You only need to submit this information once, not each time you log in. The only time you will need to resubmit this information is if it changes.
FUTUREVETS STUDENT PORTAL
July 31 - August 14, 2021
STEP 1: PASSPORT SCAN
In order to book your international flights, we must have a scan of your passport photo page. Check your passport is valid through August 14, 2021, and upload a scan as soon as you can.
Apply for or renew your passport if you need to. Remember, passports can take up to four weeks to arrive.
Do you have a foreign passport? If you are a citizen of any country other than the USA and require a visa to enter the USA, please be sure to upload a scan of this document in the “OTHER” section below.
STEP 2: PERSONAL INFORMATION
Again, you only need to submit this information in full once. But, if you need to update anything, you can resubmit your information anytime.
STEP 3: MEDICAL HISTORY
If you require medical treatment during your time at FutureVets, and you have not fully completed this medical information and insurance form, the hospital may delay your treatment until they receive this information.
Please be sure to complete ALL of this form, including insurance information.
STEP 4: IMMUNIZATION RECORD
Please ensure this document is from your doctor or travel clinic and clearly states your name. Documentation of immunizations and tests required to access the clinical facilities in Costa Rica must be uploaded no later than March 30, 2021.
STEP 5: DOMESTIC TRAVEL
Once you receive our international flight information, please plan your domestic travel and submit the information below. We need this information to check that you will arrive on time and so that we can track your flight on departure day.
All students are required to submit a medical release form. If you have not already returned a completed form to our Admissions Team you may do so here.
Due no later than December 30, 2020
❒ Upload a scan of your passport photo page
❒ Complete required forms in the portal (personal information, medical release, and medical history)
Due no later than March 30, 2021
❒ Upload a copy of your immunization record to the portal
Due no later than April 30, 2021
❒ Book your domestic travel to and from the designated departure airport within the designated arrival and departure windows
❒ Submit your domestic flight details in the portal
❒ Decide on a way you and your family will keep in touch (Skype, Whatsapp, FaceTime, research international phone plans, etc.)
❒ Decide with your family how you will pay for personal expenses while traveling
❒ Call your bank or credit card company to notify them of upcoming travel
CODE OF CONDUCT AGREEMENT
As a reminder, you signed the following Code of Conduct Agreement as part of your enrollment:
As a student enrolled in FutureVets, I agree to the following expectations with regard to safety and conduct.
I agree to complete to the best of my ability all aspects of the FutureVets Program and successfully participate both as an individual and a representative of The National Leadership Academies. I agree to conduct myself in such a way that supports my own learning, and supports the learning of my peers, the teaching of physicians, and the guidance of the chaperones.
FutureVets is an alcohol-, smoking-, and substance-abuse-free experience. I agree to refrain from use of these substances as well as any illegal substances.
I agree to not engage in any behaviors that will put my health or life at risk, such as but not limited to departing from the scheduled itinerary and tour, entering restricted areas of host medical school and medical centers, entering financial agreements with locals, inviting strangers into the program or hotel, and providing locals with personal information such as passport information, credit/debit card information (other than secure bank/vendor), home addresses, and phone numbers.
I agree to remain in the assigned hotel or dormitory room as indicated by staff. Any changes or breach of this security precaution could lead to expulsion from the program.
I agree to maintain all required dress code standards as set forth by FutureDocs Abroad staff or requested by participating medical school/medical center policies. I also agree to remain with my assigned mentors, physicians, or other assigned staff at all site visit locations.
I agree to abide by the host university or institution’s standards and requirements.
I understand not complying with the above-mentioned expectations may result in dismissal from the program and return to the United States at my and my parent’s or guardian’s expense.
I agree to make FutureVets administrators and staff aware as soon as possible of any difficulties I may encounter regarding my health, safety, finances, or any other issue that I consider serious or should be disclosed.
[Student First and Last Name] to Attend FutureVets’ Program in Coronado, Costa Rica
[Your city/town, state] – [Student First and Last Name], a [Grade] at [Your High School] will attend a summer program in Coronado, Costa Rica from July 31 – August 14, 2021.
