Overall Rating Silver - expired
Overall Score 50.18
Liaison Josh Nease
Submission Date May 21, 2019
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

Radford University
IN-24: Innovation A

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 1.00 / 1.00 Josh Nease
Sustainability Manager
Academic Programs
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Name or title of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome:
RARE - Radford Amazonian Research Expedition

A brief description of the innovative policy, practice, program, or outcome that outlines how credit criteria are met and any positive measurable outcomes associated with the innovation:

The Radford Amazonian Research Expedition (RARE) provides undergraduate students with a unique opportunity to conduct original research in a primary Amazonian rainforest ecosystem. Students spent three weeks learning and exploring deep in the Peruvian jungle.

Members of the RARE team travel from Radford to Puerto Maldonado, a rapidly growing city near Peru’s eastern border. In Puerto Maldonado, the team meets with guides from a conservation and ecotourism group devoted to the protection and conservation of the Peruvian jungle. From there the RARE team travels eight hours to reach the remote Las Piedras Biodiversity Station where they conduct their studies.

Throughout the several weeks spent in and around the Las Piedras Station, members of the RARE team conduct multiple original scientific studies that the students themselves work to design and prepare during the preceding semester. Their research focuses on a wide variety of topics related to exploration of this all but unmapped jungle ecosystem, such as the impact of deforestation on microbial metagenomics, analysis of the antibacterial and antifungal properties of rare plants, cataloging of newly discovered species, and tracking and behavioral studies of megafauna including tapir, jaguars, macaws and monkeys.

In addition to their independent research, RARE students have the opportunity to explore the forest and river, learn from local guides and study under Radford’s expert faculty. They encounter rare and endangered species, visit local markets, see the impact of deforestation first hand, and hike and study in a truly one of a kind place.

Which of the following impact areas does the innovation most closely relate to? (select up to three):
Global Citizenship

A letter of affirmation from an individual with relevant expertise or a press release or publication featuring the innovation :

The website URL where information about the innovation is available :
Additional documentation to support the submission:

Data source(s) and notes about the submission:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution or simply email your inquiry to stars@aashe.org.