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Why Field Trips?

 Political ecology field trip

“Meeting the people living out the histories and cultures we have only read about has changed the way I see their world and mine.”

— Student comment on course evaluation

Field trips often shift students’ perceptions and attitudes about course content as applied to real situations in the region. Besides hearing from community leaders and professional practitioners, field trips sometimes involve real work: helping with research on an endangered species through observation and field notes, or helping villagers clean their vega (common lands) in exchange for  presentations on community history and issues. 

The four-week block immerses students in readings and lectures; the field trip immerses students in the landscapes, communities, cultures and ecosystems that populate the Southwest. With no concern about conflicting classes, field trips can span from one day to two weeks. 


 Political Ecology of the Southwest

Hear stories and perspectives from environmental activisits, pueblo residents, Los Alamos National Labority employees, and other stakeholders about 'militarized ecologies' in New Mexico. 

Sample Itinerary 




Cultures of Water in the Southwest

Discuss the cultures, history, and politics of water in the Southwest. Meet with water diversion project managers, hydrologists, and acequia organizations and majordomos. 

Sample Itinerary