FutureVets is an exclusive, once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for qualified high school students to experience real veterinary medicine. The purpose of this internship is to honor, inspire, motivate, and direct the top students in the country who aspire to have careers in the veterinary field, to stay true to their dream and, after the program, to provide a path, plan, and resources to help them reach their goal.
“[Insert a great quote from you about what you’re most excited for during your time in Costa Rica. Perhaps about what you’re going to learn and/or experience.],” says [Student First Name].
During the two-week program, [Student First Name] will join students from across the United States and spend time observing surgeries taking place in the operating room, with the surgeon explaining the procedure as it’s being performed.
[Student First Name] will be in the gross anatomy lab with an anatomy professor, learning about the anatomy and proper dissection of cadavers. They will practice dissection techniques and view necropsies.
And [he/she/they] will also shadow veterinarians as they treat, diagnose, and rehabilitate small and large animals (oftentimes in their natural habit), participate in rotations, clinical lab research, and nutrition.
FutureVets is a program of The National Leadership Academies, which was founded on the belief that strong emotional intelligence is the cornerstone of student success and is committed to supporting students in their development. The National Leadership Academies also recognizes that prospective talent must be identified at the earliest possible age and help must be given to these students to acquire the necessary experience and skills to take them to the doorstep of vital careers as leaders and in the fields of medicine and the sciences.
For more information please visit www.thenationalleadershipacademies.com or call (888) 986-6563.
GETTING OR RENEWING YOUR PASSPORT
Your passport will need to be valid through August 14, 2021, in order to enter Costa Rica.
If your passport is VALID through August 14, 2021, take a picture of the photo page of your passport and send it to our Admissions Team immediately.
If your passport is NOT VALID through August 14, 2021, visit the State Department website for instructions on how to renew your passport.
If you DO NOT HAVE A PASSPORT visit the State Department website for instructions on how to apply for a passport.
NOTE: The Department of State is experiencing significant delays so please make sure you apply IMMEDIATELY. All students are required to have a valid Passport Book to travel to Costa Rica. Passport cards are not valid for International travel to Costa Rica.
Passports must be full passport books.
Also, confirm that you have signed your passport on the page opposite the photo page. A U.S. passport is only valid once it is signed! If you have NOT signed your passport, use a non-ballpoint pen and make sure the ink is dry before closing your passport.
We recommend that you add your contact information in pencil on the Personal Data and Contact Information page. If you lose your passport, this will give you the best chance of getting it back.
DO YOU HAVE A FOREIGN PASSPORT?
If you are a citizen of any country other than the USA, and require a visa to enter the USA, please be sure to upload a scan of this document along with a scan of your passport photo page.
It is REQUIRED that all students be up-to-date on all routine immunizations stated by the CDC website, including:
❒ Hepatitis A
❒ Hepatitis B
❒ Varicella (Chickenpox)
You will need to upload a record from your physician that shows you are up-to-date with the above immunizations.
To access the clinical facilities in Costa Rica, students are also REQUIRED to have:
❒ a Typhoid vaccination
❒ a Rabies immunization
Please schedule a visit with your physician’s office or a travel clinic to obtain these immunizations and be sure to request a copy of these immunization records as well as your routine immunization record, as you are required to upload a copy to the portal no later than March 30, 2021.
Departure Airport: Miami International Airport (MIA)
Departure Time: 12:05 PM EDT, Sunday, August 1
Flight Numbers: American Airlines AA531
Route: Miami (MIA, San Jose (SJO)
Arrival Airport: Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO)
Arrival Time: 12:56 PM EDT, Sunday, August 1
When to Arrive at Miami International: Saturday July 31, 2021 between 3:00 PM and 7:00 PM EDT
Our flight to Costa Rica is scheduled to depart from Miami International Airport (MIA), at 12:05 PM local time. You must book your flight from your home airport to MIA to arrive between 3:00 PM and 7:00 PM EDT on Saturday, July 31.
Due to our schedule of events in Costa Rica, we will be staying at the Sheraton Miami Airport Hotel on the night of July 31 in order to prepare the group ahead of our long day of travel on Sunday, August 1.
We will spend the first night getting to know each other. On the morning of August 1, we will hold our group orientation, then at noon will fly directly to San Jose, Costa Rica. From there we will travel to Cahuita, on the Caribbean coast (3-4 hour drive) for our first set of rotations.
