Spring Term Abroad

International experience is viewed as an important part of a comprehensive education. The purpose of Spring Term Abroad is to further one’s knowledge of the world and its cultures and to expand the opportunities and arenas for academic inquiry. This requires a high level of commitment and engagement on your part,  but promises a higher level of reward and satisfaction.

Spring Term Abroad has a special structure, including a specific application process, its own mandatory deadlines, and a separate financial process.  Contact International Education for details.

Science in Art: Technical Examination of 17th-Century

Students in the Netherlands.

ARTH 356
4 Credits
4 Weeks in The Netherlands
Professor Erich Uffelman

ARTH 356 involves a survey of 17th century Dutch history, art history, etc., which links the scientific analysis to the art and culture of the time. The first twelve weeks (CHEM156) involving primarily the scientific and technical background will be taught on campus at W&L during the winter term. The second four weeks (ARTH 356) involving art and culture, will be taught at the Center for European Studies (CES) Universiteit Maastricht.

In the Netherlands, students will have the opportunity to see the conservation laboratories at some of the major Dutch art museums. The language of instruction at CES Maastricht is English. The Dutch are typically fluent in several languages including English, so students will not have to learn a foreign language to participate in the program. However, students will be expected to learn key phrases in Dutch as a matter of courtesy to citizens of the host country.

Pre-requisite: CHEM 156 (3 credits, winter term 2012, FDR SC). Permission of the instructor required.

Contact Prof. Uffelman, uffelmane@wlu.edu, for further information.



Business in a Developing Economy

Beach at sunset in Nicaragua.


BUS 390B
4 Credits
4 Weeks in Nicaragua
Professors Sandy Reiter and Stephan Fafatas

Nicaragua is the second poorest nation in the Western hemisphere behind Haiti. The primary purpose of this course is to understand why and how this continues to be so. We will investigate the economic and business development issues and the role business has in hindering and/or promoting development. Areas of investigation may include trade agreements, sustainable development, foreign direct investment, maquiladoras, privatization of utilities, indigenous property rights, micro-financing, fair trade, participation of women in the economy, and local cooperatives

In addition, Nicaragua provides a unique setting to study the process of gathering and analyzing information on transactions. Specifically, we will investigate how local managers and entrepreneurs use this information to measure business growth. Among other activities, the course includes factory visits, meetings with business and economic officials, and a tour of a local coffee farm.

Program Fee (paid to W&L): $2,810. This includes international airfare from Miami, room and board, all transportation within Nicaragua, activity costs, and mandatory supplemental health insurance.


Estimated Additional Costs: Airfare to Miami ($300), some meals not covered in program fee ($75); miscellaneous spending money ($125).

For further information, please contact Prof. Reiter, reiters@wlu.edu, or Prof. Fafatas, sfafatas@wlu.edu.



Environment and Economic Development in Amazonas

Students on a boat in a river in Brazil.


ECON 259
4 Credits
3.5 Weeks in Brazil
Professor Jim Kahn

Amazonas is a huge Brazilian state of 1.5 million square kilometers which retains 98 percent of its original forest cover. The course focuses on both rural and urban settings, looking at the role of the environment in sustainable development. Professor Kahn and his Brazilian colleagues are the leading experts in this area and will present past experiences of the region and why they were successful or unsuccessful, as well as examining current issues and the strengths and weaknesses of the approaches that have been put forward. The learning objectives of this course integrate those of the economics and environmental studies majors. Students are asked to use economic tools in an interdisciplinary context to understand the relationships among economic behavior, ecosystems and policy choices.

Prerequisite: ECON 101 or ENV 110 and instructor consent. 
First year students are encouraged to apply.
Students will leave for Brazil on the Friday of spring break and return to W&L for the last week of classes. Students who desire further travel in Brazil and Latin America are not required to return for the last week of classes, but must submit the final projects by e-mail.

Readings and weekly mandatory meetings will be required during winter term.

Program Fee (paid to W&L): $3,050. (This is the amount to be paid to W&L and does not include airfare from the US to Manaus. It includes all travel costs (boat and plane) within Brazil. It includes, room, some meals, mandatory supplementary health insurance, visa and registration fees, etc.

Estimated Additional Costs: The airfare from Washington DC to Manaus is US$960 on Copa Airlines. Anything could change between now and the time you buy your ticket, and it could be as high as US$1300. It is unlikely to fall in cost. Students should bring at least US$300 to cover meals that are not included in the fee, and miscellaneous spending money (for social life, buying presents, etc.). The visa for Brazil is $180 and at a minimum, you will need a yellow fever vaccination (available at any public health department).The best way to obtain Brazilian currency is with an ATM card when you are in Brazil.

For further information please contact Professor Kahn, kahnj@wlu.edu



The Economics of Tropical Seascapes

Belize beach.

