The College of Natural Resources and Environment (CNRE) Study Abroad Program offers excellent international experiences through several courses taught in a wide variety of countries. These courses are offered to students from any major that have completed at least one year of on-campus instruction, and have good scholastic credentials (have met GPA standards). All students must complete and submit all application materials before their application will be considered. Applications are reviewed in the order that they are received and candidates are accepted on rolling admission basis. Applications for all courses are available at the VT Education Abroad website. Details on each course can be found below, by contacting the instructor for the course, or by contacting Dr. Tom Hammett, Coordinator of International Programs, College of Natural Resources and Environment (email: himal@vt.edu or 540-231-2716).

You may find brochures on each of the CNRE courses in Room 230 Cheatham Hall. To learn how you can apply for each course visit VT Education Abroad.

STUDY ABROAD COURSES OPEN TO STUDENTS (open to all majors, students may qualify for undergraduate or graduate credit)


Upcoming Programs

China

May 16-25, 2012

Chinese woman in polo shirt and traditional robe looking across a terraced paddy field of rice in Longsheng, China in hopes of sustainability. Global Sustainability Initiative

The Global Sustainability Initiative (GSI) will lead a team of professionals to Southern China to explore the sustainability challenges facing the region and to develop a set of recommendations for partner organizations in promoting sustainable development strategies. The team will be visiting several major cities and rural areas, each of which faces tremendous opportunities and challenges for sustainable development.

China’s rapidly growing economy has significant implications for global society. With close to 1.5 billion citizens, including an emerging middle-class of approximately 300 million people, China’s patterns of production and consumption are of global concern. The significance of these trends cannot be overstated. The sustainable development of China is a critical issue for the Chinese and for the international community, as the environmental, social, and economic impacts will be profound.

If development follows a sustainable path, millions of people stand to rise out of poverty, develop secure access to nutritious diets, education, healthcare, and hope for a better future. If development in China takes unsustainable forms, the rates of climate change, resource depletion, economic disparity, social injustices, scarcity, and conflict are sure to increase. The stakes have never been higher.

Participants will work as a team to produce a report and other products of value to local and international partners. Pre- and post-trip work is required.

China Sustainability Initiative

Download the Study Abroad in China brochure [PDF 2.3 MB]

South Africa

May 16-25, 2012

Global Sustainability Initiative

The Global Sustainability Initiative will lead a team of professionals to South Africa to explore and better understand the issues and sustainability challenges facing the nation. A country rich in natural and cultural heritage, South Africa is composed of landscapes from modern urban financial centers to traditional rural villages and world famous national parks.

Two decades after the end of Apartheid, economic growth has generated tremendous wealth, but the results remain socially inequitable and have resulted in serious environmental degradation. Since hosting the World Summit on Sustainable Development in 2002, creating strategies that support both resilient natural systems and economic prosperity for people remains a challenge, but is shifting from theory to practice.

We will explore the socio-ecological systems of this remarkable country, including: the urban-rural interface, managing for global environmental change, migration and health, green infrastructure and settlement planning, and biodiversity conservation in the only country that contains an entire floral kingdom. We will meet with government officials, academics, practitioners, and activists who are shaping a new South Africa.

Participants will work as a team to produce a report and other products of value to local and international partners. Pre- and post-trip work is required.

Sustainability in South Africa Project

Download the Study Abroad in South Africa brochure [PDF 2.2 MB]


Previous Programs

Ireland

Spring Break 2011 (March 4-12)

Culture, Natural Resources, and Design in Ireland
WOOD 3954 (CRN 17929)

Spend your Spring Break in beautiful and historical Ireland. Experience the culture and history of the rugged west coast. Explore the city of Galway and hike in Connemara National Park. Learn the ancient Gaelic sport of hurling. Visit the Galway-Mayo Institute of Technology and participate in a hands-on design and project management mini-course. Experience the world!

Download the Ireland Spring Break course brochure [PDF 103 KB]

Apply for the spring break course in Ireland.

New Zealand-Winter

Winter Break Special Course in New Zealand — Hurry, spots are filling quickly!