When considering flights, take into account any change in time zones and that MIA is in the Eastern Daylight Time Zone (EDT). The arrival time into MIA of the flight you are considering will be listed in the local time zone.
Arriving in the specified window on July 31 will give you a minimum of 2 hours before our dinner at the Sheraton Miami Airport Hotel. This arrival time frame also takes into account the time needed to collect your luggage from your domestic flight at the baggage claim and to ride with the group from the airport to the hotel.
Chaperones will be located in arrivals by baggage claim #15 in the Central Terminal ready to guide you to the hotel shuttle, where the group will stay prior to our international flight on the morning of August 1.
Special notes to remember if you are taking a domestic flight into our international departure airport:
- The night before you travel, check online flight departures for any delays on your domestic travel from your hometown.
- The morning of your flight, check again for any delays. Apps like flighttracker.com can be used to check delays, or you can type your airline and flight number into Google.
- If you have any issues at all with your travel plans or disruptions, please call us immediately so we can put the appropriate measures in place ahead of time.
- Once you arrive at MIA remember to pick up all of your luggage at baggage claim before heading to the group meeting point! Your baggage will NOT automatically check through.
Group meeting point at MIA:
After you have picked up your luggage from baggage claim, go directly to baggage claim number 15 in the Central Terminal where our FutureVets Chaperones will be located.
FutureVets chaperones will be stationed at this location beginning at 2pm. Please check in with a chaperone for further instructions.
What to do if you can’t find your group meeting point:
Please call the group leader who will be able to direct you to the meeting point. The phone number will be released closer to the take-off date.
AIRLINE BAGGAGE POLICY
Please visit the American airlines website for baggage policies.
NOTE: All students will be traveling in an economy class. American Airlines checked baggage is not included in the airline fare. Checked baggage fees and any domestic airline baggage fees are not included in the program tuition cost and are the responsibility of the student. Be sure to have a plan for how you intend to pay for any checked luggage at the American Airlines check-in counters in the U.S. and in Costa Rica. Check-in desks only accept payment for baggage via credit or debit card so please keep this in mind.
Tips on packing your bags:
- Keep valuable items with you in your carry-on. Do not pack anything of true monetary or personal value in your checked baggage.
- Any laptops, tablets, or electronic items should always be packed in your carry-on bag.
- Take photos of your hold luggage and contents. This is proof of your belongings and can be used to track your bag if it is lost in transit.
- Clearly label and lock your bag.
- Use trackable luggage tags.
Unaccompanied Minor status is required by some airlines for passengers under the age of 15, and some airlines have other policies and age cut-offs. There is an additional fee for this service. When you book your flights to and from your hometown, be sure to check with your individual airline on their Unaccompanied Minor policy. If your airline requires this, you will be prompted to give information on the name, address and telephone number of the staff member who will be picking you up at the airport.
Please contact the Admissions team before May 31, 2021 if you arrange Unaccompanied Minor status. We will be able to give you the name of the staff member who will be picking you up when the airline reservation is made.
This name may need to be updated up to 2 weeks prior to travel with a confirmed chaperone who will be assigned to that terminal specifically. You MUST report to the airline this updated name in order for the airline to release you to the FutureVets chaperone. Failure to do so will result in the airline’s refusal to release you into the care of the FutureVets chaperone.
NOTE: Unaccompanied Minor status cannot be purchased for flights with connections.
Departure Airport: Juan Santamaría International Airport (SJO)
Departure Time: 7:02 AM, Saturday, August 14
Flight Numbers: American Airlines AA1204
Route: San Jose (SJO), Miami (MIA)
Arrival Airport: Miami International Airport (MIA)
Arrival Time: 12:00 PM EDT, Saturday, August 14
When to Depart from MIA Airport: Saturday August 14 between 3:00 PM and 8:00 PM EDT
Our inbound flight from San Jose, is scheduled to arrive at MIA, Miami on Saturday, August 14 at 12:00 PM. You must book your domestic flight back to your hometown to depart between 3:00 PM and 8:00 PM from Miami International Airport (MIA).
This suggested domestic departure time has been carefully planned, taking into consideration time to clear immigration upon your return to the U.S., collect your luggage from baggage claim and clear customs.
