SC 290: Renewable Energy in Costa Rica
Travels during the Summer
Renewable energy sources are essentially carbon-free and more sustainable than fossil or nuclear fuels. This course reflects the remarkable progress that has been made in the field in recent years. Our program is focused on learning through hands-on work. We’ll spend about one-third of our time in “the classroom,” studying renewable energy systems, their underlying physical and technological principles, their economics, their environmental impact and how they can be integrated into the World’s energy systems. The rest of the time will be in the field, getting our hands dirty, learning by doing.
While Costa Rica is well-known as a world leader for conservation policies and eco-tourism, the Central American country also stands out for its environmentally oriented policies and its success in mainstreaming energy sustainability into national policy. Currently, 99.2% of the total primary energy supply in Costa Rica is of renewable type, with geothermal accounting for over a third, hydroelectric dependency not exceeding 50%, and a very small share from fossil fuels (0.6% non-sustainable biomass, and 0.2% from oil). Costa Rica also aims to cut its net greenhouse gas emissions to zero by 2021, its 200th birthday.
Learn about renewable energy technologies for the developing World in one of the few countries in the region that have taken a concerted structural approach to the issue of sustainable development.
SC 290 students are eligible to apply for the following scholarships (among many other financial opportunities), some depending on students' individual circumstances:
- Science Global Experiences Scholarship ($250-$1,000+) from the Office of Science Engagement
- Back to the World Scholarships ($500-$2,000) from the Penn State Office of Global Programs
- Student Engagement Network Grant ($2,000) from the Student Engagement Network
- Schreyer Ambassador Travel Grant (variable amount) for students in the Schreyer Honors College
- Grant-in-Aid Scholarship ($500-$2,000) for students with demonstrable financial need
- Diversity Grant-in-Aid Scholarship ($500-$2,000) for diverse or underrepresented students with demonstrable financial need
- Africa & Latin America Grant-in-Aid ($500-$2,000) from the Penn State Office of Global Program
- Whole World Scholarship ($500-$2,000) for students traveling to non-traditional locations with demonstrable financial need
Next offered in Summer 2023
Dr. Miguel Mostafa, Professor of Physics and Astronomy & Astrophysics