Faculty-Led Study Abroad Courses

Faculty - Led Study Abroad Courses

Email the Extended Studies Department for applications.

Maya Archeology Field School in Belize

When: May 26 - June 19, 2019 (Optional trip June 19 - 23, 2019)
Credit: ANTH 197, 4 credits or ANTH 469, 4 credits
Cost: $2,300 (course fee) + $400 (credit cost) = $2,300 [Optional Trip is roughly $400 in addition to course and credit cost]

City as Text: Prague

When: May 21 - June 1, 2018
Credit: HNRS 3697
Cost: $1,076 (course fee) + $375 (credit cost) = $1,472

Summer Study in Italy

When: May 21 - June 21, 2018
Credit: ART 397, 3 or 6 credits; COM 397, 3 or 6 credits; HNRS 397, 1 credit 
Cost: $4,360 (course fee) + $375 or $600 (credit cost) =  $4,757 (3 credits) / $4,960 (6 credits); HNRS credit is additional $125

Trek to the Himalayas of India

When: May 20 - June 12, 2018
Credit: ENVS 397, 3 credits
Cost: $3,325 (course fee) + cost of credit.

World Energy Project in Peru

When:  August 4 - 19, 2018
Credit: BUAD 391, 1-3 credits
Cost: $125 per credit


Financial Aid for trips:  Students must take at least 6 credits in the summer to POSSIBLY be eligible for summer financial aid.  for more information contact the Financial Aid Department. 

Maya Archaeology Field School with Dr. David Hyde 

 May 26, - June 19, 2019 (Optional Trip June 19 - 23rd)


Program Overview: This is a 4-credit course designed to introduce students to the methods used to collect and analyze archeological data in a hands-on field setting. The course takes place over the span of 4 weeks at a remote archaeological field camp in Belize, Central America. Students receive instruction in archeological excavations, making technical drawings, survey and instrument mapping, and basic field laboratory procedures at the Medicinal Trail Site. In addition, students have the opportunity to learn about the Pre Hispanic Maya through lectures and field trips.

Course cost is $2,300 plus $400 for 4 ANTH 197 or 4 ANTH 469* credits (*must have completed ANTH 107). Students must register for credit. Course cost does not included round-trip airfare to Belize, credit tuition, textbook, immunizations, personal spending. Students should plan on bringing an additional $400 if they wish to stay for the optional trip. 

For more program information including information regarding the optional trip, please contact Dr. David Hyde at dhyde@western.edu or at 970.943.2222.

For registration information and to request an application packet, please contact Western Extended Studies at extendedstudies@western.edu or at 970.943.2885

Meet the Professor

Dr. David Hyde Headshot

Dr. David M. Hyde

Lecturer in Anthropology
B.A., University of Texas at Austin; M.A., Washington State University; Ph.D., University of Texas at Austin.
Phone: (970) 943-2222
Email: dhyde@western.edu
Office Location: Hurst Hall 031A

City as Text: Prague HNRS 397

May 21 - June 1, 2018

An affordable study abroad experience in one of the world’s most fascinating cities!  HNRS 397 City as Text: Prague! History, Politics, & Literature in the Golden City (3 credits). Instructor: Shelley Read.

Explore Prague, the Golden City! This course begins with three classroom meetings in April introducing Prague’s rich social, political, and literary history. On May 21, the class moves to Prague for nearly two weeks of tours, lectures, museums, and firsthand discovery. Wander Prague’s winding streets admiring over a thousand years of original architecture; stand in Wenceslas Square imagining the passionate political upheavals of 1848, 1918, 1968, and 1989; cross the famous 14th century Charles Bridge for a guided tour of the world’s largest ancient castle; study Kafka, Kundera, Havel and other Czech writers then trace their steps throughout the city. This trip will also be filled with the quirky and unexpected, as only Prague delivers, as well as two opportunities for optional day trips to nearby towns and historical sites.

This course is limited to 12 students/ Non-Honors students are welcome with instructor permission.

Cost and Payment Information

The cost of the program is $1,450.  The cost breakdown is as follows: $1,075 course fee + $375 for the cost of credit for undergraduate credit. The price includes all Prague related costs, lodging, designated excursions, and activities.  Program cost does not include airfare, visa, gear, personal needs, individual travel, or other activities outside the established program schedule.  