Remember, once you have cleared customs you will also need to make your way to Departures on level 2, and follow signs to the airline check-in for your domestic flight back to your hometown.
Departing after 3 PM EDT will give you a minimum of 3 hours before your scheduled domestic departure. This is to allow for any delays that may subsequently result in you missing your domestic flight and expected time it will take to get through immigration, baggage claim, and customs upon return into the U.S. and to re-check your bag.
BOOKING YOUR DOMESTIC FLIGHT
To help with booking your flights to and from your hometown, FutureVets has partnered with StudentUniverse to assist our students in finding the most convenient routes and affordable prices. StudentUniverse is the world’s leading travel booking service for students and youth.
Once you have confirmed your domestic travel, be sure to enter the details in the portal.
Upon arrival into Miami on July 31, we will be staying at the Sheraton Miami Airport Hotel, prior to our departure to Costa Rica on August 1.
Students will be staying at two different hotels over the two week program in Costa Rica.
August 1 – 3, 2020 – The Goddess Garden Hotel
The address is: Playa Grande, Cahuita, Costa Rica
August 3 – 14, 2020 – Hotel Bougainvillea
The address is: Hotel Bougainvillea, Contiguo a la Escuela, Santo Tomás, Heredia, Santo Domingo, 40302, Costa Rica
Students will be assigned to same-gender rooms.
All students will receive a hotel key. You must keep this on you at all times in order to get access to your hotel room. The hotel reception is staffed 24 hours a day. Should you need a key reprint you will need to provide a valid ID to receive a new card. With this in mind, please ensure you carry a safety wallet to hold your important items and key card at all times.
The hotel has a concierge desk available for any questions you may have. Remember, our own team of experienced chaperones will also be available 24/7 should you need any assistance.
There is a laundry service available at the hotel for a fee. Pricing is available in the local currency (colones) at the link below. Laundry bags and laundry forms will be provided at the front desk. Students should fill out a laundry request form and provide the form with their laundry in a laundry bag to Reception. The fee for laundry services is chargeable to the individual.
FutureVets attendees will receive a 15% discount off laundry prices stated on the attached document.
Outdoor pool available during specified free periods and when a chaperone is available.
All students have access to the free WiFi within the hotel.
The hotel is fully air-conditioned. However, please note that only the clinical locations where rotations take place within clinics will be air-conditioned. External field visits and rotations will likely take place outside. Note that the weather in Costa Rica is extremely hot and humid through the summer months. You will be stepping outside between rotations and during external activity days. Be sure to stay hydrated with plenty of water throughout the day. Look out for additional items on the packing list to keep cool.
NOTE: Hairdryers and basic washing goods are provided in the hotel. However, be sure to bring an adequate supply of your own toiletries including but not limited to, shampoo, conditioner, toothpaste, and deodorant.
Breakfast and dinner will be provided at the hotel. A selection of food will be available including authentic Costa Rican fare, and a variety of American classics. Lunch will be provided at the campus cafeteria during Monday – Friday rotations. Meals will also be provided on off-campus activity days and will include BBQ’s and picnic-style lunches.
Be sure you have updated any special dietary requirements on the portal so we can be sure to prep the chef ahead of your arrival.
Snacks are available for purchase on campus, and at the hotel. Cafes are also located in all of the clinical locations. Trips to the local convenience store can also be arranged with the chaperones upon request.
IMPORTANT: Tap water in Costa Rica is drinkable and, in many areas of the country, quite good. However, if you have a sensitive stomach, it’s recommended to refrain from drinking the tap water. San Jose is a modern city so you will be able to purchase bottled water everywhere and chaperones will be available 24/7 to assist students if needed.
CURRENCY AND PAYMENT OPTIONS
FutureVets includes all program costs, international airfare, accommodations, local in-country transportation, and meals, including breakfast, lunch, and dinner. Students may want to bring pocket money for their own personal expenses, shopping, personal care items, souvenirs, snacks, etc. ($250-$300 should be more than adequate).
In advance of your trip to Costa Rica, we recommend you have a discussion with your parents on how you will pay for personal expenses while abroad. You may choose to carry a credit card, withdraw Costa Rican colones using an ATM card, bring U.S. dollars to exchange in Costa Rica, or some combination of these options.
