Covered in lush rainforests, hundreds of mangrove islands, and coral reefs teeming with diverse marine life, the Bocas del Toro Archipelago serves as a living laboratory for studying tropical biodiversity. Unfortunately, increased tourism on the islands has led to ecosystem and natural resource degradation while also compromising Indigenous islanders’ traditional livelihoods.
|Location||Bocas del Toro, Panama|
|Term||Fall Semester, Spring Semester, Summer Session|
|Credit Type||Resident Credit|
|Sponsor||School for Field Studies|
|GPA||2.8 for semester, 2.6 for summer|
|Student Type||UofM Students|
|Student Year||Freshmen, Sophomores, Juniors, Seniors|
|Language||No Language Prerequisite|
Course descriptions and full syllabi are available on the program page of SFS' website.
Tropical Island Biodiversity Studies: Examine the natural and human systems of the island, as well as the relationships between these systems and the pressure points that threathen the delicate balance of these systems. Course topics include costal ecology, environmental policy and socioeconomic values, and Panamanian culture.
You will enroll in five courses for a total of 18 credits:
Tropical Island Ecosystems: The Human Impact: Snorkel and hike through diverse environments – from coral reefs and mangroves to cloud forests and rainforests – and study the impacts of tourism on the island system and its people. Learn about current approaches to sustainable tourism in Bocas and what can be done to protect the region’s dynamic tropical ecosystems. (SFS 3000: Tourism and Island Systems: Assessment of Sustainable Practices, 4 credits)
SFS grants admission to programs on a rolling basis as long as space is available, so there is no application deadline. You are welcome to apply for programs up to one year in advance of the program start date. Early submissions are strongly encouraged as some programs fill to capacity.
Orientation will be conducted in 2 parts: an online orientation, which is mandatory for all students, and an in-person session. You will receive more information about the online orientation via email. Failure to complete the online orientation will impact your ability to go abroad.
The date for the in-person Fall semester 2020 & Academic Year 2020-2021 orientation session is as follows:
Find your Affiliate program fee
UofM students on SFS programs receive an automatic fee reduction of $3,000 for semester, $600 for summer sessions 6 or more weeks in length and/or sequential summer programs, and $300 for summer sessions 4 weeks in length. UofM students can also take advantage of SFS's financial aid, in the form of scholarships, grants, and zero- or low-interest loans.
Add International Health Insurance
Multiply the number of months you will be away by $45.
Subtract Affiliate Fee Reduction
Visit the Affiliate Program Fees to determine the fee reduction you receive for being a University of Minnesota student.
Based on these additional services and benefits, the total program fee may be higher than the affiliate's published program fee.
Be aware: All programs require a $50 application fee. This fee will be charged to your student account upon submission of an online application.
To complete the online application for this program, you will need to select or provide the following information on the online application:
|Center Name||TC Learning Abroad Ctr|
|Education Abroad Term||See the School For Field Studies website for term options|
|Program Name||School for Field Studies|
|Track Name||See the School for Field Studies website for track name|
This program will require additional approval steps for Spring 2021 due to COVID-19. Connect with your LAC program contact for more information.
Use your University of Minnesota internet ID and password to log into the Education Abroad application system. Your student account will be charged a $50 application fee.
All students, both UofM and Non-UofM should use this apply button if applying for a program Fall 2021 or beyond (academic year, winter break etc.). You will be charged a $50 application fee for each application you submit.
For further information or questions about this program, send an email toMolly Micheels or call at 612.624.3949.