Atenas, Costa Rica;Atherton Tablelands, Australia;Bocas del Toro, Panama;Bumthang, Bhutan;Pilcopata, Madre de Dios, Peru;Rhotia, Tanzania;Siem Reap, Cambodia;South Caicos Island, Turks and Caicos Islands;
Through Hollins' affiliation with the School for Field Studies, Hollins science majors can get hands-on, research-based experience in ecology, environmental issues, and sustainable development in environmentally sensitive areas around the world. The School's programs are designed to train students to engage in field research that addresses the environmental problems and needs of local communities.
SFS has a number of field sites available to students, each with a unique focus in environmental research and conservation. Course topics range from "Principles of Forest Management" (Australia) to "Wildlife Ecology" (Tanzania) to "Tropical Ecology of the Amazon" (Peru).
Semesters are split into faculty-guided field exercises and a more individually-driven directed research project. Students can select a topic of study from a number of on-going field research projects undertaken at each of the local program Centers, and will engage in data collection and management, various field techniques and analysis under the guidance of a faculty mentor.
Each field station offers four required courses--one in local ecology, one in resource management, one in economic issues and sustainable development, and one in directed research. Some programs also offer two-credit courses in the local language or culture.
Class days are spent in a combination of lectures, field trips, field exercises, and research. Students are taught by resident faculty, who are experienced teachers and research scientists with extensive knowledge of the local cultures. Government officials, resource managers, and local professors, and other local experts may also take part in instruction.
Credit for most courses is issued through the biology department. All courses are subject to the registrar's course approval process.
Housing and Meals
Students at the School for Field Studies take classes, live, and eat at the program's field stations and do their research at nearby sites. Students share housing, meals, classes, and free time with other members of the group and are involved in the day-to-day operation of the field station so must be able and willing to get along well with others in close quarters.
Because the program's Center and field-work locations may be isolated, students should expect some discomfort or inconvenience during their time on-site. Some of these challenges might include limited or unreliable communication, wet environments, limited or cold showers, and a diversity of wildlife (i.e. rodents, insects, bats, etc.).
What is Covered by the Comprehensive Fee
Program-related ground transportation and entry fees
Field equipment and supplies
Orientation on Hollins campus and at program site
Comprehensive health insurance while abroad
International Student ID Card
Application Fee ($50)
Personal and independent travel expenses
Any gear or supplies not provided by program Center
GPA of 3.0 or higher overall and in science courses
Two terms of college-level biology with at least a B average
Two terms of college-level Spanish (Costa Rica only)
No major disciplinary infractions
Applicants are also evaluated on their academic and personal maturity, flexibility, and openness to new cultural experiences. Hollins recommends approved candidates to the School for Field Studies. SFS makes final admissions decisions.**
**Please note: In addition to the Hollins application, you must also apply directly to SFS for acceptance into this program.