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Office of Vice President and
Chief of Staff
Florida Gulf Coast University
10501 FGCU Blvd S.
Fort Myers, FL. 33965-6565

Phone: (239) 590-1006
Fax:     (239) 590-1066

Press Release


FGCU Students, Faculty Travel to Dominican Republic; Part of Service Learning Project

FORT MYERS, FL - Students and faculty from Florida Gulf Coast University travel to the Dominican Republic to help economically disadvantaged children and community members April 28 through May 5.

Working with a Dominican non-profit organization (Acción Callejera) and a local elementary school, FGCU students have contributed to the crucial work of building safe housing for the poor, teaching environmental awareness to elementary school children and establishing literacy programs for children that work in the streets, while experiencing life in a developing nation first hand for the past seven years. This year the project's theme focuses on anger management and empowerment.

The students volunteer for the trip as part of their Service Learning project at FGCU. Service Learning is a program that provides opportunities for community involvement.

Participants have been traveling during spring break to the Dominican Republic under the leadership of associate professor Ingrid Martinez-Rico and Craig Heller. A tragic car accident left Martinez-Rico unable to participate in this year's service learning project. FGCU students decided to postpone the project until the end of the school year in honor of Martinez-Rico. The project is now under the leadership of associate professor Richard Coughlin and Marta Ramos, instructor for the College of Arts and Sciences, and FGCU alumna Lisi Lau. FGCU student participants are Chris Brown, Lourdes Campusano, Danika Cornelius, Joelle Robles, Ilianet Suarez and Francine Swadley.

For more information contact Joelle Robles at

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