Over the 2015 Winter Break, Union will host the New Zealand mini-term, focusing on environmental research and energy development.
The New Zealand mini-term is one of the most popular mini-terms offered at the College.
It was first spearheaded under the direction of Economics Professor James Kenney, but Professor Doug Klein will lead the program this winter.
The mini-term will take 30 students to one of the most remote countries in the world.
The nation’s ethos has been shaped by the easygoing and self-sustaining mentality of its population.
Professor Klein often ponders about the ethical aspects of making the trip more environmentally sustainable.
He expressed that a long-haul flight only adds to the problem of climate change, despite the environmentally-oriented intent of the program.
Klein has encouraged the College to carbon offset student’s air travel as a solution.
Students will travel over 2500 miles on coach bus during the mini-term, starting in Auckland, the country’s largest city, and ending in Christchurch, the country’s third largest city.
Students will work in multi-disciplinary teams on a research project of their choosing, assessing approaches to natural resource management.
Students will be assessed on their completeness of the team-project analysis which will draw from both conventional research and field research.
Students will also be assessed on their participation in group outdoor excursions, as an important part of the mini-term is willingness to take risks and explore the natural wonders and cultural aspects of the country.
The New Zealand mini-term will afford students the chance to explore the environmental, cultural and social issues pertaining to nature, renewable energy and electric power generation through interaction with representatives of diverse interest groups and various outdoor half-day hikes.