When I bring students to UGACR, they can not help but be transformed. The station [campus] has an air of excitement about it…you never known what wildlife might suddenly appear, what interesting researcher you will run into, or what new inspiring project is taking place. I see the UGACR field station [campus] as an ideal educational environment: a gathering of really smart, dedicated individuals who are making a difference and happy to share what they are doing with others… all this set in one of the most biologically richest places on earth! There is always something new to learn or see which keeps me eager to come back year after year with my classes. I also see the station as a model of sustainability and appreciate the option to offset our carbon from traveling in a meaningful way. The students favorite part is the local homestay, where they make lasting bonds and end up reassessing values and preconceptions. As an instructor, I appreciate the expert support I receive from the UGACR staff…no matter what happens, they are always there for me.
Jean Replicon, PhD
Biological Sciences Dept.
Santa Clara, CA
Lehigh University has been operating study abroad programs in Costa Rica since 1995. San Luis and UGA have always been an important cornerstone of our program. The UGA management and staff are extremely professional, friendly, and always do their best to accommodate us. Their facilities are first-rate and the immediate vicinity provides endless opportunities to study both tropical ecology and sustainable development. UGA's commitment to sustainability and their positive interaction with the San Luis community are exemplary. I recommend UGA without any reservations for your next study abroad program!
Professor, Department of Earth & Environmental Sciences, Lehigh University
Director, Lehigh Environmental Initiative
Director, Lehigh in Costa Rica Program
I first started coming to the San Luis Valley in 1998 with my Field Ecology course. At that time, the station was pretty basic and in its early stages of development. Later, it was purchased by the University of Georgia and it evolved into a high quality teaching and research facility. It is safe to say that my time at UGA Costa Rica has been transformative to me and to many of my students. The commitment to learning and the integration of the local community into that process has been invaluable. Some of my students have returned to Costa Rica to volunteer and continue their education. In other cases, their time at UGA CR has encouraged them to study Tropical Ecology for their careers. My own learning has broadened beyond what I could have imagined. When I first started visiting the tropics, I felt lost, for the ecology of tropical ecosystems was so foreign to me. Much of what I have learned about the tropics has come from the staff at UGA CR who have spent countless hours in the field with me, answered questions about something I have seen in the forest, and help me arrange my numerous outings. UGA CR and the San Luis community is now my “home base” whenever I travel to Costa Rica I cannot wait for the inevitable feelings of joy and excitement when I return to this special place.
Matthew D. Moran
Bill and Connie Bowen Odyssey Professor of Biology
Area Chair, Natural Sciences
Hendrix College | Biology