Center for Climate and Sustainable Futures

Forests in the Land of the Thunder Dragon

Bhutan
Summer Session 1
6 Weeks
6 Credits
Summer 2024
Jun 2 - Jul 15
Closed
Program Costs
  • Tuition$7,250
  • Room & Board$4,000
  • Total$11,250
Application Deadlines
Summer 2024
April 1, 2024
Summer Session 1 Program

Forests in the Land of the Thunder Dragon

Paro Valley,
Bhutan

Explore the rich biodiversity, forests, culture, and dramatic mountain views of the Bhutanese Himalayas. Spend six weeks studying issues of conservation, forest management, and development, visiting ancient shrines, and surveying big cats and forests in one of the most fascinating countries in the world. Students meet SFS staff in Bangkok two days before the program start to explore the city and to ensure travel to Bhutan on the same flight.

  • Trek across forested ridges and high mountain passes, visit remote villages and monasteries, and camp under the stars.
  • Assess Himalayan Forest biodiversity utilizing camera traps, dendrometry assessments, bird counts, and more.
  • Experience Bhutanese traditions and modern lifestyles during a short home stay with a nearby family.

Academics

This academically rigorous program follows a six-day/week schedule. Each program combines theory learned during classroom sessions with field-based applications. The interdisciplinary curriculum is designed to help students actively discover and understand the complexities of environmental, social, and economic issues in Bhutan. Read more about the SFS program model.

Major academic themes include:

  • Mountain and forest ecology and conservation
  • Climate change
  • Geology and hydrology of mountain regions
  • Community forest management
  • Influence of Buddhist philosophy on conservation
  • Rural-urban migration
  • Agriculture and food security

Courses

In the Forests in the Land of the Thunder Dragon program, you will take one 6-credit course. This course is participatory in nature and is designed to foster inquiry and active learning combining lectures, field exercises, assignments, and tests. This course is taught in English.

Click on the
to view a description and download the syllabus.
SFS 3580
Eastern Himalayan Forests and Biodiversity
6 credits
SFS 3580

Eastern Himalayan Forests and Biodiversity

6 credits

The SFS-Bhutan summer program is a 6-week interdisciplinary, field-based course where students study a country and region characterized by dramatic mountain landscapes and rich flora and fauna. Traveling through Bhutan, our SFS group will learn about culture and history, religious traditions, environmental issues, and conservation policies. Students will stay in Bhutanese villages and trek across Himalayan landscapes to experience and understand local environments and rural livelihoods. Academically, students will also develop skills in assessing environmental problems, defining research questions, conducting field research, and communicating results. Students will learn camera trapping, forest measurement and landscape reading skills. Moreover, SFS students will come to appreciate the complexity of identifying and addressing conservation and development issues in a rapidly changing region. SFS partners with the Ugyen Wangchuck Institute for Conservation and Environment Research (UWICER), an international research and training facility in Bumthang, Bhutan and the Bhutan Ecological Society (BES), a Civil Society Organization promoting environmental sustainability in Bhutan. SFS students and faculty will collaborate with UWICER and BES to advance their research agenda in several priority areas, including forest management, community resource assessment, and development policy.

View Syllabus

Core Skills

You will gain practical skills in the field such as: GIS and mapping, species identification and distribution mapping, forest and biodiversity surveys, camera trapping and mist netting, quantitative and qualitative data collection and analysis, and protected areas assessment.

Field Sites

You will visit different ecosystems and communities which may include mountain ecosystems, subalpine conifer forests, alpine meadows, rural villages and small towns, subtropical broadleaf forests, high-altitude mountain passes, monasteries and sacred sites, and agricultural communities.


Other Bhutan Programs

Semester

Himalayan Environment and Society in Transition

18 Weeks
18 Credits
Spring 2024
Jan 30 - May 10
In the Field
Fall 2024
Sep 4 - Dec 15
Filling Fast
Spring 2025
Jan 27 - May 9
Open

More Information

Program Costs
  • Tuition$22,000
  • Room & Board$7,950
  • Total$29,950
Summer Session 1

Forests in the Land of the Thunder Dragon

6 Weeks
6 Credits
Summer 2024
Jun 2 - Jul 15
Closed

More Information

Program Costs
  • Tuition$7,250
  • Room & Board$4,000
  • Total$11,250

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