Kenya landscape

January Term in Kenya

COMM 4589 - GCI: Conservation Finance in Kenya

We are in the midst of a conservation crisis. Nature’s ability to provide valuable ecosystem services to humankind is declining, and existing sources of funding are not enough to stem the tide of losses. We need new financing models and structures to support, protect, and rebuild the fabric of earth’s life support systems. This course is a new elective providing students the opportunity to learn about ways to raise and manage financial capital in support of environmental conservation activities. This project-based study-abroad course will be offered in Kenya during the January term. Open to all majors in the University, the class carries three credits and will be cross-listed with GSVS. Enrollment is limited to 24 students, with preference given to upper-level COMM, GSVS, and EVSC students. This 3-credit class counts toward the Global Commerce Track and for third-/fourth-year McIntire students counts  as a McIntire elective.For more information, contact Prof. Mark White (

Program Dates

Travel dates: Jan. 1-11, 2020

Who Should Take This Class 

The course is open to all majors in the University, with preference given to upper-level Commerce, Environmental Science, and Global Studies: Environments & Sustainability students.

Interviews with the Program Director are encouraged; contact Professor Mark White to schedule an interview.

Information Sessions 

Monday, Sept.  9, at 5 p.m., in Rouss & Robertson Halls, Room 256 OR
Tuesday, Sept. 10, at 5 p.m., in Rouss & Robertson Halls, Room 256

Application Process 

An online application  is available on the ISO website after students review the online Education Abroad Workshop information session.

Applications are due by 11:59 p.m., Oct. 1. Once admission is approved, students will attend several orientation sessions during the months of November and December.

A $90 application fee must be paid in person by cash or check at the International Studies Office in Minor Hall no later than 5 p.m., Oct. 1, or may be paid online until 11:59 p.m., Oct. 1. Online payments made on the deadline day will be marked as received the following day.


There are many ways for students to be able to fund their programs abroad. All undergraduate Commerce students who apply to any GCI course are eligible to submit a separate application for need-based McIntire private scholarships, provided by McIntire alumni and companies committed to making these types of global experiences possible. McIntire undergraduate applicants will be sent a link directly via email to the scholarship application for these McIntire scholarships within a few days after the application deadline. Decisions are made quickly, and students will be notified of their McIntire scholarship decision before the deadline for committing to the program. McIntire scholarships range from $500 to half the total billable cost of the GCI course.

Additionally, the UVA International Studies Office suggests many other sources of funding for your education abroad through local, national, and international opportunities.