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Field Studies for Sustainable Futures

July 22—August 4, 2018

Three young women at ropes course during Smith College's summer field studies program

Be a part of a small community of students interested in moving beyond "green" toward understanding what will be necessary to achieve a truly sustainable future. Learning and living together with a group of equally concerned and engaged people, you will explore how the spaces where we live, work and play can be designed to improve, rather than damage, the environment.

Program Schedule

Thinking and Acting Beyond "Green"

Dynamic faculty and staff will contribute to this two-week interdisciplinary program. We will approach the issues of ecological design and sustainable food from multiple—and sometimes conflicting—points of view to expose and understand the complexities and potential impacts of tackling (or ignoring) the issues.

The program is divided into two weeks of investigation. Rather than offering distinct classes in a traditional classroom setting, we will head outside as a group, collaborating with and challenging one another as our understanding of sustainable practices grows.

We will visit buildings constructed to the highest environmental standards and discuss their merits and limitations. We will investigate the food we eat, how it impacts the land, and how it is grown, produced, transported and sold. We will learn to think about food and food preparation in more sustainable ways.

Your adventure will offer many opportunities to connect with the New England landscape, including hikes at nature preserves, a zip line canopy tour and time to enjoy Smith's Botanic Garden, campus arboretum, the Mill River and Paradise Pond.

A Typical Day

7-8:30 a.m. Breakfast
9-11:45 a.m. Morning classes or an off-campus field trip
Noon-1 p.m. Lunch
1-4 p.m. Afternoon classes or an off-campus field trip
5:30-7 p.m. Dinner
7-10 p.m. Fun house activities that change daily
10 p.m. All participants must be in their room for the night
11 p.m. Lights out