Choose one of four fascinating destinations in Africa or Asia and embark on a transformative journey with the The Most Vital Course of our Time.
This fast-paced introductory course allows you acquire basic applied skills, knowledge, and understanding about sustainability in a holistic way. More importantly though, it lets you do so through the eyes of key local stakeholders at your chosen destination. Dive into the life and culture of your host community, explore one of the major success stories of the developing world, and build lasting international friendships along the way.
The course builds on the Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) approach coined by UNESCO. Accordingly, we use an “action-oriented, transformative pedagogy, which supports, self-directed learning, participation and collaboration, problem-orientation, inter- and transdisciplinarity, and the linking of formal and informal learning”.
- Develop basic cross-cutting key competencies for sustainability that are relevant to all SDGs.
- Engage with key local stakeholders and experience applied sustainable development through their eyes.
- Participate in an eye-opening future workshop and join a vision-building exercise with a group of local youths.
- Explore sustainable development opportunities and challenges in a leading African or Asian success story.
- Broaden your personal and professional network, and build lasting international friendships.
The political and economic leader of East Africa, Kenya might still be most well-known internationally for the immense diversity and beauty of its landscapes and wildlife. But that’s only part of the story. In recent years, its capital Nairobi has become an epicenter for innovation. This is best seen by exploring the incredible tech startup scene with its dozens of accelerators, incubators, and innovation hubs.
One of today’s greatest development success stories, Rwanda is Africa’s prime study abroad jewel. The country underwent a breathtaking transformation since the 1994 genocide. A model for poverty reduction and economic growth, it accounts for the highest percentage of women in parliament anywhere in the world. And the streets of its modern green capital Kigali are clean, safe, and free of corruption.
South Africa has emerged from its troubled and turbulent past into a healthy democratic country and the economic powerhouse of the African continent. At the same time, it’s a great place to witness a society going through dynamic changes, as it can still be considered both a developed and an underdeveloped country. South Africans forge a new identity, strongly embracing their unique multicultural character.
The Asian Dragon is undergoing some of the fastest socio-economic changes any country in the world has seen. It is a major development success story with remarkable rates of economic growth since the start of massive political and economic reforms in 1986. But the lure of modern living has a deep impact on the traditional networks of family and community that continue to play a pivotal role in society.
The course is offered as a 1-week field course. All participants meet at their host cities (Nairobi, Kigali, Cape Town, Ho Chi Minh City). After a thorough in-country orientation, they embark on a week of action-oriented experiential learning activities ot study the SDGs in the local context.
Local expert introductions are supplemented by GEI’s global classroom virtual sessions and materials. Excursions showcase sustainable development in both urban and rural contexts and invite participants to explore through guided transformational real-life learning in the community.
The highlight for many consists of a future workshop where participants engage in small cohorts with groups of local youths in vision-building exercises. Topics derive from key local opportunities and challenges relating to the SDGs.
By the end of the week, the participants come together for a final conference where they present the visions they have built and celebrate their common humanity.
Dates, fees, and scholarships
The program dates are generally identical across our four program locations – Kenya, Rwanda, South Africa, and Vietnam.
|Program||Application due||Start date||End date||Fees*|
|Summer 1||April 1, 2022||June 5, 2022||June 11, 2022||US $1,570|
|Summer 2||April 1, 2022||June 26, 2022||July 2, 2022||US $1,570|
|Summer 3||May 1, 2022||July 17, 2022||July 23, 2022||US $1,570|
|Summer 4||May 1, 2022||August 7, 2022||August 13, 2022||US $1,570|
|* Early bird discount (10%) available until March 1, 2022 for all program dates.|
We value full transparency and no hidden costs. As a result, you won’t have any disappointing surprises when you arrive.
Included in your program fees are airport transfers, housing (twin sharing), meals (with 1 non-alcoholic beverage), activities, excursions, local transportation, full-time leadership and support, pre-departure advising, and health insurance.
It is important that you take note of what is explicitly not included in the program fees. This helps you budget. Not included are the transportation to/from the program location airport (including international airfare and taxes), visas, immunizations, additional beverages during meals, general items and services of a personal nature, medical expenses not covered by the insurance provided, and other discretionary expenses.
GEI offers scholarships for students with proven academic or extra-curricular merit. You can find additional information in the following blog post: Scholarships.
Our program staff
Our in-country program staff consists of experienced local education, sustainability, and program operations experts.
Application & credits
Healthy & safety