After participating in this program, I can say that SFS offers students some really unique opportunities. Much of the semester was devoted to experiential learning. This meant hiking through the cloud forest and observing first-hand the ecological processes we had learned about in lecture days before. This meant conducting wildlife research on camping trips during the program’s initial weeks. This meant conducting our own research under the guidance of passionate and knowledgeable faculty advisors. Students leave SFS with a new depth and breadth of knowledge, as well as tangible projects and skills to show for it.
Beyond academics, the Center for Sustainable Development Studies is an incredible community. The staff genuinely care about the students' experience and played a big part in making the semester so amazing. I would caution that the program is not for everyone in that there are a strict set of rules (curfew, substances, company at the Center, etc.) and students should go in with that understanding. But the experience is in every way worth it.