A $100 non-refundable deposit is due on or before November 1, 2017.

A second payment of $350 is due on or before December 15, 2017.

Final payment of remaining balance is due on or before April 13, 2018. 

Students: You must be 18 years of age, with a 2.5 GPA prior to departure to participate in this course, and have completed 24 university credits.  Students who earned probationary academic status at the end of the spring term will forfeit the course fee and will not be allowed not participate. Participants must register for 3 credits and must remain on-site May 21 - June 1, 2018.

Applications are available in the Extended Studies Department located at Taylor 303 and can be requested by emailing the Extended Studies Department.

Interested? Contact Shelley at sread@western.edu for more information.

ENVS Mountain Resiliency (3 Credits)

May 20th – June 12th, 2018

Course Description:

Trek to the HImalayas of India PictureWhat is resiliency? Why is it an important part of sustainable development? How can we draw wisdom and knowledge about resiliency from diverse communities, cultures, and livelihoods? These are the core questions to be explored in this international, field-based ENVS course. The importance of traditional knowledge systems, socio-ecological relationships, and spiritual connectedness to landscapes will be explored through a place-based resiliency curriculum. Our group will travel to two mountain communities in the Himalayas of India, learning about the region, the culture, and a variety of sustainable development issues. The curriculum emphasizes the interdependence and interconnectedness between individuals, their community, and natural systems. This course will provide a unique experiential learning environment and reward students with new perspectives for approaching the environmental, social, and economic issues which face our global societies today.

Partner Organization: The Foundation for Contemplation of Nature   

The Foundation for Contemplation of Nature Logo

This course was developed in partnership with the FCN, a non-profit organization based out of Majkhali, Uttarakhand, India. For the past 6 years, FCN has hosted a variety of student groups, including students from the National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) and University of Pittsburgh. Contemplation of Nature has been developed as a distinct practice that draws from recent research in the field of psychology, neuroscience, and biology. The practice advocates a simple way of being with nature, and can be offered in any environment, from an office building to the forest floor. In the past, the FCN has combined a sustainability education curriculum, based in cultural and environmental studies of the region, with the practice of nature contemplation. The Mountain Resiliency curriculum for this course builds on what has been offered in the past, creating an experiential, place-based pedagogy in sustainability and resiliency. You can learn more about the FCN’s mission, values, and community engagement at the following website: www.foundnature.org

Abbreviated Schedule:

Segment 1 – Regional & Cultural Orientation (May 20th – 29th)

Our group will meet in New Delhi on May 20th. We will spend the night at a hotel in Delhi. A bus will pick us up early in the morning on the 21st and we will drive approximately 10 hours to the Uttarakhand Organic Agriculture Training Facility in Majkhali, where we will stay for the next two nights. This facility provides comfortable accommodation in bamboo cottages, sleeping two people per room. The students will be given the first full day to adjust at their own pace. The village is just a short walk away, as are the Foundation for Contemplation of Nature (FCN) facilities. After these first two nights, the group will travel to Pithoragarh. Students will learn about the Kailash Sacred Landscape Initiative and take walking pilgrimage tours within the surrounding mountain region. Additionally, there is a possibility of an overnight trip to a nearby high-altitude ashram. This week will give students adequate time to adjust to their new surroundings, preparing them for two weeks in a village homestay.

Segment 2 – Majkhali Homestay Section (May 30th – June 12th)

After completion of the trek, the group will return to Majkhali. The students will stay with a family from the community in traditional housing. A few years back, a group of 10 village families came together and formed a self-help group to offer homestays to foreign students. Each family can host two students, with all the families being in the same neighborhood. This homestay system has received overwhelmingly positive reviews from National Outdoor Leadership School (NOLS) students, who participate in a 10-day culture section in Majkhali as part of the NOLS India semester. During this two-week segment, students will spend time between their homestay families, the village, the surrounding forests, and the FCN facilities. Each day the students will make the short walk from their homestay to the FCN, where various activities and workshops will be administered. Time spent in a conventional classroom setting will be limited each day; the students will quickly realize that their homestay, the village, and the forests are all meant to serve as classrooms for this course. The content and flow of the mountain resiliency curriculum will encourage students to think about resiliency and sustainable development in new and interesting ways, with a variety of local case-studies enhancing the learning process. Additionally, a certified yoga teacher will lead us through a basic yoga course of the Yoga Vedanta Forest Academy founded by Swami Sivananda. At the end of these two weeks, students will have the chance to reflect on how the course shaped their perception of resiliency, global sustainable development, and nature connectedness.

