These field-based, experiential classes focus on the environmental and conservation concerns, as well as the modern & traditional cultures, of Australia, New Zealand, or Fiji. They are offered Winter and Summer semesters. They are intense, academically rigorous, and interdisciplinary in design, such that they are suitable for students of all backgrounds and majors. While they have no pre-requisites, as junior-level courses students are expected to have good study skills and habits.
Everyone has a different answer to this question, but UM students who have studied abroad are very enthusiastic about its advantages. Here’s some of the most common:
There are an increasingly number of U.S. colleges and universities that are requiring a study abroad experience prior to graduation.
Australia, New Zealand and Fiji are ideal and unique places to study conservation and the sustainable management of natural resources. They have amazing ecological diversity and complexity, vibrant indigenous & modern cultures, and challenging issues of economic, social, and ecological sustainability. We believe that today’s environmental and conservation issues will take complex, integrated, global approaches that will transcend international boundaries. Students are challenged to consider their own social and environmental impacts and how their future professional aspirations can change our society.
Each of the programs uses the theme of sustainable development to explore the relationship between people and their natural environment. As an example, the New Zealand program focuses on issues of ecotourism, sheep farming, land tenure, conservation management, ecological restoration, alpine recreation, global climate change, Maori history and traditional use of resources. More details on all three programs can be found at http://www.grizzliesabroad.org
These courses develop a global perspective on human-nature interactions, with an emphasis on ethical, economic, and ecological worldviews. Each course focuses on environmental and conservation concerns, as well as the modern & traditional cultures of Australia, New Zealand or Fiji. Studying environments and cultures far from our home not only sharpens our own knowledge and priorities, but also introduces different views, different values, and different approaches.