Educational Opportunities Local & Abroad
Study Abroad Opportunities:
The Center for Ecological Living and Learning (Affiliated program)
The Center for Ecological Living and Learning (CELL) offers study abroad experiences based in service-learning in various locations worldwide. In each of their semester-long programs, students will participate in hands-on service projects that promote community-based sustainable practices, as well as design their own action-plans, following completion of the program, to become a part of a network of individuals of conscience committed to global sustainability. CELL offers semester programs in Iceland, Central America, and the Middle East, as well as a three week program in Iceland during the month of May. For application instructions and specific course offerings and program descriptions, please visit http://www.cellonline.org.
Living Routes: Study Abroad in EcoVillages (Affiliated program)
Living Routes programs enable students to engage in academic and experiential learning by studying in communities across the globe that are striving to live more equitable, just, and sustainable lifestyles. These communities are ideal campuses to learn about and experience personal and community-based solutions to real world issues, including sustainable development, peace and social justice, green building, habitat restoration, organic agriculture, local economies, women's empowerment, permaculture, environmental studies and research, and more. Students partake in academic, interdisciplinary coursework, service learning, cultural studies and community immersions, creating a learning community within a living community. Living Routes offers semester programs in India, Costa Rica, Scotland, and Israel, summer programs in Australia, Brazil, Peru, and the USA, and January programs in India and Mexico. Living Routes also offers an Ecovillage Year Abroad program. For more information, visit http://www.livingroutes.org/
Organization for Tropical Studies
The Organization for Tropical Studies (OTS) is a non-profit consortium that has grown to include 63 universities and research institutions from the United States, Latin America and Australia. OTS was founded to provide leadership in education, research and the responsible use of natural resources in the tropics. To address this mission, OTS conducts graduate and undergraduate education, facilitates research, participates in tropical forest conservation, maintains three biological stations in Costa Rica and conducts environmental education programs. In partnership with Duke University, OTS offers undergraduate semester and summer study abroad programs in Costa Rica and South Africa, as well as a research program specifically for Native American and Pacific Islander college students. For more information on specific programs, visit http://ots.ac.cr/.
Wild Rockies Field Institute
The mission of the Wild Rockies Field Institute is to offer academically rigorous, field-based courses that help to develop engaged, informed citizens and strong leaders capable of addressing our society’s complex social and environmental issues. WFRI provides alternatives to traditional classroom academics, combining challenging courses with backcountry travel and living in some of the most beautiful and interesting landscapes in the world. To varying degrees within each course, students will study local ecology, land management policy, and the broad spectrum of ethics and values that determine our relationship to the land. Classes run from two to nine weeks and fulfill anywhere from 3 to 12 semester credits. Programs include Colorado Plateau: Desert Canyons & Cultures (semester), Montana Afoot & Afloat: Human/Land Relations (semester), Wild Rockies Summer Semester, Cycle the Rockies: Energy and Climate Change in Montana, Restoration Ecology in Greater Yellowstone, The Alaskan Rainforest: Ecology & Policy of the Tongass, and Environmental Ethics: Global Climate Change and Visions of a Sustainable Future. For more information, visit www.wrfi.net.
Ecosa Institute Program in Sustainable Design
The Ecosa Institute was founded in the belief that a new design philosophy informed by the natural world is critical to the future survival of our species. The design of human environments has always had a transformative impact on human societies and the natural systems on which we depend; the environments we create change the way our societies perceive the world. The mission of the Ecosa Institute is to restore health to the natural environment, and thus the human environment, through education in design. Their vision is based on synthesizing the ethical and ecological values critical to the health of the environment, with the vitality and dynamism of the design arts.
The Ecosa Institute, located in Prescott, Arizona, offers Fall, Spring, and Summer Certifiate Programs in Regenerative Ecological Design (RE-Design). The program is an in-depth introduction to sustainable and ecological design, exploring the many ways in which design can solve the environmental challenges of the 21st century. Architecture, planning, landscape architecture, industrial design, and other design-thinking disciplines are unique problem-solving tools that have the potential to create a healthy, just, and sustainable world. The core curriculum includes systems thinking and ecological design concepts, hands on design and construction projects, and systems integration. For a sample curriculum, application deadlines and forms, and program fee information. It can be taken for credit through Prescott University (you must check with Ithaca College as to whether credits are eligible for transfer). For more information, visit the http://www.ecosainstitute.org.
Short Term Study Abroad Programs:
Many of the programs listed above offer short-term summer and winter programs as well as semester-long programs. Here are some organizations that specifically offer non-semester programs:
International Student Volunteers
ISV offers a unique combination of volunteer projects and action-packed adventure travel in a fun, safe, educational and well-organized environment. ISV participants make a significant difference in the world by annually contributing over 250,000 hours of volunteer work abroad in the fields of conservation and community development. Last year, over 140 universities granted academic credit to their students for their participation in the ISV Volunteer Program. ISV has programs in Australia, Costa Rica, the Dominican Republic, Eastern Europe, Ecuador, New Zealand, South Africa, and Thailand. The program usually includes two weeks of volunteer work and two weeks of an adventure tour. Other students may choose to add additional volunteer projects after their 4 week program or those on a time budget may elect to complete just a 2 week volunteer program with no adventure tour. Participation in an ISV program may be eligible for independent study or internship credits. Visit http://www.isvolunteers.org/ for more information.
Operation Wallacea is a network of academics from various North American and European universities, who create and implement biodiversity and conservation management research programs. Research is supported by students, who can add this opportunity to their resume, receive credits, or collect data for a thesis. This summer program rangers from 2-8 weeks depending on the trip chosen, affordability, and desired course selection. There are nine different expeditions which are Indonesia, Honduras, South Africa/Mozambique, Peru, Egypt, Cuba, Madagascar, Guyana, and Mexico/Guatemala. Each expedition has its own focus on which courses are offered depending on the location. For more information, visit http://www.opwall.com/
Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute
Occurring all throughout the year, Finger Lakes Permaculture Institute provides opportunities to learn a land use design method to improve home scale food and forest production, to conserve resources, and save money. Students can study basic ecological principles and methods and use them to solve problems at their own home and landscape. There are courses ranging from garden design, water management, using earthworks, soils & compost, and design for animals. For more information, visit fingerlakespermaculture.org.
Groundswell Center for Local Food and Farming
Groundswell is an initiative of the Ecovillage Center for Sustainability Education that aims at teaching interested students, from youth to adults, all the necessary skills for developing sustainable local food systems. While many education centers focus their work in a classroom, Groundswell gives students the opportunity to obtain hands-on experience by working on farms and in food businesses. The courses are open to beginning farmers, students, community members, and professionals.
Summer Education Program
Groundswell's main program is its Summer Practicum in Sustainable Farming and Local Food Systems. This two-month program gives students a hands-on look BY exploring "the issues affecting sustainability of agriculture and food systems through readings, discussion, lectures, field trips, labs, and immersion in the actual work of operating a successful and sustainable small farm." The program is offered as a 6-credit course through Tompkins Cortland Community College's Environmental Studies Program. Fore more information on the Summer Practicum, click here.