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Studying Abroad Sustainably


At Miami University, we are encouraged to study abroad. Our horizons get broadened, we are better able to live in a more interconnected global setting, and who doesn’t want to stop staring at the same four walls for a while, so to speak?

39 percent of last year’s graduating class studied abroad at some point in their college career, and there seems to be a program for just about every major, minor, co-major, focus or discipline.

For those interested in sustainability, an experience involving the greenest cities in Europe awaits for you this summer.

The course is called Sustainable Cities in Europe (IES 399A and the optional IES 399B) and is open to all majors. It counts for four to six credits, depending if you register for the optional class or not.

The course crisscrosses Europe, biking, hiking, ferrying, and riding the train through Copenhagen, Freiburg, Paris, Barcelona and London, all from May 18 to June 7 of this upcoming summer.

The primary objective of the course is to “provide students with an experimental education opportunity to study five European cities that are leaders in urban-oriented solutions to climate change mitigation and adaptation.”

This course is the brainchild of Kevin Armitage, a professor of western studies who created it last year here at Miami University, patterned after a course done by a neighbor and colleague at Earlham College.

Armitage summed the course up as a chance to learn about one of the best ways to mitigate carbon emissions by living in a mixed, dense and urban setting. He described the course as solutions based, looking at model European cities and having students think and discuss how these solutions could be applied in the United States.

The course isn’t all work and no play, though. Evenings are free for students to go “play tourist.” There are museums and parks on the trip itinerary that allow students the chance to learn about these ancient cities and immerse themselves in a different culture for a few weeks.

Are you ready to have your horizons broadened in green cities? Do you want to be a better global steward and citizen? Or do you just want to get out of Oxford for a while? If this might be a Study Abroad course for you, contact Armitage to learn more and sign up.

Green Europe awaits!

Photo License: Creative Commons