International TripsLion in Golden Field

Our faculty have worked and conducted research in many other countries. From South America to Asia and Africa, faculty introduce environmental issues that are related to global perspectives, which is critical for the development of a deeper understanding of the interconnectedness of the planet and the role we play as the largest consumers of resources.

Visit to see  pictures from past trips, including Peru, South Africa, Costa Rica, and the Galapagos Islands.

Tanzania 2013

Course Description

This course will explore various conservation models with specific examples from Tanzania and other African countries. The Serengeti ecosystem is one of Africa's most important biological resources and is critical as a tourism revenue source for Tanzania. Both the Serengeti and Ngorongoro Crater are renowned World Heritage Sites, heavily visited and praised by Western tourists as successful models of conservation. However, these sites are also places with intense conflicts between wildlife and local communities living in or near these protected areas.

While we will address specific complexities in different ecosystems that we visit and conservation challenges for key imperiled species, we will focus on the human dimension as well. By visiting several parks, reserves, and conservation buffer zones we will learn about the array of challenges faced by both conservationists and the local communities living in these areas. We will specifically examine the importance of the "Yellowstone National Park model" of conservation and the influence this model has had on the development of protected areas in East Africa. While highly lauded, this model has been criticized due to the restrictions imposed on ethnic groups and indigenous communities that often face eviction from their traditional lands and loss of access to essential natural resources.

During this study tour we will visit top conservation parks and reserves and immerse ourselves in the newly increasing use of community-based conservation projects that increasingly rely on participation of various ethnic groups in conservation and tourism. By better understanding these complex challenges, students will be better prepared to address conservation issues anywhere in the world.