

If you have any questions, feel free to contact the Study Abroad Office at (801) 626-8715.