Here are just a few of the opportunities we offer to explore the world!

Comparative Psychology: Marine and Cultural-Historical Studies in Belize

Comparative psychologists study the behavioral patterns and minds of a wide array of animal species, including humans. There is an emphasis on discovering similarities and differences across species that may shed light on evolutionary and developmental processes. Belize has a rich marine life as well as diverse cultural and language traditions (including Belizean Creole, Spanish, and English). We will use a comparative and cross-cultural lens to focus on marine species and on learning from the people of Belize.

Following the on-campus component, we will embark on a 13-day field course to Belize to assist researchers from the Oceanic Society. This group is conducting several long-term studies documenting the abundance, distribution, and behavioral ecology of bottlenose dolphins, manatees, and sea turtles off the coast of Belize.

While in the field, we will also learn about Belizean culture, discuss community-based planning for sustainable marine development, and meet Belizeans involved in protecting this exceptional ecosystem. We will also explore Mayan ruins in Belize and Guatemala. There will be good opportunities to immerse ourselves in the culture and the intersections of marine conservation and daily Belizean life.


Latvia & Sweden: Traditions of Civic Engagement in Intercultural Context

Through the multi‐disciplinary lens of civic engagement, we will compare and contrast a myriad of interdependent cultural issues in Latvia, a Baltic nation ruled by the Communist ideology of the Soviet Union for more than five decades, and the neighboring Scandinavian independent socialist democracy of Sweden. We’ll examine the ways in which both Latvia and Sweden develop policies, programs, and practices that create a safety net to address current societal issues.

Focus points of the course include intercultural comparisons of approaches to civic engagement aimed at fostering self‐sufficient communities. We’ll experience intercultural exchange and rigorous, transformational field study in both countries. Experiences will include service-learning, building relationships with Latvian and Swedish students and professionals, exploring natural and historical landmarks on the Baltic coast, and experiencing traditions of food, art, music, and dance.


Monkey Chants & Ancient Dance – Art and Social Change in Bali & Java

Bali and Java remain the most popular centers of artistic expression in Indonesia. This course will use traditional Indonesian art forms—including music, dance, and theater—as a lens through which to view social change in Bali and Java. Using an interdisciplinary framework, the course will provide us with opportunities to explore the ancient roots of Javanese and Balinese art, especially the performing arts, and discover the dynamic ways in which these traditional arts are changing in response to the pressures of globalization, modernization, and international tourism.

Onsite locations will include Janabadra University and Gadjah Mada University in Yogyakarta (Java), cultural destinations in Yogyakarta and Ubud (Bali), and village homestays in central Java and Bali. In addition, we’ll participate in a service-learning project and direct interactions with local Indonesian artists, college students, professors and community members.