International and Domestic Travel Courses



All students wishing to register for a BVU travel course must:

  1. Read all the information contained in this document.
  2. Print the Travel Course Application Form from the Registrar’s Web Page.
  3. Complete the Travel Course Application Form, obtaining signatures of the academic advisor and Associate Dean of Students (Thomas “Dale” Scully) on the application form.
  4. Submit the application form to the Associate Dean’s Office (DE107D) by Sept. 22, 2017.
  5. Pay the required deposit for the specific travel course by Sept. 22, 2017.

Deposit and Registration

Once you have completed your application form, make the required non-refundable deposit with the Business Office no later than Sept. 22, 2017 so that you can register for the course during your specified registration time. If you think you may need a loan to assist you in covering the cost of the travel course, please consult with the Office of Financial Assistance no later than early September or the loan will likely not be processed in time for registration. All students will have a "deposit hold" until the deposit has been paid. This hold is released once the deposit has been paid. Consult the information posted below for the correct amount.

It is important to understand that deposits are non-refundable and, at any time following your registration into the course, you will be responsible for all unrecoverable payments made on your behalf for the course. If a course is canceled due to low enrollment, or if a student is not able to register due to the enrollment limit being reached for a course, deposits will be refunded to students.

Once the deposit has been made and registration completed, the balance of the course fees must be paid according to the payment schedule established for the specific course. Each travel course specifies a non-refundable deposit, as well as the payment schedule for payment of balances; students are responsible for paying close attention to the dates listed for the travel course they select.

Note: All international, Dean’s Fellows, and Honor’s stipends as well as any other institutional funding apply to the final payment for the course.

Registration for Interim Travel Courses is scheduled Sept. 25-28, 2017. Steps to insure you are ready to register for travel courses on time (Steps 1 through 4 below should be completed prior to Sept. 22).

  1. Make sure you are current on all financial obligations with the University: If you have any outstanding financial obligations to the university, they must be met prior to registering for Interim and/or Spring. Prior to Sept. 22, contact the Business Office to verify that your account is current.
  2. All transcripts from other institutions, including your final high school transcript must be recorded with the University: Transcripts from any college level work (AP, CLEP or 2 or other 4 year institutions) must have been received directly from the other institution by the Registrar’s Office prior to Sept. 22 for you to be cleared to register for any travel course (or any other Interim or spring coursework). Until all transcripts are received (including your final high school transcript), you will not be allowed to register for a travel course.
  3. Travel course deposit must be paid. The appropriate deposit for the travel course for which you wish to register must be paid before you are cleared to register.

Steps to register for travel courses

Once your deposit is paid, you have checked that your records (transcripts, finances, etc.) are such that you are able to register, and you have input your access code for the course you wish to enroll in, go to Beavernet and register according to the registration schedule. Beavernet will open at 8:15 a.m. each day for registration according to the following schedule based on the number of credits you currently have earned.

  • Seniors (87 or more credit hours) and Honor Students: Monday, Sept. 25
  • Juniors (56 to 86 credit hours): Tuesday, Sept. 26
  • Sophomores (24 to 55 credit hours): Wednesday, Sept. 27
  • Freshmen (fewer than 24 credit hours): Thursday, Sept. 28

Registration for Interim travel courses will be shut off on Friday, Sept. 29 at noon. At this time, decisions will be made to determine if any travel courses need to be canceled or rescheduled due to low enrollments.

Locations and Costs of Travel Courses

Buena Vista University is committed to offering students opportunities for a global perspective recognizing that global distinctions may be experienced throughout the United States as well as across the world. Regardless of location, Interim travel courses create opportunities whereby students engage cultural, historical, economic, geographical, and/or aesthetic experiences through which they are able to promote personal growth, enhance cultural sensitivity, and expand their world views.

Regardless of the destination of the travel course, Buena Vista University’s travel courses create opportunities whereby students experience other cultures first-hand. In so doing, in addition to specific destination learning outcomes, students will be able to:

  • Actively engage diverse communities, developing greater intercultural knowledge
  • Demonstrate greater intercultural competency appropriate to new settings and diverse communities
  • Develop greater understanding of the role of the world citizen and responsibilities world citizens share for their common global future.

Because of the institution’s commitment to assisting our students to experience global perspectives, the institution underwrites students’ costs to the greatest extent possible. You will see the total cost per person charge listed for each travel course, the cost to students (reflecting the amount underwritten by the university for that course), followed by the payment schedule for each course. Be sure to read all the information provided for each course.

