Independent Public Mission Schools

Georgian Court University’s New Initiatives in Global Education

Georgian Court University students recently traveled to Costa Rica to study tropical ecology as part of GCU’s global education program.

In recent months, 29 Georgian Court University students traveled, served and studied abroad in Spain, Italy, Ireland, Peru, and Costa Rica. The largest segment of Georgian Court’s growing global education program, however, is steered by faculty members eager to create opportunities abroad for students.

GCU students explored Costa Rica, among other places in the world, during Spring 2017.

For example, GCU students last spring explored the Spanish Civil War while traveling through four cities in Spain. Students studying English produced digital narratives as a reflection of their 80-mile hike across the Wicklow Mountains of Ireland. And in April, a biology professor and students trekked through the rainforests of Costa Rica to study tropical ecology.


“These experiences allow students to learn things that would not be possible to learn in the setting of a classroom,” one GCU traveler wrote after returning from Costa Rica. “This is real life experience on how to effectively communicate with people with a different language, culture, and upbringing. There is no substitute for a firsthand, immersive experience that includes aspects of environmental/ecological impacts, language (along with different dialects), and a whole new culture.”

Several GCU students hiked through Ireland’s Wicklow Mountains as part of their study abroad experience this year.

During the 2017-18 academic year, eight motivated professors will lead programs such as: “Multicultural Psychology in Italy,” “Understanding Competitive Business Strategy in Germany,” “World Wars & Holocaust” (Belgium, France & Germany), and “Sacred & Neolithic Sites in Ireland.”

“Their travels represent four academic departments where faculty are customizing and personalizing programs to provide students with life-changing experiences abroad,” says Laura Grodewald, director of GCU global education programs.