GEOG 3954/5954 or NR 3954/5954: Sustaining Human Societies and the Environment in New Zealand

December 26, 2010 through January 17, 2011.

This 23 day study abroad program will examine the natural and social history and resource conservation of New Zealand’s South Island using a Geographic, ecological landscape perspective. New Zealand’s isolation, after its separation from the ancient Gondwanaland millions of years ago, has left this island nation with a unique natural heritage.

The plants and animals that have 1 evolved here are unknown elsewhere in the world. Our program will focus on topics related to sustainable development (sustaining human societies and the natural environment) through educational travel, field trips, active participation, lecture presentations and seminars, and coursework exercises. The goal of this course is using the New Zealand case to integrate the different perspectives of diverse natural, biological, and social science disciplines to improve understanding of relationships between human societies and the natural environment. The impact of humans on natural resources and their sustainable use and conservation will be emphasized. For more information, contact the Instructor: Bill Carstensen (540/231-2600 or carstens@vt.edu)

Download the NZ Winter Break course brochure [PDF 103 KB]

Apply for the winter course (2010-11) in New Zealand.

Antarctica

Sustaining Human Societies and the Environment in Antarctica (Winter Break 2010)

The Antarctica program provides a journey to the coldest, windiest, and driest continent on Earth and yields 6 hours of credit. Students will register for this as a fall semester 2010 course and attend weekly class meetings throughout the fall semester. You spend the fall semester on campus in Blacksburg taking your regular classes and participating with your classmates in a weekly web-cast class on Antarctica. The coursework discusses contemporary issues in Antarctica and the adjacent sub-Antarctic region.

Then during winter break (16-29 December 2010), you participate in a 2-week field study in traveling through southern Argentina, and Tierra del Fuego to Antarctica. While in Antarctica, you will encounter penguins, seals, and whales, not to mention mile-long icebergs, snow-covered mountains, and breathtaking landscapes. A fully outfitted ship serves as our expedition base, and we take landings onto the continent twice daily. You will take countless stunning photos of wildlife and scenery by which to remember this experience of a lifetime.

For more information about this course, contact the leader of this year’s program Dr. Blanc

Download an information sheet on the course in Antarctica [PDF 183 KB]

Apply for the course in Antarctica during the winter 2010-11.

Dominican Republic

Semester Abroad in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic - Fall 2010. Want to spend the semester in the Caribbean earning 18 credit hours of Virginia Tech credits? Consider this unique Virginia Tech program in Punta Cana, Dominican Republic: Applications are accepted until the program is full.

Advantages of this program include:

  1. You pay only 80% of regular tuition and fees plus a program fee. The overall cost of the program is close to the cost of attendance in Blacksburg. In addition to the tuition a program fee of $7000 that includes round-trip airfare, accommodations, most meals, and excursions around the country, including a visit to the capital city of Santo Domingo.
  2. Special $500 scholarships are still available.
  3. Earn 18 credit hours and return to Blacksburg before the end of the regular semester. Courses in the Fall semester 2010 will include Spanish Culture and Civilization, Physical Geography of the Dominican Republic, Sociology of Globalization, Introduction to Theater (Caribbean Focus), Tropical Ornithology, and a Spanish skills class designed to teach Spanish to new students and enhance the Spanish skills of students who already have some Spanish background. Other courses are being developed. Don't worry if you have taken any of these courses--you will still receive credit under a different course number.
  4. Field trips to beautiful remote areas of the Dominican Republic and to the oldest city in the New World - Santo Domingo.
  5. Access to the amenities of a 4-star hotel (pools, beaches, windsurfing, horse-back riding, etc.) including incredible buffet dinners every evening you are not traveling. You will live and have classes in an air-conditioned with wireless internet at the Biodiversity Center across the road from the hotel.
  6. Participate in a rewarding service-learning project in the local community.

Students are encouraged to submit an application immediately to insure space in the program. Contact Jerry Via at viaj@vt.edu or 540/231-5144.

