Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 51.50
Liaison Elaine Durr
Submission Date Feb. 27, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Elon University
AC-5: Immersive Experience

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Elaine Durr
Director of Sustainability
Office of Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution offer at least one immersive, sustainability-focused educational study program that is one week or more in length?:
Yes

A brief description of the sustainability-focused immersive program(s) offered by the institution, including how each program addresses the social, economic, and environmental dimensions of sustainability:

There are study abroad and study USA programs that focus on sustainability.
One example is Costa Rica Jungle: Community, Conservation, Service. Sustainability is incorporated into all facets of the course and the UN Sustainable Development Goals are used as a framework. During the program students go to different communities and learn about environmental conservation efforts, pollution or other negative environmental practices (i.e., grass burning for cow grazing on mountainsides) and grassroots activism, while reflecting upon their own values and practices. Cultural sustainability is also a topic, with visits to indigenous communities.
Another example is Miami: Ecology, Conservation and Sustainability. This program studies the balance between modern human life and the maintenance of healthy ecosystems. During the program students examine where resources come from, how waste is processed and how local, state and national parks maintain ecological integrity in a world dominated by humans. The operation of the City of Miami, Florida is used to understand behind-the-scenes logistics, and the natural resources of South Florida are used to learn about sustainable land management practices. Topics covered include modern forestry methods, water treatment, floodwater management, solid waste disposal, recycling, state and national park management practices, ecosystem services, invasive species, ecological research, the role of zoos and aquaria in conservation, and conservation practices on public and private lands. Service projects are also incorporated.

In addition, Alternative Breaks are immersive short-term service experiences that are designed to introduce students to new local and global communities while working alongside local residents to address pressing social issues. Students participate in different types of service work (direct, indirect, or advocacy) to make a positive impact, while learning about the root causes of the issue on which that program focuses. Through alternative breaks, we hope to promote sustainability through ongoing partnerships, cost effective practices, and education about a variety of justice issues.
One program that fits particularly well is the partnership with Timpson Creek Farm focusing on sustainable agriculture and agroforestry in rural north Georgia. During this one-week program participants are given the opportunity to learn more about the cultivation of the earth and the inter-connectedness of natural resources. They experience first-hand farm work and workshops covering topics such as ecology and biodynamic stewardship. These hands-on experiences help students appreciate local food systems, our place within them, and how we can both positively and negatively impact our natural environment through the daily choices we make.
https://www.elon.edu/u/service-learning/current-students/alternative-breaks-program/.


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
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Additional documentation to support the submission:
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