Visa and MasterCard are widely accepted in Costa Rica; Discover and American Express are not accepted as widely. If you plan to use a credit card while in Costa Rica, your parents should ask their credit card company about their international transaction fees and alert them of your international travel plans beforehand to avoid security holds. Check the expiry date on your credit/debit cards and make a separate note in a safe place of their numbers and the service number on the back of the card.
It is also advisable to carry some small denominations of local currency for small purchases. Most purchases have to be over a certain amount in order to pay by card.
Costa Rica’s currency is the colón. Currently, 1000 Costa Rican colones equal about 1.65 USD. U.S. bank ATM cards can also be used in Costa Rica to obtain colones. Students should check with their bank about foreign ATM transaction and conversion fees. To avoid additional fees, students may bring U.S. dollars that can be exchanged for colones in transactions that the FutureVets staff can facilitate on-site for students.
TRAVEL TO AND FROM COSTA RICA
Ultimately, comfort plays a large part in making flights pleasurable. Always wear comfortable clothes, and this includes your travel shoes.
- Wear layers – You will need pieces that you can easily take off or put on to help you combat the varying temperatures you encounter throughout your journey.
- Wear something that you can keep on for the next 12 hours – travel time to Costa Rica and to our first rotation destination once in country will be at least 7 hours.
- Wear clothes that don’t restrict you.
- Wear natural, breathable fabrics.
- Wear socks and comfortable footwear.
ROTATIONS AT CLINICAL FACILITIES (10 DAYS)
Students will be asked to wear scrubs and a white lab coat for all sessions at the veterinary facilities.
- Scrubs can be any color/pattern
- Lab jackets are required for most rotations
- Students will be on their feet for long periods while on rotations, so comfortable shoes are recommended. All shoes worn on rotations must be closed-toed. Waterproof walking shoes or boots are advisable during rotations as some rotations are outdoors in rural areas.
A full day is planned to explore the fascinating city of San Jose.
- Wear comfortable/breathable casual clothes
- Wear comfortable shoes (sneakers are a great option)
- Bring a sunhat
- Wear sunscreen
You are welcome to kick back and relax in whatever clothes are most comfortable for you. If you plan on spending time at the pool, be sure to pack a swimsuit.
This will be your last impression when saying goodbye to your Costa Rican hosts. Dress to impress with a business casual outfit.
Ladies: Plan on wearing dresses/trousers/knee-length skirts and shirts with a collar or blouses, and comfortable shoes
Gentlemen: Wear trousers/khakis and collared shirts, and comfortable shoes
NOTE: Absolutely NO athletic wear, NO jeans, and NO shorts
Remember, laundry facilities are available for students at the hotel. Please refer to the Laundry section under ‘Overnight Accommodations’ for more details.
The voltage supplied in electrical outlets as well as the outlet type varies in countries throughout the world, so in order to charge your devices when you visit another country, it’s important to check the voltage and outlet requirements of your host country.
In Costa Rica, the standard voltage is 120 volts, which is the same as U.S. wall outlets. The power outlet types in Costa Rica are also the same as in the U.S. You will find both the 2-prong and 3-prong outlets you’re familiar with from the U.S. in Costa Rica. However, if you are packing any electronics with a 3-prong plug, you may want to pack a 3-to-2 prong adapter in case 3-prong plugs are not available.
INTERNATIONAL CELL PHONE USE
In all likelihood, your cell phone plan does not accommodate international texting, calling, or data use. If you use these functions while traveling abroad, you will likely rack up a huge roaming bill – possibly in the thousands of dollars. To ensure this doesn’t happen, be sure to turn off your cellular data and put your phone in airplane mode before we depart on our international flight. You will still be able to connect to wifi where available while on airplane mode. It’s safest to leave your phone in airplane mode for the duration of the trip, and only use wifi for internet access, in order to avoid a surprise phone bill when you get back.
Shared below is a basic packing list for FutureVets. Keep in mind this list is intended to provide basic guidance for essentials. This does not necessarily include every item that you may personally require.
A few things to keep in mind as you pack:
- Very important: Do not bring any fruit, dairy or meat and absolutely no living or dried agriculture objects as you cannot travel into another country with these. The same applies for your return trip to the U.S.
