Environmental focus for US visitors
The opportunity to showcase the University as a study abroad destination for US students was realised last month with a visit by American academics.
A group of environmental specialists from 14 colleges and universities in the United States spent a week at the University in early July to discuss a joint course of environmental study.
Adelaide participants came from the Faculties of Sciences, Humanities and Social Sciences, the Professions and the International Office.
Organised in conjunction with an American body, the Institute for the International Education of Students (IES), the program gave visiting academics the chance to assess the University's environmental studies curriculum.
Robin Wagner, Deputy Director of Academic Programs for IES, said the week was split between formal sessions and field trips to Camp Coorong and the Waite campus.
"We have programs in nearly 30 cities around the world and the University of Adelaide is one of 150 IES partners," Ms Wagner said.
"However, this is the first time that a science faculty group has travelled abroad to examine one of our partner programs.
"We felt that environmental studies was an area of academic pursuit in the US that does not have as many students studying abroad as it could."
In the past decade, nearly 500 Study Abroad students from IES partner colleges and universities have spent a semester at the University of Adelaide, gaining credits towards degrees in their home country.
Ms Wagner said the visiting delegates spent two days in the Coorong, learning about local environmental issues, and also spent time with environmental biologist Associate Professor David Paton, who spoke with them about the challenges facing native fauna in South Australia.
Scientists at the Waite Campus also explained the latest developments in plant genomics and new approaches to irrigation.
"The whole experience provided a multi-disciplinary approach to environmental studies - exactly the kind of thing we would like our students to benefit from," Ms Wagner said.
Ongoing discussions will now be held to establish a joint course of environmental study for domestic and study abroad students.
Story by Candy Gibson
Open Day 2006
To hear more about Environmental Studies at the University of Adelaide, visit Open Day on Sunday 20 August, North Terrace, 10am-4pm.