Environment and Sustainable Tourism in Costa Rica

With the Costa Rican Monteverde Research Institute as our guide, we will explore the Arenal Volcano and Cloud Forest Reserve. Participate in a sustainable family farm tour, rainforest day and night hike, and a day on the coast. We'll examine the practices and challenges of striving toward ecological sustainability in one of the most biodiverse areas on Earth.  

March 15-22, 2019 • Cost: $3,273
Class: SOC 252/HTM 317 (no prerequisites required)

Course Registration and Eligibility

Go to the Global and Experiential Center- Room 3, O'Connor Hall with your credit card or check payment. Make all checks payable to St. Joseph's College with a note in the memo line: “HTM Costa Rica” and the student name. In order to guarantee enrollment in the program, these deadlines must be met.


This is open to St. Joseph’s College students enrolled in SOC 252/HTM 317. 

Program Cost and Deadlines

All deposits are non-refundable . Failure to make payment in accordance with the deadlines could result in the office terminating the participant's enrollment in the program. 

$500 deposit, online application, and uploaded passport or proof of passport application are due on November 19, 2018: Allow at least 6 weeks for passport processing.

See Lena Grasso in Room 3 off the Student Hospitality Lounge with your payment. Make all checks payable to St. Joseph's College with a note in the memo line: BIO Costa Rica.

The price includes:

  • Accommodations may include rustic rainforest dwellings, hostels and hotels. Accommodations will not include air conditioner.
  • 3 meals daily within the country
  • Transportation within the country for activities scheduled on the itinerary
  • Entrance fees within the country for activities scheduled on the itinerary

The price does not include**:

  • Transportation to/from JFK
  • Additional increases in taxes and fuel surcharges at the time of ticketing
  • Additional activities or optional trips
  • Personal expenses such as wifi and phone
  • Currency fluctuation
  • Exceeding the airline’s baggage allowance


  • Friday, March 15: (If you have a Friday class, inform your professor of the program departure date at the beginning of the semester) - 4:40am flight from JFK to Costa Rica. Arrive in San Jose, Costa Rica in the morning and travel to the coast. Enjoy a sunset at the beach during your stay at a beach hotel. 
  • Saturday, March 16: Hike in the Manuel Antonio National Park and enjoy a picnic lunch. Stay at a communal field station (bunk beds) on a private bird reserve. 
  • Sunday, March 17: The naturalist guide leads you through the Monteverde Cloud Forest. Arrive at the Monteverde Institute and participate in a campus tour, plus presentation on Sustainability issues. 
  • Monday, March 18: Chamber of Tourism visit, lunch on a local farm, and coffee tasting. Night time bat-mist netting. 
  • Tuesday, March 19: Travel to wind turbines and around Lake Arenal. Discuss renewable energy in Costa Rica. Hike in Arenal Volcano National Park. Optional hot spring (not included in cost). The eco-friendly accommodations include green roofs, and food grown on-site. 
  • Wednesday, March 20: Optional early morning cow milking and yoga class. Tour of the eco-friendly bungalow accommodations. Travel to the lowland tropical rainforest of Tirimbina. Night walk. 
  • Thursday, March 21: Natural history hike in the lowland tropical rainforest. Cacao and chocolate tour. Free time in the afternoon. Closing discussion and dinner. 
  • Friday, March 22: Free time in the morning to explore before traveling to the airport. 
  • Saturday, March 23: Arrive at JFK at 2:20 a.m. 

Itinerary is subject to change.

How to Apply

Directions for applying online:  

  1.  Log in to the portal and check off private computer
  2.  Open up your email so you do not time out 
  3.  Click here for the application
  4.  Follow the "St Joseph’s Study Abroad Program" checklist 


Due to new government regulations, passport information must be provided with your final payment. If you need a new passport, apply immediately.

Without passport information tickets cannot be issued and delays with ticketing may create penalties and/or cancellations without refund. If you don’t have a passport, please apply for it and provide a passport processing receipt with your deposit.

A copy of your passport is due no later than December 5, 2018.