"The link between China’s booming economy and deteriorating environment makes it the perfect place for both science and economics students to learn firsthand what it really means to be a citizen of the world."
The Pennsylvania State University is committed to international education and seeks ways to create a better understanding between our countries, between our societies, between our people, and better understanding of the shared problems that we have. The purpose of this "short-term study abroad course" is to connect two worlds – China and the United States of America- by partnering the Penn State University with Nanjing University and the Jiangsu State Environmental Protection Agency in order to promote global environmental stewardship.
This objective will consist of students carrying out on-line assignments over a two-month period that deal with both the environmental and economic realities of China (pre-trip), and a two-week practicum to study and perform hands-on research along side academics, field scientists, governmental leaders, and more importantly, Chinese students at both Nanjing University and established field sites in Jiangsu Province (trip). Students will be guided by Chinese and American faculty through a program of field-based research activities that focus on present-day environmental issues (like eutrophication of China’s largest fresh water body, Lake Tai, and the pollution of the Yangtze River due to industrial waste), round-table discussion sessions, and participant presentations. Additionally, possible solutions to China’s environmental issues like water and air pollution, loss of biodiversity, global climate change, over-harvesting of marine and terrestrial ecosystems, industrial waste, and watershed management, will be examined (post-trip). As an indirect benefit students will also experience the biodiversity, biogeography, culture, politics, economics, and history of this region.
In her quest to explore and educate others about the biodiversity, biocomplexity, and need for preservation of our world biomes, Dr. Jacqueline McLaughlin, Assistant Professor of Biology at Penn State University (Lehigh Valley), will lead this field course expedition in which participants can earn undergraduate or graduate credits.