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International Programs, Global Learning, Study Abroad | EpiCenter

Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies


On 150 acres of unspoiled land on Big Twin Lake in northern lower Michigan lies an Institute dedicated to teaching students to appreciate, understand, and protect the natural world in which we live. Messiah students can spend three weeks over J-term and in May or participate in either or both of the five-week summer sessions, learning about environmental stewardship from a Christian perspective. Au Sable has additional programs on Puget Sound in Washington, in Costa Rica, and India.

** For additional information, visit the Au Sable Institute of Environmental Studies Web Site.


Program advisor
Dr. David Foster , Jordan 362, 717.766.2511 Ext. 6860

Goals and Objectives
Au Sable attempts to foster ecological knowledge, to integrate scripture with the study of the environment, and to help students learn effective skills and tools for practicing environmental stewardship.

Please see the Au Sable course guide for specific course prerequisites. While students do not need a specific GPA to qualify, each applicant is expected to have a strong academic background and an interest in an enrichment experience. Students are required to attend all Messiah-run pre-departure orientation sessions the semester before studying abroad as well as half-day reentry retreat upon returning to campus the following semester.

Students earn four credits for each course they complete. The credits earned at Au Sable may meet some general education and major requirements. Courses taken will appear on Messiah transcripts with letter grades. Students also can earn four Au Sable certificates: Naturalist, Land Resource Analyst, Water Resource Analyst, Environmental Analyst.

Internships & Research
Environmental Education Internships (September to November, January to March, and April to June) are available for seniors and graduates. Participants will teach Michigan school children about Indian folklore, logging history, ground water biology, and natural history.

Summer research opportunities are available at Au Sable's Great Lakes Campus. Please contact faculty representative, Dr. David Foster, for more information about research opportunities.

Costs (2014)
J-Term 2014: $2503-$2802 depending on airfare costs

May and Summer 2014: $2390

Application Deadlines
Applications available from Dr. David Foster.

J-term: November 1
Summer Sessions: April 15


Online Application

Existing Application


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Globalization Getting Started Safety Costs Pre-Departure Re-Entry FAQs Application