The School for Field Studies (SFS)

Provider

The School for Field Studies (SFS) offers field-based programs that revolve around environmental studies and research. The programs involve exploration of the human and ecological aspects of issues having to do with the local environments. Students assist SFS's global partners and host communities in their research, finding meaningful solutions to real environmental problems. Study abroad with SFS to have an experience of a lifetime and earn academic credit while making a difference in the world!

Reviews of School for Field Studies study abroad programs on Go Overseas

Programs from The School for Field Studies

Program Reviews

  • Elizabeth
    Age: 19-24
    Female
    Davis, CA
    Other
    Really Powerful Learning
    03/16/2015

    I don't think I have grown more in six weeks than when I was in Bhutan. It took me out of my little, conservative northern California bubble and filled me with new thoughts and ideas. My classmates love hearing my stories of monsoons, nights in the karaoke bar and directed research. This trip has also given me an edge and left an impression when I interview for student jobs and internships.

    How could this program be improved?

    More freedom. We got treated like little kids a bit too often.

    Photos:
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  • Cate
    Age: 19-24
    Female
    New Jersey
    Saint Mary's College of Maryland
    Unique and Incredible Experience
    12/12/2014

    I very nearly did not go on this program - first I suffered an injury and had to withdraw from a semester, and then the Kenya portion of the trip was cancelled due to civil unrest - but going was probably the best decision I've ever made. For the first time in my college career, I feel as though I've actually gotten my money's worth. The professors were (mostly) accessible and incredibly knowledgeable in their fields and the staff were welcoming and inclusive. Lectures were punctuated with all day field exercises that ranged from walking distance to camp to a three hour drive, allowing us to view a broad range of communities, and guest lectures from local experts and citizens. The school went out of their way to provide the proper tools for directed research projects, including arranging last minute camping, guides and rangers, and talks with experts in our field of research. The expeditions to national parks were the highlights, of course, and no one ever suffered a bad day where they didn't get to see something incredible. The campus itself is small, but the accommodations are much better than I expected, with (usually) hot water, running toilets, and a full-stocked kitchen to raid for bread. The only real drawback to any of this was the inability to go out into the community alone or past 6 pm due to safety reasons, which is understandable, if a little frustrating.

    If you are looking to work hard, play hard, and see East African wildlife in their native habitat, this program is for you. Come in with an open mind, prepare to be adaptable to all situations, and enjoy the people you're spending your time with, and you will have one of the greatest experiences of your life.

    How could this program be improved?

    Some of the academics could use a little more focus - sometimes it was hard to tell exactly what we were supposed to be doing, and sometimes things fell through. I also would have appreciated more day trips to areas farther from camp so that I got to see more of northern Tanzania. However, I do think that they did the best with what they had, and that's what is really important here.

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  • Rie
    Age: 19-24
    Female
    Odense, Denmark
    Other
    A challenging, cozy and exciting program
    11/27/2014

    I spent the summer on South Caicos, a small island in the Caribbean. Every day we got up early, had breakfast and would start with a morning meeting, where messages were given, and we played fun games.

    Every morning, I was excited about getting up - the program was always full of exciting mandatory and voluntary things - and I would participate in as much as possible. Sharking, turtling, hikes and so on.

    The first nights, it was almost too hot to fall asleep - but quickly, I got used to it.

    It was an amazing summer - living close to a group of people, who within such short time go from being complete strangers to great friendships :)
    I loved getting out in the field, which we would do many times a week. That's what I wanted out of my trip, escpecially, and that's what I got along with new friendships :)

    How could this program be improved?

    I won't say it is something to be improved as such, but I wanted to mention it - if signing up to the program, note that there will also be a lot of course work. Most days there's lectures as well as field work, and as it is only a month-long program, assignments given need to be done rather quickly.

    I really enjoyed the program, including the school work, so this is just to note that it's not only fun and games, but also school :)

    Photos:
    Swim test on one of the first days - before we started going out into the field, swimming, diving and snorkeling skills are tested :)
    Town history tour - the School for Fields, as many locals call it, is seen on top of the hill in the background
    Sharking - at night and during the day, students were invited to go sharking with the professors and interns. The sharks are measured and weighed as well as tagged and then put back out.
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  • Seamus
    Age: 19-24
    Male
    Lewisburg, PA
    Bucknell University
    Top-notch program...I highly recommend it
    11/20/2014

    Not only is this program run by very intelligent and personable faculty and staff, but also the students that participate in this program are one of a kind. This program attracts individuals who are concerned about the environment and desire to make a positive difference in the world, but more importantly who realize that the best change can only occur collaboratively. As a result this program fosters an academic work and living environment like no other. Although the academic schedule can be rigorous at times, the expansive field lectures and field research keep you on your toes so that you remain energized and enthusiastic throughout the day. Practicing sustainability is as much a part of this program as studying it is. At the beginning of each semester the program participants create and sign a sustainability contract dictating how they will best attempt to live their daily lives while in this program, in order to live as sustainably as possible. The resulting simpler lifestyle coupled with the tight-knit community of peers and faculty creates an enlightening experience that SFS alumni will keep with them for a lifetime.

    If you want to experience what living sustainably is like and explore a beautiful country, with amazing faculty and peers, then this is the program for you.

    How could this program be improved?

    Sometime classes 6 days a week can become very tiring. A lengthening of the program to create more full-length weekends might really make the program that much more enjoyable and also keep students being 100% productive through the end. Otherwise I wouldn't change anything else, except you should campaign to get more male participants. My program was 23 girls and 6 guys. A more equally balanced community would be more fun and more constructive on both sides.

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  • Emily
    Age: 19-24
    Female
    northampton, ma
    Smith College
    great experience, so worth it
    11/12/2014

    There are lots of specific parts of the program's structure that i woukd change, but overall the professors are knowledgeable and the environment is spectacular. The small size of the island keeps everyone interacting with the community and the scenery keeps everyone interested and engaged.

    How could this program be improved?

    Fewer restrictions on student behavior in the community

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