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  • Locations: Bocas del Toro, Panama
  • Program Terms: Fall, Spring
  • Homepage: Click to visit
  • Program Sponsor: The School for Field Studies (SFS) 
Dates / Deadlines:
Dates / Deadlines:
Term Year UMass/IPO Application Deadline Decision Date Start Date End Date
Spring 2020 11/15/2019 ** Varies 01/27/2020 05/06/2020

** Indicates rolling admissions.

If you are applying to a partner program, you must check their website for ACTUAL APPLICATION DEADLINES. The posted deadline above indicates when your UMass Abroad application materials are due and the program’s deadline may be sooner.
Fact Sheet:
Fact Sheet:
Click here for a definition of this term Advisor: Cristina Sosa Click here for a definition of this term Who Can Apply?: UMA only - non-UMA students consult your study abroad office
Click here for a definition of this term Fields of Study: Anthropology, Biology, Coastal and Marine Sciences, Earth Systems, Economics, Environmental Sciences, Geography, Hospitality & Tourism Management, International Relations, Latin American Studies, Natural Resources Conservation, Science, Spanish Click here for a definition of this term Language(s) of Instruction: English, Spanish
Click here for a definition of this term Minimum GPA: 2.8 Click here for a definition of this term Program Type: Study Abroad
Click here for a definition of this term Minimum Class Standing: 2nd Sem Sophomore Click here for a definition of this term Housing: Residence Hall
Program Description:

SFS PANAMA: TROPICAL ISLAND BIODIVERSITY STUDIES (SEMESTER)

sfs panama


PROGRAM DETAILS

  • Terms: Fall, Spring
  • Credits: 18 semester-hour credits
  • Prerequisites: One semester of college-level ecology, biology, or environmental studies/science; 18 years of age
  • Application Deadline: Rolling admissions. Early applications encouraged
  • Financial Aid: All accepted students can apply for need-based scholarships, grants, and loans


OVERVIEW

Bocas del Toro, Panama is home to a stunning diversity of life, from underwater reef ecosystems to rich green rainforests, and the culture of Bocas is as unique as its environments. Go behind the scenes in this “paradise” and study the impacts of tourism and development on the archipelago. Take a look at local and national environmental policies, explore the island ecosystems, and interview residents as part of an in-depth field research project on sustainability issues.

PROGRAM HIGHLIGHTS:
  • Snorkel in the waters of the archipelago to explore coral reefs, mangroves, and seagrass beds as you study sea stars, turtles, rays, dolphins, and schools of tropical fish.
  • Visit the Pacific coast and the mountains of Boquete: Explore the Gulf of Chiriquí National Marine Park, take a canopy walk through cloud forest, and tour a sustainable coffee farm.
  • Spend a day in Ngäbe communities: Speak with local Indigenous leaders, visit a women’s co-op, and take a forest walk with a local guide.

SFS students live and study at the Center for Tropical Island Biodiversity Studies, once a beachfront hotel that sits among the slender palms and warm sands of Isla Colón lies the Center. You’ll take your classes over the waves of the Caribbean and among the surrounding rainforests and reefs. The laidback tourist hub of Bocas Town is a short taxi ride away, with access to shops, restaurants, and a vibrant culture that is as unique as the mix of people who live here.

RESEARCH THEMES

  • Climate change impacts
  • Marine protected areas
  • Rainforest biodiversity
  • Tourism impacts
  • Ecosystem health
  • Community livelihoods and perceptions
 

CORE SKILLS

  • Species identification
  • Underwater transects and quadrats
  • Tourism impact assessment
  • Scientific writing and communication
  • Basic Spanish language
  • Research design and implementation
  • Data collection and analysis
  • Research presentation
 

LEARN MORE

REQUEST INFORMATION

APPLY NOW


CONNECT WITH SFS

Visit the SFS website
Call the Admissions Hotline at 800.989.4418
Email admissions@fieldstudies.org
Read updates from the field on the SFS Blog
Follow SFS on Instagram and Facebook
Watch student videos on YouTube and Vimeo