Cost and Payment Information:

The cost of the program is $3,325 + the cost of credit.  The cost for undergraduate credit is the Extended Studies per credit fee and the cost of graduate level credit is the standard tuition rate.  The price includes all related costs, lodging, designated excursions, and activities.  Program cost does not include airfare, visa, gear, personal needs, individual travel, or other activities outside the established program schedule.  A $1,500 non-refundable deposit is due on or before February12, 2018.  A full refund, less the $1,500 deposit, will be made if written notice of cancellation is received by March 16, 2018.  No refunds will be made after March 16, 2018 nor will refunds be made to students not present for the program or for those who drop out after the course begins.  You must be 18 years of age, with a 2.5 GPA prior to departure to participate in this course, and have completed 24 university credits.  Students who earned probationary academic status at the end of the spring term will forfeit the course fee and will not be allowed to participate.  Students must register for 3 credits and remain on-site May 20 - June 12, 2018. 

A non-refundable deposit of $1,500 is due January 31, 2018.

A payment of $1,200 is due by March 1, 2018.

Final payment is due April 1, 2018. 

Applications are available in the Extended Studies Department located at Taylor 303 and can be requested by emailing the Extended Studies Department.  For more information on the course, please contact Dr. John Hausdoerffer.

Summer Study in Italy 

May 21 - June 21, 2018

Course Description for Pictorial Composition with Dr. Don Seastrum 

Pictorial Composition is a course designed to teach participants the application of two-dimensional composition elements and principles as they relate to representational imagery in narrative painting. By means of definition, within this consideration, narrative art can be work(s) expressive of concepts, ideas, philosophies or any number of content-texts. It uses the power of visual images to provoke thoughts, rouse feelings and stimulate the intellect. The work may call into question commonly held beliefs, relate stories, or challenge preconceived ideas. That which distinguishes Narrative art from other genres is its dedication to content-text expressed through visual form. Narrative art visually communicates content, through pictorial compositions, across time and circumstance, challenging the present as well as the future. In addition the course well addressing the nature and essence of those works of art including the aspects of process, product and response.

The courses will encourage each student to investigate her or his own vision of the world while gaining experience with the development of the narrative in the visual arts.

Credit: ART 397, 3 credits or ART 397, 6 credits.  HNRS 397, 1 credit available.

Course Description for From the Street to the Gallery with Professor Jennifer Wells 

Summer in Italy Group Picture

Course description coming soon. 

Credit: ART 397, 3 credits or ART 397, 6 credits.  HNRS 397, 1 credit available.

Course Description for Performing Northern Italy with Dr. Paul Edwards 

Course description coming soon. 

COM 397, 3 credits or COM 397, 6 credits.  HNRS 397, 1 credit available.

Cost and Payment Information

The cost of the is course is $4,360 ($4,110 + $250 non refundable housing deposit) plus the cost of credit.  The cost of credit is as follows: 3 credits $375, 6 credits 600, 1 credit (HNRS) $125. The price includes lodging, travel insurance, designated excursions, and activities.  Program cost does not include airfare, textbooks, personal needs, individual travel or other activities outside he established program schedule. 

A $500 non-refundable deposit is due October 27, 1017.

A $2,000 payment is due by or on January 15, 2018.

Final payment of remaining balance is due by or on March 9, 2018. 

Students:  You must be 18 years of age, with a 2.5GPA prior to departure to participate in this course, and completed 24 university credits.  Students who earned probationary academic status at the end of the spring term will forfeit the course fee and will not be allowed to participate.  Students must register for at least 3 credits.   Participants must remain on-site 5/21 - 6/21,2018. 

Applications are available in the Extended Studies Department located at Taylor 303 and can be requested by emailing the Extended Studies Department.

