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The World is Our Classroom

This past May, six Eastern education students traveled to London, England, on a 10-day global field course to learn about the British education system. During their stay, students visited six primary, secondary and special needs schools in the diverse, inner-city areas of East London. During their experience, students observed and interacted with British students; attended presentations and interviews with school administrators from the British education system; worked with high poverty, second language learners; and met with British teachers and student-teachers to discuss teaching strategies and challenges.

Poland and Hungary on a multi-credit global field course titled "The Nazi Aftermath in Central Europe: History, Media and the Holocaust," from May 15-June 1. Students investigated how the Holocaust is represented by the present-day Polish and Hungarian media; met with major media, embassy officials and historians; and visited historical and cultural sites, including the Warsaw Ghetto, Auschwitz-Birchenau Concentration Camp, Krakow's Kazimierz Jewish Quarter and Budapest's Dohany Synagogue.

Tropical Rainforests in Costa Rica
This past May, 14 students took a 12-day field course in Costa Rica to study tropical biology. The trip focused on the basic aspects of tropical rainforest ecology and the natural history of tropical organisms. This course is among Eastern's most popular global field courses, and has been offered by the Biology Department since 1968. As part of their research, students worked in small groups to complete projects and discussed literature relating to tropical rainforest ecosystems. Other topics observed during the trip included the peculiarities of tropical agriculture, the socioeconomic consequences of development in the tropics, and tropical ecosystem conservation.

The group also enjoyed a tour of Costa Rica, where they hiked on the base of an active volcano, and visited a pineapple plantation, an abandoned cacao (chocolate) plantation, and the premier tropical biology research station in the Western Hemisphere, La Selva Biological Research Station.

Students Take a Global Field Course to Zurich and London
From May 17-28, eight students traveled to Zurich, Switzerland, and London, England, on a global field course to learn about the cities' business practices, marketing approaches and cultural history. Along with visiting cultural sites such as the National Museum of Zurich and the Globe Theatre in London, students toured several businesses, including Roche Diagnostics, London Metal Exchange, Chelsea Football Club and the BBC.

Eastern Students Take Field Excursion throughout Arizona
In May 2014, 16 environmental earth science (EES) students took a 12-day field excursion throughout Arizona. The excursion, a three-credit summer course, brought the students to a number of national parks and geological wonders for an up-close look at the region's geology, geomorphology, natural resources, environmental science and Native American heritage.

Some of the destinations included the Grand Canyon, Meteor Crater, Salt River Canyon, Saguaro National Park, the Santa Catalina Mountains, Montezuma Castle National Monument and more. The students' activities included hands-on learning, student projects, presentations and educational hikes throughout the Grand Canyon State.

Eastern Takes Two "Alternative Breaks" During Spring Recess
This past spring recess, Eastern students participated in two "alternative break" trips. Both trips lasted a week in March; one group volunteered with the Generous Gardens Project in Greenville, SC, and the other volunteered in the Natchaug State Forest in Eastford, CT. Seven students worked with the Generous Gardens Project, a nonprofit organization that grows and distributes fresh produce to anti-hunger efforts in South Carolina. Another group of seven students took day trips from Eastern to Natchaug State Forest throughout the week, where they built bridges and did trail work with the Connecticut Forest and Park Association.