Integrating Marketing & Sustainable Tourism: Choco Region & Galapagos

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Program Dates

Postponed to Summer 2024

Program Overview

This hands on, 6-week interdisciplinary course allows students to learn about biodiversity conservation, local cultural preservation, sustainable tourism, and marketing. Work with faculty from the Universidad San Francisco in Quito and the Galapagos as well as staff from the Santa Lucía Lodge in the highlands  to create a marketing campaign that will increase local tourism while maintaining the character and operations of the lodge.

Program Eligibility & Admission

  • Open to rising sophomores, juniors, and seniors.
  • Recommended for Marketing Communication and Business in Creative Enterprises majors as well as Environmental Studies minors.
  • PHYSICAL REQUIREMENTS - This program requires students to hike around the Santa Lucia Lodge as well as walk extensively around Quito and the Galapagos Islands. Students with any concerns regarding their physical ability to participate should reach out to abroad [at] (abroad[at]emerson[dot]edu) as soon as possible to inquire about the potential for program accommodations.

Course Information

This program is offered for a total of 8 credits. Students will be required to be enrolled by Emerson College in the following two courses:

  • MK 371 - Special Topics in Marketing Communication (4 credits)
  • IN 355 - Environmental Marketing Communication (4 credits)

Academic Highlights

  • This course will cover many topics, including the history of land tenure in Ecuador, sustainable tourism, biodiversity conservation, ecosystem services, and marketing.
  • The focus will be on a real-world marketing campaign project with a real client. If successful, students may actually see their marketing ideas implemented.
  • The program includes a mix of classwork, fieldwork, and work with a client. Expect to be challenged!

Cultural Highlights

  • Spend the first two weeks in Quito, located in the Andes at 9,000 feet above sea level. Tour the city and its environs and learn about the history of Ecuador’s capital.
  • Spend five days exploring the cloud forest west of the capital at Santa Lucía Lodge. This part of the class will require a hike to get to the lodge as well as subsequent hikes thereafter. Bring sturdy shoes, backpacks, rain gear, sunscreen, and bug repellent.
  • Fly to the stunning Galapagos Islands, made famous by Charles Darwin for the theory of evolution, for boating  and snorkeling.

Cost & Inclusions

Program Fee: $10,500

Included in Program Fee

  • Tuition (8 credits @ $800/credit)
  • Registration Fee
  • Housing (host family stays in Quito, eco-lodge in Santa Lucia, and hotel in Galapagos)
  • Airport pick-up
  • Two meals per day as well as welcome and farewell meals
  • Travel to/from Galapagos, park entrance fees, immigration cards

Not Included in Program Fee

  • Round-trip airfare to/from Quito (Est. $1,200)
  • Airport drop-off for return flight
  • Some meals and incidental or personal expenses
  • Passports (or visas, if required)
  • International Health Insurance*

*May be waived by those with alternate comparable insurance.

*Health Insurance Coverage: Participants must have an insurance plan that provides coverage while abroad. If you feel your current insurance is not adequate, please research a plan that is.

For information on Supplemental Health Plans, please visit our Health Insurance Requirements page.

Subject to change.