For information regarding the trip, contact the course professor, contact information below. 
 Pictorial Composition with Dr. Don Seastrum  
Performing Northern Italy with Dr. Paul Edwards 
From the Street to the Gallery with Professor Jennifer Wells 

World Energy Project in Peru

August 4 - 19, 2018

OBJECTIVE (Collaboration and Service Learning)

Expand the Texas Tech’s World Energy Project’s current efforts to two installations per year. The additional trip will be a cross-university effort lead by Texas Tech and Western faculty.

Recruit 10 students from AAPL accredited universities to participate in the July 2017 trip. Students that participate in World Energy Project will benefit from this inner-university collaboration in the following ways:

  • Inter-university collaboration. Partnering with another well-respected land management program. Working today with land professionals that you will be doing deals with in the coming years.
  • Inter-campus cross-disciplinary goodwill. An opportunity to exemplify and reinforce values that the oil and gas industry practices on a daily basis: community outreach, charitable giving, sustainable business practices and promoting development in a responsible and thoughtful manner.
  • Technical training. Students and faculty will learn about the practical aspects of solar power, from system preparation to installation and safety.
  • Microfinance at work. Having a hand in developing a microfinance economic market through donations of solar power systems to communities, which are purchased by individuals and paid for within 18 months.

TRIP DETAILS (August 4-19)

  • Trip to be led by Menon Billingsley
  • Depart Houston August 4thto Lima> Return from Lima August 19th  to Houston
    • Students will responsible for getting themselves to and from Houston
  • 1 week Installation community/region not yet identified
  • 1 week Post install excursion to Machu Picchu, Sacred Valley

FUNDING ($3,500 per student)

Program costs include

  • Airfare to/from Houston, TX and Lima, Peru
  • All in-country lodging and transportation
  • Excursions (i.e. Machu Picchu, Sacred Valley, Cusco)
  • Money per diem and/or meals


Participating schools may choose to fundraise on behalf of their participating students or choose to have students be solely responsible for fundraising.

Western will book all student travel from Houston to Peru, therefore participating programs will have to decide how they wish to transfer funds (see below):

In addition to travel cost per student, the student will be responsible for the following:

  • Airfare to and from Houston (expect $300 or less)
  • Course credit and insurance          
    • Students must enroll in at least one credit (but may register for up to three) at Western to be covered by travel and health insurance necessary for the trip. Credits will be upper divisions electives and transferable.
    • Course credit and insurance administration fees are as follows:
      • $125/credit
      • $250 in administrative and insurance fees

**All in costs for students ~$4,175 (1 credit)-$4,425 (3 credits)**

Adopt-a-Panel Option

This program is a way for students or program directors to raise money to help cover the  $3,500 per student cost (see attachment Adopt a panel WEP). This allows for solicitation of funds from family friends, relatives and industry partners to subsidize or off-set costs all together. This donation is tax deductible.

Fund-transfer options

  • Option 1: Direct to Western. Raise funds and have benefactors write checks to Western’s Foundation directly.
  • Option 2: Participating School Foundation to Western Foundation. Raise funds and have benefactors write checks to participating school foundation. Participating school’s foundation cuts a check to Western.

Payment Breakdown

$500                                       Deposit (non-refundable)

$1,000                                   First payment

$1,000                                   Second payment

$1,000                                   Third payment

Student Selection

It is important that participating students be the “right” students. World Energy Project is looking for students that will be fully committed to this program and will behave in a positive and mature manner. Respective Program directors should take care in selecting students.

  • Selected students will be required to have a short phone conversation with Terry McInturff and Menon Billingsley for final program admission.

The Office of Extended Studies provides students with the resources and tools they need to prepare for a healthy and safe term abroad. Because there are inherent risks in international travel, the university cannot guarantee student safety abroad.  Although Western takes every reasonable precaution to enhance the safety of its students, individual students must take primary responsibility to maintain their health and minimize their risky behavior. All students are required to sign an enrollment contract and waiver of liability to enroll in a study abroad program.

In addition to the health and safety information listed below, each trip has additional health and safety information available that is region specific.  This information can be found on the webpage for the trip. 


