ESF Faculty-led, Short-term International Academic Courses

SUNY-ESF offers several faculty-led, short-term international academic courses throughout the academic year. Since the courses are offered by ESF, students enroll in the course directly with the college and credits and grades earned appear on students’ transcripts.

Current Short-Term International Course Offerings

Spring 2016

ERE 311/511 Ecological Engineering in the Tropics in Costa Rica

Course Highlights & Facts:

  • Students will study and create ecological engineering designs that include appropriate technologies and permaculture approaches for the sustainable delivery of water, food, energy, and health resources.
  • Students will complete 5 homework assignments prior to leaving for Costa Rica to build core knowledge and be ready to use ecological engineering principles on the weeklong field trip.
  • Students will spend several days in a stunning rural setting at Rancho Mastatal with trips planned to tropical forests and waterfalls, coastal mangroves and beaches, fruit and chocolate farms, and a volcano.
  • Students will complete all course requirements before returning to ESF from spring break, so this course should not interfere with other spring semester courses during March and April.
  • Fees for the course are $1,300, which includes in-country lodging, travel, and meals, but does not include airfare to Costa Rica.
  • Enrollment is limited to between 12 and 16 students to justify, but not exceed, use of the in-country facilities.
  • Daily Orange story on the course

Questions? Please contact Dr. Charles Kroll

FOR 496, section 2 - Ecotourism Abroad: Nicaragua

Course requirements: Nine-day trip to Nicaragua over spring break (March 11 – 19, 2016), plus 4 to 5 on-campus meetings.

Students will be engaged in hands-on ecotourism and nature tourism efforts in the rural Esteli Department (i.e., state) of Nicaragua. This year, we will be working (and staying) with families involved in creating a homestay cooperative in the small village of Sontule, located within the Miraflor Nature Reserve. Students will be creating a promotional and interpretive guidebook that the homestay owners can use to attract customers. We will also spend time while in Esteli viewing scenic areas within the nature reserve, birdwatching, visiting a coffee plantation, and talking with local artisans. After leaving Sontule, we will spend several days exploring the historic city of Granada, taking a boat tour of the volcanic islands in Lake Nicaragua, and traveling to Masaya Volcano National Park to view this active crater and the nightly exodus of fruit bats. The not-for-profit organization, Comunidad Connect, will be hosting our group and providing a bi-lingual interpreter during the trip.

This 3-credit course can be used to satisfy the Field Course requirement for students in EFB (by petition) and the Directed Elective requirement for the Recreation Resources and Protected Area Management Minor (by petition).

Trip cost: $3020 (includes meals, lodging, ground transportation, and round-trip airfare to Nicaragua from Syracuse; excludes ESF health insurance ($25; required), transportation to/from Hancock Airport in Syracuse, travel insurance (recommended), optional zip-lining ($35). A passport is required. A minimum of 8 students is needed for this trip (maximum 15); students will be informed of whether the minimum number of students has been reached prior to making the deposit.

Deadlines: October 30, 2015:

Trip application due to Diane Kuehn (contact for the application); Study Abroad Application due to Emily Quackenbush, Office of International Education, 110 Bray Hall (the application is available at:

November 9, 2015: $1700 deposit due to Cashiers Office

January 15, 2016: $1320 remainder due to Cashier’s Office

Questions? Please contact: Diane Kuehn, 310A Bray Hall, (315) 470-6561

Applying to an ESF Short-Term International Program

Students interested in participating in an ESF International Program must submit the International Program General Application (PDF) to the course program leader (contact information appears below with course descriptions).

Upon acceptance into the program (prior to departure), students must submit a completed set of SUNY-ESF International Academic Program Student Forms (PDF) with a copy of their passport, visa (if applicable), health insurance, and flight information (if the program does not include a group flight).

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