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  • Locations: Bocas del Toro, Panama
  • Program Terms: Fall, Spring
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Program Sponsor: The School for Field Studies (SFS) 
  • Dates / Deadlines
Fact Sheet:
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Language of Instruction: English, Spanish Core Program Attributes: Direct Enrollment, Project-based Program
Minimum GPA: 2.8 Housing Options: Dormitory/Residence Hall
Approved by: AAP, CALS, ENG, HUM EC, ILR, SHA Program Advisor: Rebecca Dlubac
Curricular Highlights: Natural Science, Research, Sustainability
Program Description:

PANAMA SEMESTER: TROPICAL ISLAND BIODIVERSITY STUDIES


PROGRAM DETAILS

  • Terms: Fall, Spring
  • Credits: 18 semester-hour credits
  • Prerequisites: One semester of college-level ecology, biology, or environmental studies/science; 18 years of age
  • Application Deadline: Rolling admissions. Early applications encouraged
  • Financial Aid: All accepted students can apply for need-based scholarships, grants, and loans


OVERVIEW

Spend a semester in the dynamic community of Bocas del Toro, where everything – from the thriving underwater ecosystems to the rich green rainforests – seems more alive. Go behind the scenes in this “paradise” as you study the impacts of tourism and development on the island system’s unique habitats, evaluate local environmental policies, and apply the principles of sustainability and conservation to your research project.

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS:
  • Go snorkeling among coral reefs, mangroves, seagrass beds, and other marine ecosystems to learn about life beneath the waves.
  • Tour cacao and coffee farms and banana plantations to gain an understanding of how diverse forms of agriculture affect coastal environments and local economies.
  • Venture into the rainforest for field lectures on biodiversity, climate change, interspecies competition, and habitat modification.

THE FIELD STATION:
SFS students live and study at the Center for Tropical Island Biodiversity Studies, a onetime beachfront hotel that sits among the slender palms and warm sands of Isla Colón lies the Center. At this idyllic field station, you’ll take your classes in the waves of the Caribbean and the surrounding rainforests. The laid-back tourist hub of Bocas Town is a short taxi ride away, with access to shops, restaurants, and a vibrant culture that is as unique as the mix of people who live here.


RESEARCH THEMES

  • Marine protected areas
  • Rainforest biodiversity assessment
  • Tourism impacts
  • Ecosystem monitoring
  • Community livelihoods
  • Perceptions of conservation
 

FIELD SKILLS

  • Species identification
  • Tourism impact assessment
  • Spanish language
  • Research design
  • Data collection
  • Scientific writing and presentation
 

LEARN MORE

REQUEST INFORMATION

APPLY NOW


CONNECT WITH SFS

Visit the SFS website
Call the Admissions Hotline at 800.989.4418
Email admissions@fieldstudies.org
Read updates from the field on the SFS Blog
Follow SFS on Instagram and Facebook
Watch student videos on YouTube and Vimeo
 

Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year App Deadline Decision Date Approx. Start Approx. End
Fall 2019 03/01/2019 ** Rolling Admission 09/02/2019 12/11/2019
Spring 2020 10/01/2019 ** Rolling Admission TBA TBA

** Programs may fill long before their final deadline. * Recommendation--For SPRING: APPLY in MAY to study abroad the following spring. For FALL/YEAR: APPLY in DECEMBER. Late applications may be accepted, but colleges typically need time to process your approval.