The following Education Abroad courses are offered by the College of Natural Resources and Environment during 2010. Contact the instructor to learn more about these courses and if they will be offered during 2011:

Belize

Rainforest to Reef in Belize (Spring and Summer 2010): The College is offering again a summer study abroad course in Belize during 2009. You register for the course and attend on-campus meetings weekly during the Spring Semester (before your departure). Then you participate in the field section of course beginning in mid-May when you travel to Belize and spend 12 days observing natural resources, development, and agriculture issues on the ground. Scholarships are available for this course. This course is filled for 2010. But if you are interested in the 2011 course, please contact Dr. Glen Stevens (glsteven@vt.edu) or Dr. Hammett (himal@vt.edu) for more information.

Download the brochure describing the Belize course [PDF 196 KB]

Costa Rica

Global Issues in Natural Resources in Costa Rica. (Spring 2010): This new and unique course will bring faculty and students together to learn more about global issues that impact the sustainable management and use of natural resources. Issues were examined through the lens of examples in Costa Rica including natural resources conservation, water management, ecotourism, wood products manufacturing, forest certification, and wildlife protection will be examined through field trips and lecture by experts. The course was hosted by the staff and faculty of the Costa Rica Institute of Technology, and included visits to several beautiful parks and reserves in coastal and mountain regions. The course helped students better understand how these issues are related to Virginia and the United States. Students met on campus during January and February for sessions that will provide background information. The field part of the course in Costa Rica occurred during 2010 Spring Break and was lead by Dr. Henry Quesada, and Dr. Tom Hammett, Department of Wood Science and Forest Products. After returning from Costa Rica, during March and April the class met to discuss their reflections and report on their observations. If you are interested in future courses in Costa Rica please contact Dr. Henry Quesada (quesada@vt.edu)

Download a brochure describing the Costa Rica course [PDF 71.2 KB]

New Zealand-Summer

Sustaining Human Societies and the Environment in New Zealand (Summer 2010): Follows a similar schedule as our December 2009/January 2010 course in New Zealand. The students depart from the USA on May 17, 2010 and the course begins in country on May 19. The course ends in country on June 11 and the students arrive back in the USA on June 11. Any student continuing on for the Fiji program would have a flight pre-arranged for transfer from NZ to Fiji in time to arrive for the start of the Fiji course. This will be a SUMMER I course for six VT credits. The application deadline for this course has past. But, there may be spots still available for this class. Contact Dr. Joe Roggenbuck (roggenbuck@vt.edu) for more information.

Download the information sheet for the Summer 2010 New Zealand course [PDF 72.3 KB]

Fiji

Sustaining Human Societies and the Environment inFiji (Summer 2010): Students should depart from the US two days prior to the beginning of the course (June 13), and should arrive back in the USA on June 21, 2010. Any student registered for this Fiji course and coming from the New Zealand or Australia course would have a transfer flight pre-arranged in time to arrive for the beginning of the Fiji program. This will be a SUMMER I course for three VT credits. The application deadline for this course has past and the course is full for 2010. Contact Dr. Joe Roggenbuck (roggenbuck@vt.edu) for more information on this course.

Download the information sheet for the Summer 2010 Fiji course [PDF 104 KB]

Australia

Sustaining Human Societies and the Environment in Australia (Summer 2010): Departs USA on June 24 and ends in Australia on July 19, 2010. Students will register for this as a SUMMER I course. Students continuing from Australia to the Fiji course would have a transfer flight pre-arranged to get them from Australia to arrive in Fiji in time for the beginning of the Fiji course. This will be a SUMMER II course for six VT credits. The application deadline for this course has past. But, please contact the program leader Dr. Blanc (lblanc@vt.edu) for possible late applications or next year’s course.

Download the information sheet for the Summer 2010 Australia course [PDF 245 KB]

For more information on these and other courses taught by CNRE faculty, please contact Dr. Hammett, Coordinator of International Programs, College of Natural Resources and Environment, room 230 Cheatham Hall (phone: 231-2716; email: himal@vt.edu).

Course materials and course application materials for these courses can be found at the Virginia Tech Education Abroad Office web site. Go to: www.educationabroad.vt.edu