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Maymester in Galapagos Islands

Galapagos Islands Environmental Policy Expedition – This hands on policy and analysis program is focused on global environmental issues and sustainability. The expedition takes the students to the Galapagos Islands and will include instruction and analysis on aquatic ecosystems, unique wildlife in the Galapagos Islands, as well as the climate change legal and political regimes. There are no prerequisites required prior to registering or completing this course. In order to best understand global environmental issues, the program invites students to engage and learn through guided hiking and kayaking tours around the islands and snorkeling and scuba diving trips, all while living on a boat that will tour the islands. (Scuba diving is only available to students who are certified prior to the beginning of the trip.)


Preliminary Itinerary:

Date Activities/Course Assignment
May 10, 2013 On-Campus Pre-Departure Orientation
May 12, 2013 Travel to the Baltra Island
Board the Ship
Lecture on the history of the Galapagos Islands
DAY TWO: (9:00am-12:00pm)  (1:00pm-4:00pm)
  1. History of International Environmental Agreements (60 Minutes)

  2. Agreements on Climate Change
    United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change
    Rio "Earth Summit" (60 minutes)
    Kyoto Protocol (60 Minutes)
    Copenhagen (60 Minutes)
    Cancun  (60 Minutes)
    Global Emissions (60 Minutes)
    * 6 hours of instruction
DAY THREE: (9:00am-12:00pm) (1:00pm-4:00pm)
  1. Environmental Policy in the United States - US as the Model
    The Environmental Protection Agency History (60 Minutes)
    Regulation v. Legislation (120 minutes)
    RCRA, CERCLA, CAA/112R, CWA (180 Minutes)
    * 6 hours of instruction
DAY FOUR:  (9:00am-12:00pm)  (3:00pm-6:00)
  1. Climate Change Policy and Standards in the United States 
    Regulation of Greenhouse Gases (legal and legislative) (180 hours)
    Regional Agreements (RGGI, Western Governors, Mid-west Governors) (180 Minutes)
    Field Trip: Kayaking guided tour around the beaches of the Galapagos Islands in order to study the exotic fish and sea turtles.
    *6 hours of instruction
DAY FIVE:  (9:00am-12:00pm)  (1:00pm-4:00pm)
  1. Global Carbon Reduction Strategy United Nations Carbon Development Mechanism (60 Minutes)
    European Union Mandatory Cap and Trade Framework of System (60 Minutes)
    Impact on Emissions (60 Minutes)

  2. International Environmental Agreements Montreal Protocol - Ozone depleting emissions (120 Minutes Basel Agreement (60 Minutes)
    *  6 hours of instruction
DAY SIX:  (9:00am - 11:00am)


Field Trip: supervised nature hike and study of vegetation, such as the salt bushes and prickly pear cacti.

DAY SEVEN:  (9:00am-1:00pm)

  1. Study of Dominica Environmental Policy Environmental Framework guarding the Dominica Bio-diversity of Dominica (180 Minutes)
    Environmental standards  (60 Minutes)
    Afternoon Field Trip: scuba dive (if certified)/snorkel trip around the island reefs.
    * 4 hours of instruction
DAY EIGHT:  (9:00am-12:00pm) (1:00pm-4:00pm)
  1. Select State Environmental Policy and Standards California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and AB32 (120 minutes)
    South Carolina Environmental Policy Statutory (120 Minutes)
    Regulatory (120 Minutes)
    * 6 hours of instruction
DAY NINE:  (9:00am-12:00pm) (1:00pm-4:00pm)
  1. Public Participation in Environmental Management History (120 Minutes)
    US Community Right to Know Act. (60 Minutes)
    Public participation and activism in environmental policy (180 minutes)Field Trip: Visit Charles Darwin Research Station on Puerto Ayora to learn about the ecology of the Galapagos Islands and conservation projects.
    *  6 hours of instruction
DAY TEN: (9:00am-12:00pm)  (1:00pm-4:00pm)
  1. International Environmental Crisis Management Case Study; Prestige Oil Tanker Crisis (60 Minutes)
    Case Study; BP Oil Rig Gulf of Mexico Crisis (60 Minutes)
    Case Study; International transfer of hazardous waste (Formosa Plastics Corporation) (60 Minutes)

  2. Emerging Policy Issues Where the Global Environment and Energy intersect Natural Gas drilling
    method hydraulic fracturing policy, regulatory framework and proposed legislation (60 Minutes)
    Alberta Oil Sands (60 Minutes)
    Sustainability Studies and reduction of Greenhouse Gas Footprints (60 Minutes)
    * 6 hours of instruction
DAY ELEVEN:  (9:00am - 11:00am)


Field Trip: supervised nature hike and study of wildlife, such as giant tortoises, sea lions, penguins, marine iguanas and discussion of the environmental impacts.