Program costs for travel courses are the most accurate estimates possible. These costs are subject to change due to the rate of inflation and/or unexpected rises in costs. Occasionally courses may be canceled at the close of the registration period (late September/beginning of October) if enrollment is not sufficient. Similarly, if necessary, students may be given an option of increasing the amount they pay if unfavorable exchange rates are realized after the planning stages are complete. In such instances, all students must sign their agreement to the increased costs or adjustments in the experiences will occur to meet the original cost charged to students.

Academic Status

Travel course applicants are expected to be in good academic standing with the university. Students on academic or disciplinary probation will not be allowed to register for international and/or domestic travel courses.

Dates for Travel Courses

Travel courses generally consist of a minimum of 15 days of travel instruction within the Interim calendar. Faculty have the discretion to arrange travel for a longer period of time; courses may occasionally leave prior to the official beginning of the Interim session. Some courses may have on-campus time as well as off-campus travel time. Many courses require preparatory work the semester prior to the travel experience. Students are expected to complete all components associated with the travel course. Failure to attend the preparatory sessions may result in a student being removed from the travel course. If such removal is necessary, the student bears the costs to the institution of his/her removal for failure to comply with course requirements. Travel to South Africa typically occurs in May and June immediately following graduation. It is the student’s responsibility to fully understand the travel schedule requirements for the course in which s/he enrolls.

Unexpected Withdrawals and/or Terminations from Travel Courses

Students may experience need for unexpected medical or bereavement withdrawals from travel courses. In such documented cases, students will receive a refund of all recoverable funds; because of the need to commit funds months prior to travel, it may not be possible to refund funds in some cases. The student must provide the Associate Dean’s Office with appropriate documentation (doctor’s statement verifying the student is medically unable to participate in the course, appropriate documentation related to bereavement issue, etc.) along with the refund request.

If a student is terminated from a travel course any time after registration in the course as a result of disciplinary or behavioral problems, fees will be assessed as necessary and will vary depending on the course and date of termination. No refunds will be made and no credit will be awarded to students who are terminated from a travel course as a result of disciplinary or behavioral problems. If disciplinary or behavioral problems occur while a travel course in underway, the student will be sent home at his/her expense. Additional fees may be assessed in such instances as necessary.

Students are expected to travel to and from destinations with the BVU group as outlined by the faculty leaders and complete all required elements of the travel course for which they are enrolled. Failure to do either likely results in the student failing the course and may suffer additional penalties.

Campus Meal Plans

Students enrolled in BVU 2017 travel courses will automatically receive a meal stipend based on their specific meal plan for the required time away from campus. No application for these meal stipends is needed with travel courses.

Documents Required for International Travel Courses


Travel course participants must possess a valid U.S. Passport. If you already have a passport, check to see when it expires. Passports may be acquired with the required fee (usually approximately $135) at any county Recorder’s Office or online at the U.S. State Department’s website. Passports can take 8 weeks or longer to be processed. Plan ahead accordingly. See individual travel course descriptions or faculty leading said travel course for information on passport requirements for the course.


Certain countries will require an entry visa. Participants will be advised on visa application and picture requirements by travel course faculty sponsors.


Certain inoculations may be recommended or required for particular travel courses. Specific information on inoculations and where/when to obtain them will be given to participants from the travel course faculty sponsors as soon as the information is available.

Documents required for all Travel Courses

In addition to appropriate passports, visa, and inoculations for international travelers, all students traveling with a BVU travel course must provide which may be found on the Registrar website:

  1. Completed application form (turned into the Associate Dean of Faculty’s office by Sept. 23, 2017)
  2. Completed medical information form (required for International courses and highly recommended for domestic travel courses) (turned in to the travel course faculty leader)
  3. Off-campus Study Contract (turned in to the travel course faculty leader)

Travel Courses 2018

INTM202 Storytelling with Walt Disney by Land and Sea: Walt Disney World, Universal Studios & Disney Cruise Business & Media January Interim