- Clearly label all of your luggage so it is easily identifiable; remember, many bags look alike!
- The hotel does not provide personal toiletries such as shampoo, conditioner, and shower soap/body wash, so these are included in the packing list below.
- As you pack, keep in mind that there are laundry facilities available at the hotel for an additional fee.
- We recommend you pack any over-the-counter personal hygiene items you might need because many personal items we are used to getting easily in the U.S. are not as easy to get in another country.
- If you are taking any prescription medicines, be sure to pack enough for every day you are away from home, along with an additional three to four days’ supply. Students are required to keep all prescription medications in the original prescription bottles and to always carry those bottles in their carry-on luggage. Be sure to check TSA guidelines if the medicines are liquids.
IN YOUR TRAVEL WALLET
❒ National medical insurance card
❒ Print out of your international medical insurance card (this will be given to you at the international departure airport)
❒ A copy of Hotel Bougainvillea address (Contiguo a la Escuela, Santo Tomás, Heredia, Santo Domingo, 40302, Costa Rica)
❒ ID/wallet, including personal spending money
Once you’ve checked in for your flight to Costa Rica, you should add these two items to your travel wallet:
❒ Your boarding pass
❒ Customs Declaration form
IN YOUR CARRY ON
❒ Cell phone
❒ Cell phone charger, and chargers for any other electronics
❒ A card with your parent/guardian’s number and the FutureVets Admissions Team number/emergency line in case you need to borrow a phone
❒ Small notebook
❒ An umbrella and/or other rain gear
❒ Entertainment for the plane ride (headphones, phone, playing cards, book, etc.)
❒ Empty reusable water bottle (you’ll need to fill it up after you get through airport security)
❒ Travel insurance information, if you purchased coverage
❒ 3-to-2 prong adapter (if you are packing any electronics that have a 3-prong plug)
❒ If needed, prescription medications
❒ A change of clothes
❒ Scrubs and white lab jacket for rotations on weekdays
❒ Waterproof boots or walking shoes for rotations
❒ Boots or shoes you are willing to get dirty are recommended for rotations at the school as you will be working in some farm-like environments
❒ A business casual outfit and appropriate footwear for closing ceremony
Men: Trousers/khakis and collared shirts
Women: Knee-length dresses or skirts, trousers, collared shirts, blouses
Note: No jeans or athletic wear
❒ Casual warm-weather clothing for weekend excursions
❒ Bathing suit
❒ Pajamas/sweats for your overnight accommodations
❒ Light hoodie or jacket
❒ Rain jacket or slicker for outdoor rotations
❒ A travel outfit for your trip back home
❒ Socks and undergarments
❒ Toothbrush and toothpaste
❒ Shampoo and conditioner
❒ Body wash or soap
❒ Bug Spray
❒ Small first aid kit (Bandaids, Tylenol, Travel Sickness Aid, Antihistamines, Imodium)
❒ If needed, glasses/contacts and contact case/solution
Don’t worry if you experience a degree of culture shock during the first few days abroad – you will be experiencing a different culture! It’s only natural. To ensure that culture shock doesn’t turn into a negative experience, think about how you can turn your lack of local knowledge into a positive.
Open yourself up to learning from local cultures, traditions, and people. Set yourself some goals at the beginning of your trip, and when you feel blue, actively try to achieve them. Connecting with people back home is another way to feel better about being away. Or log onto the WiFi and share your pictures, videos, GIFs, and anything else you come up with!
Writing about your time abroad can also be a great way of capturing your experiences, and can often make for a great record for you to look back on.
This is a preliminary schedule for reference and is subject to change.
NOTE: This is a preliminary schedule and is subject to change.
JULY 31: Travel to international departure airport (MIA)
AUG 1: Orientation & Travel to Costa Rica – Travel to accommodations – Rest
AUG 2 – 6: Rotations
AUG 7: Cultural Tour
AUG 8: Rest day and Shopping
AUG 9 – 13: Rotations
AUG 13: Rotations, closing ceremony, and goodbyes
AUG 14: Departure
REMEMBER TO ENJOY YOURSELF! This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity! Make the most of it, be safe, and have fun!