General discussion/reflection on Galapagos Islands and environmental impact Studies

Field Trip: scuba dive (if certified)/snorkel trip and discussion of aquatic ecosystems.


  Return travel home


Meet the Program Leader

tommullikin Tom Mullikin will lead this group on a 13-day academic program to the Galapagos Islands. The Galápagos archipelago is world-renowned for its unique and fearless wildlife- much of which was the inspiration for Charles Darwin's Theory of Natural Selection. There are also a plethora of environmental problems plaguing the islands, some stemming from the pressures of world climate changes such El Niño, others arising from commercial fishing, and overpopulation, and many resulting from the introduction of species by humans dating back to the 1800's, make it an ideal site for international environmental study.  Studying in the Galapagos Islands will allow the numerous students who expressed interest in studying Marine Sciences an up close examination of marine life in their natural habitat. 

Mullikin has taught each of the above subject matters in the proposed curriculum at approved lectures to university students and faculty, before senior business and governmental leaders and in approved continuing legal education seminars.

Mullikin will be accompanied by a fellow non-teaching support faculty member from the College of Science, Dr. Colleen Lohr.

Frequently Asked Questions:

When is the deadline for application?

The priority deadline for this program is Friday, Nov. 2, 2012.  The general application deadline is Nov. 30, 2012, but some programs may be full by this deadline and so applicants are encouraged to apply as early as possible.

How do I apply for the program?

Applications for all short-term study abroad programs must be submitted via the online link at: https://www.coastal.edu/academics/international/studyabroad/application/.  Each complete application will include personal contact information, health form and participation fitness certification, acceptance of the terms of the study abroad agreement, statement of purpose, academic reference, and copy of your transcript, along with a deposit of $500 toward the cost of the respective program paid to Student Accounts.  Should you not be accepted for the program, your deposit will be returned to you; otherwise your deposit will be applied to program costs.  The priority deadline for submitting a complete application is Friday, Nov. 2, 2012.

When does this program take place?

This is a Maymester program and takes place May 12 - 24, 2013.

What is the cost of this study abroad program?

The cost of this program is $6,570 and includes:

  • Lodging and meals abroad
  • International Air and in-country transportation
  • Trip insurance

Program fees do not include: passport fees, immunizations, visa costs, airport parking and transportation to and from the Charlotte airport

Coastal Carolina University tuition will be billed separately at the rate of $290 per credit hour. Maymester tuition bills are due on May 9, 2013

When are payments due for the program?


$500 due with application

Second Payment

Dec. 14, 2012 - 1/3 of remaining balance

Third Payment

Jan. 18, 2013- 1/3 of remaining balance

Fourth Payment

Feb. 15, 2013- pay remaining balance

Final Payment – tuition only

May 9, 2013

All payments are to be made to the Office of Student Accounts for credit to the respective study abroad program.  The payment due dates are fixed.  If payments are not received on or before the due dates, students will be dropped from the program.

What is the refund policy?

If after submitting your application and paying the $500 deposit, you are not accepted into the program, your deposit will be refunded within two weeks.  If Coastal Carolina University finds it necessary to cancel the program, all payments made will be refunded.  In the event the participant finds it necessary to cancel, we will make every effort to refund monies paid, less the $500 deposit and any funds already committed to vendors for the program.

How many credit hours can I complete during this program?

CMWS 687: Selected Topics of Coastal Marine & Wetland Studies II (3-6 credits)

Does this course/program satisfy core curriculum requirements?

The course does not satisfy core curriculum requirements.

Are there any prerequisites for this study?

Permission of the instructor.

Are scholarships or financial aid available for this program?

The Horry County Higher Education Commission International Awareness Award is available to assist graduates of accredited high schools in Horry County to participate in these programs.  YOU DO NOT HAVE TO BE ACCEPTED INTO A SHORT-TERM STUDY ABROAD PROGRAM TO APPLY FOR THE SCHOLARSHIP.  To determine whether you have additional eligibility for financial aid during the Summer short-term study abroad programs, please see your financial aid counselor in Kingston Hall.  Scholarship applications are due in the Office of International Programs by Nov. 2, 2012.  The application for the scholarship can be accessed here: Horry County Higher Education Commission International Awareness Award, 2012-13   .

Do I need vaccinations to participate?

Coastal Carolina University adheres to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) recommendations.  Please visit the website http://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel/ for your destination.

What are the physical demands of this program?

No previous experience in the various activity areas is necessary.  However, participants should be in good physical condition and prepared to be active for the majority of each day.  Only certified PADI scuba divers will be permitted to scuba dive.


For More Information, Please Contact:

The Office of International Programs & Services

Geoffrey Parsons, M.Ed.
Director, International Programs & Services
843-349-2054 / parsons@coastal.edu
Singleton Building 119

Lori Patterson, M.P.S.
Coordinator/Advisor, Study Abroad
843-349-2684 / lori@coastal.edu
Singleton Building 119