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 Director of Student Success Mike Walker on the application form.
  4. Submit the application form to the Associate Dean’s Office (DE107D) by Sept. 21, 2018.
  5. Pay the required deposit for the specific travel course prior to registration.

Deposit and Registration

Once you have completed your application form, make the required non-refundable deposit with the Business Office 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 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. 24-29, 2018. Steps to insure you are ready to register for travel courses on time (Steps 1 through 3 below should be completed prior to Sept. 21).

  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. 21, 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. 21 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. 24
  • Juniors (56 to 86 credit hours): Tuesday, Sept. 25
  • Sophomores (24 to 55 credit hours): Wednesday, Sept. 26
  • Freshmen (fewer than 24 credit hours): Thursday, Sept. 27

Registration for Interim travel courses will be shut off on Friday, Sept. 28 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 2019 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. 21, 2018)
  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 2019


INTM206 Greek Mythology in Popular Culture

Course Leaders: Mary Donato and Leslie Haas

This course will explore connections between Greek mythology and popular culture (ex: literature, cinema, advertising, television, gaming, etc...). Students will visit various sites in Greece including Athens, Delphi, Olympia, and Mycenae. Each scheduled destination is rich in Greek mythology spanning from Mount Olympus to the Temple of Apollo and dozens in between. Weather permitting, an island day tour will be scheduled. EF College Tours will provide transportation, lodging, and local tour guides for an educational and immersive experience.

Estimated Total Cost: $4250

$500 Due at/before registration (non-refundable)
$1500 October 30
$1500 November 30
$750 (balance) December 15

INTM210 Easter Island (Rapa Nui) Art, Religion, & Environment

Course Leaders: Swasti Bhattacharyya and Dave Boelter

This travel course provides you with an opportunity of a lifetime: for more than a week you will live on the most remote inhabited island on the face of the earth. We begin our exploration in the city of Santiago, the cultural center of Chili, and after visits to Valparaiso and Vina del mar we fly to Easter Island. Once there, we explore the world of the gigantic statues (moai), live with a local Rapanui family, learn about life in the Pacific Ocean, and experience the immediacy of our impact on our environment.

Estimated Total Cost: $4900

$1000 Due at/before registration (non-refundable)
$1900 November 1
$2000 (balance) December 1

BIOL333 Island Ecology in the U.S. Virgin Islands

Course Leaders: Bob Brodmann and Brittany Dinkel

The study of island organisms and their interactions. The course is offered during Interim term and includes a travel experience in the U.S. Virgin Islands. The topics in this course include, Theory of Island Biogeography, Ecological Succession, Colonization, Ecological Release, Adaptations (gigantism, dwarfism), Speciation (adaptive radiation, endemism), Human impacts (habitat destruction, invasive species, extinction), and Island Conservation. Prerequisite: BIOL 163 & 164, or permission from the instructor.  Travel Fee $1400 (minus potential Stine funding) includes airfare, ground transport, lodging, most meals.

Estimated Total Cost $1610

$400 Due at/before registration (non-refundable)
$500 November 1
$500 (balance) December 1


MRKT353 Field Experiences in Sports Marketing and Management (Phoenix)

Course Leaders:  David Hodge and Ben McArthur

During this two-week field experience in Phoenix, Ariz., students will meet with marketing and management professionals at organizations such as the Phoenix Suns, Mercury, Rattlers, Coyotes, the Phoenix Open, and the Greater Phoenix Convention and Visitors Bureau. P/F grading. Prerequisite: MRKT 306 and MGMT 306.

Estimated Total Cost $2300

$1000 Due at/before registration (non-refundable)
$700 due October 31
$600 (balance) December 3


SPAN490 International Experience Barcelona

Course Leaders: Jared White and Annamaria Elsden

Immerse yourself in Catalan culture and the Spanish language during our three-week January visit to Barcelona, Spain. Try new cuisine, meet new people, and learn Spanish! Lodging and food will be provided by local families during the duration of our trip. All levels of Spanish, from complete beginner to advanced speaker, are welcome.

Estimated Total Cost $3400

$600 Due at/before registration
$1400 due November 1
$1400 (balance) December 1


OBVU 450 Slaínté! The Irish Experience

Course Leaders: Andrea Frantz and Annamaria Elsden 

The Emerald Isle has long held an air of mystery and intrigue for travelers. From its stories of the ‘Wee Folk’ and Banshees to the magic of its music and dance, Ireland is truly the place to learn about storytelling in all of its forms. This trip welcomes storytellers of all kinds and will emphasize the importance of learning and sharing the real stories of the Irish culture. We will spend the first part of the Irish experience in a small, remote village meeting its people, learning the customs, and studying the history of the area. We will then explore the rest of the country from its breathtaking vistas to its bustling cities. This is a travel trip for people with a wide range of interests because all academic areas are dependent upon great storytelling.  

Estimated Total Cost: $4000

$500 Due October 1, at/before registration (non-refundable)
$1500 December 1
$1500 February 1
$500 (balance) March 1