A study abroad experience, while extremely rewarding, can often bring health challenges as you adjust to new schedules, routines, eating habits, and cultural norms.  It is important to prepare to manage your health prior to departure and throughout your experience abroad. Remember that studying abroad will be stressful both physically and mentally. A healthy mind and body are essential for a successful education abroad experience. Please read the following points carefully to prepare yourself for any health issues that may emerge while you are abroad. If you are experiencing or have experienced physical or emotional problems, please carefully consider your readiness for an international experience. If you are experiencing emotional, eating or substance abuse problems, strongly consider deferring your participation in a program until you have the concern well under control. If you do intend to participate in the program while managing a health issue, speak with your doctor or counselor well in advance of departure to devise a plan for your ongoing care. 

Prescription Medication

When feasible, bring an adequate supply of medication to last the full term abroad.  Do not ship medications as they are likely to be held up in customs for an extended period of time or not arrive at all. Bring medications in their original labeled containers along with copies of prescriptions.  Know the generic names of all medications.


In some countries, immunizations may be required or recommended.  Check with your doctor as well as the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control which offers a study abroad and Traveler's Health section.

Students with Disabilities

Students with apparent or non-apparent disabilities will likely need to take special measures when planning a study abroad experience.  Appropriate accommodations and facilities may not be available in all locations, so discuss your needs with your study abroad advisor as far in advance as possible.  Your study abroad advisor and Western's coordinator of disability services will work together to assist you. Mobility International is a valuable resource for students with disabilities.

Register Your Travel

The Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) is a free service provided by the U.S. government to U.S. citizens traveling abroad. STEP allows Americans abroad to receive updates from the nearest embassy or consulate and allows the Department of State to better assist you in an emergency.

Staying Safe Abroad

  • Use alcohol wisely and never use illegal drugs.  Impaired judgment puts you at increased risk for accident, injury, and crime.
  • Do not walk alone at night.
  • Be aware of local laws and act in a responsible manner.
  • Never leave your belongings unattended.
  • Do not store or carry your documents and money together in one place.  Carry only the necessities to minimize chance for loss.
  • Be aware of your surroundings.
  • Do not display money openly. 
  • Be inconspicuous in dress and demeanor. Be aware of belongings that might be perceived as valuable to thieves.
  • Do not drive or hitchhike.
  • Be wary of people who seem overly friendly or interested in you.
  • Know your local 911 equivalent and other emergency contacts.

Communicating Your Plans

Always inform the on-site coordinator at the host institution and your family of your travel plans (destinations, itineraries, and how to contact you), even if it is just a weekend trip. This information is vital in case you need to be contacted in the event of an emergency. Needless to say, be certain to educate yourself about any destination you plan to visit prior to your departure.

In Times of Political Conflict

  • Make sure you always carry the emergency contact numbers for your on-site coordinator, the U.S. embassy/consulate, and the police.
  • Stay informed of the current political situation in your host country by using the local media. Consult the U.S. Department of State travel advisories. http://travel.state.gov
  • Avoid potential target areas, especially bars, clubs, fast food restaurants, banks churches, embassies/consulates frequented by U.S. citizens.
  • Stay away from areas known to have large concentrations of residents unfriendly to the United States.
  • Stay out of political demonstrations. Resist the temptation to satisfy your curiosity and investigate what is happening. Go to a secure location and watch it on the news.
  • Do not agree to newspaper, TV, or radio interviews regarding political conflicts or controversial issues. Remain inconspicuous.


The decision to study abroad is an important one, and the Office of Extended Studies encourages parents and families to support their student as they prepare for a time of exciting academic experiences and significant personal growth.  At the same time, we understand that sending a son or daughter overseas can be a nerve-wracking experience for any parent.  There are a number of ways that you can inform and prepare yourself, and your student, for this experience.

We encourage students to take responsibility for their learning experience, beginning with the selection of their program and the completion of the application process. Students learn a great deal of information about studying abroad and their particular program through our extensive orientation process. We encourage students to share information about their program with their family, but you will also find a great deal of helpful information throughout our website.

Safety and Health

When participating in a travel abroad trip, all students are asked to read the General Health and Safety documentation along with the additional documentation provided by their professor. 

While each student traveling should have their own health insurance, Western purchases travel insurance as well.  ATLAS is the company currently being used.  Click here for the brochure for Atlas and here for the detailed description of coverage. 

Please feel free to contact the Office of Extended Studies with any questions you may have.

Interim Director - Ami Anderson
Assistant Director - Dana M. Miller
Western State Colorado University
Taylor Hall 303
600 North Adams Street
Gunnison, CO 81231