Study Abroad: San Jose, Costa Rica | Webster University

Study Abroad: San Jose, Costa Rica

Spring 2021: Inequality and the Environment: Coffee! (ETHC 2050)

Program Description 
This program is a short-term, introductory-level, interdisciplinary, weeklong study abroad experience that includes curricular and co-curricular activities focused on the theme of "Inequality and the Environment" and provides students the unique opportunity to visit Costa Rica over spring break.

The course will involve tours, visits to organizations, guest speakers, as well as daily reflections, designed to help students see first-hand the ways in which social, political, and ethical issues intersect with environmental ones. Students will learn about the injustices, as well as the economic opportunities, related to coffee production by talking with people who grow, sell, and harvest coffee. In order to get a sense of the ways in which coffee relates to environmental conservation efforts, students will also have the opportunity to experience Costa Rica's diverse ecosystems through short day-trips to the beach and the rainforest.

Program Highlights

  • Visit the United Nations, grassroots organizations, a big cat conservation project, and more
  • Talk with people who grow, sell, and harvest coffee
  • Day trips to volcanos, the rainforest, waterfalls, and the beach

Travel dates: Friday, March 5 - Saturday, March 13.
St. Louis class meeting dates: TBA

ETHC 2050: Inequality and the Environment: Coffee! - 1 credit hour [GCP:ETH]
Faculty Leader: Kate Parsons, Danielle MacCartney
Growing awareness of climate change has led to increasing recognition that human rights and environmental sustainability are inextricably linked. Human rights advocates contend that climate change threatens fundamental rights to health, livelihood, and property, while also infringing on indigenous rights to culture and profoundly affecting the global poor. This course offers students the unique opportunity to study the overlap between human rights work and environmental sustainability, while they gain practical experience in environmental justice studies.

Costa Rica wants to be single-use plastic and carbon free:

Program Flyer
ETHC 2050: Inequality and the Environment: Coffee!

Program Cost
Application Deposit: $100 (due at the time of application)
Study Abroad Fee: $175 (covers international insurance & ISIC card)
Program Fee: $1,475
What's Included: 8 nights of accommodations, on ground transportation and course activities, all meals.
What's Not Included: tuition, airfare, study abroad fee, passport, personal expenses.

Students may be eligible for the following Webster study abroad scholarships:

  • Next Century Leaders Endowed Scholarship Fund
  • Marilynne Bradley Endowed Fund for Undergraduate Study Abroad
  • Dr. Roy Tamashiro Endowed Travel Scholarship

For a complete list of available scholarships along with eligibility and requirements, please reference the Study Abroad scholarship website.

Fall Break Scholarship Deadline - November 15, 2020

Application Process
Application Deadline:  November 15, 2020

To apply, follow these steps:
1) Ensure you meet the study abroad eligibility requirements
2) Start an application via the Webster online application system
3) The application will ask you to fill out a number of forms, pay the $100 study abroad deposit*, write a brief statement of purpose, and submit a passport sized photo.

*The $100 application deposit is refundable to if ALL of the following conditions are met:
1) Student attends the program 
2) Student completes the pre and post-study abroad surveys
3) Student does not have any outstanding program charges.


Costa Rica
Flowers in Costa Rica


Costa Rican flowers
Costa Rican landscape