Overall Rating Silver
Overall Score 56.79
Liaison Ryan Chabot
Submission Date April 23, 2024

STARS v2.2

University of Central Florida
AC-5: Immersive Experience

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Ryan Chabot
Sustainability Coordinator
Arboretum and Sustainability Initiatives
"---" 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?:

A brief description of the sustainability-focused immersive program(s) offered by the institution:

Arboretum Learning by Leading™ (LxL) Program:
The Arboretum launched its Leaning by LeadingTM (LxL) program in fall semester 2019. This innovative student leadership development program was developed by the University of California Davis Arboretum, and is being implemented by other university arboretum and public garden programs in the US and Canada. The motivation for the program is “to inspire human potential and to help people and environments thrive.” The program is based on the notion that students learn best by leading, and it includes a stepped leadership progression that moves students from participants to active leaders and co-creators of Arboretum programs. Under the guidance of a staff mentor, co-coordinator teams manage student interns and volunteers to execute program initiatives and signature projects. Interns can enroll for 0-3 credit hours in spring or fall semester. Positions include:
- Bee Campus / Pollinator
- Community Farm and Gardens
- Arboretum Gardens
- Greenhouse
- Sustainability Initiatives

UCF Biology Summer Field Institute:
The Biology Summer Field Institute is a one week program for rising junior and senior high school students interested in seeking further understanding of Central Florida’s diverse ecosystems, from Orlando to the east coast. Students will:
- participate in hands-on experiences with professional biologists in a fun and educational setting designed to inspire a passion for studying the fields of biology, ecology, and natural resource conservation
- learn field techniques and experimental approaches used in water quality assessment, vegetation monitoring, forest ecology, and studies of gopher tortoises and marine turtles
study one day in the lab learning basic data analysis and the importance of communicating science
interact with both UCF and undergraduate interns and graduate students studying marine turtle ecology and conservation
- take an overnight field trip to learn about nesting marine turtles alongside an experienced marine turtle biologist
For more information please visit: http://siucf.cs.ucf.edu/biology-overview/

Study Abroad:
- CIEE Summer Sustainability and the Environment Program in Monteverde, Costa Rica
Live on the edge of the world famous Monteverde cloud forest, while exploring sustainable economic development (Session II), and ecological engineering (Session III). There's no better setting to study these topics than in Costa Rica, a little country with a big reputation for protecting the environment, harnessing renewable energies, and creating secure food systems. You'll discover many treasures during your time abroad in this special country as you explore sustainable fisheries, tourism, conservation, agriculture, or renewable energy.
- ISA Port Elizabeth, South Africa: Sustainable Development, Environmental Studies & Sport Science- Academic Year/Semester
Nelson Mandela University (NMU) is one of the most culturally and linguistically diverse universities in Southern Africa. You will be able to take advantage of the university's unique location in the Summerstrand section of Port Elizabeth: four miles from the city center and in a nature reserve, surrounded by the sea and coastal dunes anytime you are not in class. NMU offers a diverse course list in subjects such as sports science, marine biology, zoology, environmental studies, and sustainable development studies. NMU is an engaged and people-centered university that serves the needs of its diverse communities by contributing to sustainable development through excellent academic courses, research and service delivery.
- SIT Study Abroad Panama/Costa Rica: Tropical Ecology, Marine Ecosystems, and Biodiversity Conservation
Major topics include contemporary environmental and sociocultural issues shaping Panama, environmental research methods and ethics, development and conservation, interdependent tropical ecosystems, poverty and the environment, and Indigenous cultures and conservation.
- STI Study Abroad: Iceland and Greenland: Climate Change and the Arctic
Major topics of study in the program include the impact of climate change on Arctic ecosystems and human communities, climate modeling and trends, renewable energy in Iceland, carbon management, indigenous knowledge of changes in climate, communicating climate change and science

Alternative Break Program:
- Eco-Adventure and Marine Debris Removal
Social Issue: Environmental Awareness. ABP will be partnering with the UCF Outdoor Adventure Center for a week-long trip throughout the Florida Keys and Dry Tortugas National Park! This trip will have a few differences than other ABP trips due to this partnership. Volunteers will spend two days of our trip volunteering with Team OCEAN at the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary doing marine debris cleanup. The rest of this trip will be activities facilitated by Outdoor Adventure, like kayaking, snorkeling, and exploring Dry Tortugas.
- Beautifying Vero’s Public Lands
Social Issue: Environmental Awareness. For this trip, we will be going to Vero Beach, FL in collaboration with IRC Conservation, to volunteer and learn firsthand about environmental activism in coastal Florida. We will be volunteering with IRC Conservation, an organization which manages all public lands in Indian River County, Florida. We will be performing a variety of different duties based on what projects are most critical at the time of our trip.

Website URL where information about the institution’s immersive education programs is available:
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