Course Leaders: Henry Hardt and Jerry Johnson
The Business & Media Interim travel course examines the business and communication strategies of effective storytelling, and shares how “Walt Disney’s Way” can be used in any field of study or career. Our storytelling journey begins in Orlando, Florida, home of Walt Disney World and Universal Studios Florida and extends to the Disney Dream on the Disney Cruise Line. The trip will be from January 07 to January 24, 2018. Estimated cost: $3,600
Non-refundable deposit of $500 due at registration
Payment of $1550 due Nov. 1
Payment of $1550 due Dec. 1

INTM206 Holocaust Studies

Course Leaders: Peter Steinfeld and Dixee Bartholomew-Feis
The Holocaust Studies Interim 2018 Travel Course is designed to complement the Year of Holocaust Studies courses and ACES events. We will travel to Poland, the Czech Republic, and Israel. In Poland, we will visit the cities of Warsaw, Lublin, and Krakow; and also see the remains of the death camps at Treblinka, Majdanek, and Auschwitz. In the Czech Republic, we will visit Prague and Terezin. In Israel, we will stay in old Jerusalem, and visit Yad Vashem, see the Dead Sea, Masada, and the Roman ruins at Caesarea. The trip will be December 28 to January 11. Estimated cost: $4300
Deposit of $1000 due at registration
Payment of $1500 due Oct. 31
Payment of $1800 due Nov. 30

INTM220 Europe

Course Leaders: Swasti Bhattacharyya and Mary Mello-Nee
This interim travel course offers three weeks visiting and experiencing major and special cities in Europe. Each location will provide an excellent example of the rich heritage in culture, art, history, and lifestyle of the region. The itinerary includes visits to Amsterdam, Prague, Munich, Venice, Rome, Pompeii, Florence, Paris, and London. The trip will be from December 28 to January 18. Estimated cost: $4900
Deposit of $1600 due before registration
Payment of $1600 due Nov.1
Payment of $1600 due Dec. 1

INTM222 Cuba

Course Leaders: Robbie Ludy and Amy Barth
Within cities surprisingly frozen in time beats the spirited pulse of Cuba’s most valuable natural resource: its people. From the UNESCO World Heritage sites of Old Havana and Trinidad to colonial Cienfuegos, this travel course provides the opportunity for students to meet historians and scientists, athletes and artists, entrepreneurs, and musicians. In addition, students will explore this island nation through the eyes of local Cubans as it begins to open its doors to Americans, tourism, and expanded western trade. This is a country which is rapidly changing before the eyes of the world and to explore it at this time of awakening is a unique opportunity for students at BVU.
The purpose of this unique travel experience is to (1) connect with Cubans of all backgrounds; (2) learn about their everyday lives and examine the social, economic, political, and educational forces that have shaped Cuban culture; and (3) explore the beautiful natural resources of this island nation (e.g., floral, fauna, wildlife, aquatic life, local crops, etc.,) before western commercialization ultimately changes them. Estimated cost: $3600
Deposit of $1000 due before registration
Payment of $1300 due Nov.1
Payment of $1300 due Dec. 1

SPAN490 Costa Rica

Course Leaders: Steven Mills and Beth Blankers
Travel to the tropics with us in January! It will be warm, green, and we will even try and get to the beach! In January, 2018, we will be traveling to Costa Rica where you can learn Spanish in the morning, and experience the tropical country in the afternoon. It does not matter what level you are, you will be studying at a local language school and stay with families in the region who will provide lodging and food. This is an excellent opportunity to be a part of the life and culture off of the beaten tourist path. In the afternoons and on the weekends we will visit historically and culturally important sites to experience the Central America firsthand. The estimated cost is $3500, and this includes three credits toward the Spanish major/minor, plus two meals a day as part of the homestay. The trip is from 29 December to January 20.
Deposit of $1000 due at registration
Payment of $1000 due Nov.1
Payment of $1500 due Dec. 1

May/June 2018

OBVU450 The Brothers Grimm Fairytale Adventure

Course Leaders: Andrea Frantz and Miranda Pollock
Explore Northern German villages and immerse yourself in the birthplace of many of the fairytales that you know and love. We will follow the route of the brothers Grimm with its rolling countryside of forests, villages, and castles that inspired some of the best-known fairytales of sleeping princesses, red capes, pied pipers, and gingerbread houses.
Our trip will include studying the fairytales collected by the Grimm brothers and the legends that those stories were based upon. Villages include but are not limited to: Hanau, Kassel, Marburg, and Bremen. During the trip we will document our experiences and compose our own fairytale adventure. Estimated cost: $3200