4 Credits
9 Days in Belize
Professor Jim Casey

ECON 288A takes an interdisciplinary approach to environmental economics by allowing students to learn economic theory in the classroom, apply it in the field, and learn about coastal ecology by living in Belize. The primary question to be addressed in this course is how to value coastal resources-specifically-coral reef ecosystems.

This course will introduce techniques economists have developed to value non-market environmental resources. The two valuation techniques to be explored are (1) Choice Models (CM), and (2) Contingent Valuation Method (CVM).

At the end of this course students will be able to (1) read the literature on coastal valuation and management, (2) determine for themselves the validity of environmental valuation for policy purposes, and (3) more deeply understand the importance and value of environmental resources as they will have spent one week studying and living in the coastal ecosystems of Ambergris Caye, Belize.

Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor. Preference will be given to students with more economics and environmental studies coursework.

Program Fee (paid to W&L): $2,240. This includes airfare, other transportation costs, room and board, and activity fees.

Estimated Additional Expenses: $300 spending money

Contact Professor Casey, caseyj@wlu.edu, for further information.



African Economic Development

Ghana streets.


4 Credits
3 Weeks in Ghana
Professor Niels-Hugo Blunch

Through field trips and personal experiences in Ghana, you will obtain a first-hand experience on what "economic development" is - or could or should be - thus complementing the class readings and assignments, which are typically all that is included in a regular (on-campus) course. While the field trips are structured so as to provide a high likelihood of you obtaining such complementary experiences "by default" chances are that you will add to these experiences yourself, as well. Perhaps most significantly due to the fact that primary room and board (while in Ghana) will be in terms of homestays, so that you will experience first-hand what Ghanaian everyday life is really like!

More specifically, this course will present you with an intensive introduction to economic development in sub-Saharan Africa, with an emphasis on Ghana as a case study. The main part of the course is on location, in Ghana (about 3 weeks) - starting out with the first half week in Lexington for preparation, to help improve the time in Ghana, and finishing with the last half week back in Lexington for wrapping up the course. During the course there will be emphasis on the importance of health and education in economics development, especially the importance of educating girls and the potential importance of adult literacy programs in economic development in Ghana. While some of this addresses historical experiences, a major focus will be towards the future challenges and opportunities.

Prerequisite: ECON 101

Program Fee (paid to W&L): $3,800. This includes international airfare, visa, ground transportation, room and board, guest lectures, events, tours and mandatory supplemental health insurance.

Estimated Additional Expenses: $700 (books, vaccinations, spending money)

Contact Professor Blunch, blunchn@wlu.edu, for further information (incl. preliminary syllabus).



Earth Lab: Coral Reefs - Past, Present and Future

Coral reef in Belize.


GEOL 105
(Pending faculty approval)
4 Credits
10 Days in Belize
Professor Lisa Greer

This course explores the geology, chemistry, biology, and ecology of coral reefs and associated carbonate systems. Topics include identification of key reef organisms and microhabitats, understanding reef ecosystem dynamics in space and time, the physical/geological controls on reef formation, and current threats to coral reef health. The course will involve approximately 10 days of travel and work in Belize and completion of an independent reef assessment project.

This course satisfies the SL FDR requirement, and can substitute for GEOL 100/101.

Prerequisite: Permission of the instructor and three credits in Geology.

Program Fee (paid to W&L): $510. This includes airfare, accommodation and meals, activity costs, supplemental health insurance.

Estimated Additional Costs: Snorkel gear and books ($200-$300); optional day trip ($300); pocket money ($200).

Contact Prof. Greer, greerl@wlu.edu, for further information.



African Politics

Street in Ghana.


POL 288
4 Credits
3 Weeks in Ghana
Professor Tyler Dickovick

Ghana is one of Africa's most vibrant countries by any standard - in terms of culture, society, history, politics, and economy. Using Ghana as a geographic base, this course will introduce students to African politics and society, with a particular emphasis on political economy in contemporary and historical perspectives; this focus will be complemented by the study of African philosophy and literature. We will discuss political institutions and social change in contemporary Africa, and historical patterns of economic and political development, with an emphasis on Ghana as our central case study. We will pay particular attention to questions of public action, poverty reduction, and human capability. The course is based in the modern, cosmopolitan capital of Accra, with excursions to such sites as the castles of the slave trade and the historic city of Kumasi, seat of the Ashanti kings. We will work closely with our partner course (ECON 288B), with shared guest speakers by many of Ghana's top social scientists, occasional joint class sessions, and travel together to many of Ghana's most important historical and cultural sites.

Program Fee (paid to W&L): $3,800. This includes international airfare, visa, room and board, guest lectures, events and tours and mandatory supplemental health insurance.

Estimated Additional Costs: $700 (books, vaccinations, spending money).

Contact Professor Dickovick, dickovickt@wlu.edu for further information.