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Given our increasingly global economy and society, the Department of Agricultural & Applied Economics strongly encourages students to participate in a UW-organized international travel program. While not inexpensive, these programs provide good value for your dollar, especially compared to non-academic, commercial tours. This is especially true for students who have never traveled abroad before, and might therefore be apprehensive about traveling to a country whose language they do not speak. Over 30 years of experience has shown that our faculty-led international travel program, AGEC 4280 – International Food & Farm Culture, provides the right mix of cultural immersion and academic connectivity for students to safely gain experience and self-confidence in overseas travel.
AGEC 4890 Special Topics: Study Abroad Preparation (1 credit) Spring semester
AGEC 4280 International Food & Farm Culture (3 credits) Summer
AGEC 4280 is a month-long study abroad experience offered as a faculty-directed study abroad program through the University of Wyoming, in conjunction with the École Supérieure d’Agriculture (ESA) in Angers [pronounced (awn-jay')], Each year, a group of 5-10 UW students travel to France with a UW faculty member to study the French agricultural system for one month. All classes and field-trips are taught in English, but students also get to learn and practice basic French one hour each weekday.
Classes during regular school hours (to earn 3 upper-division credits through UW), but there will also be numerous field trips to agricultural operations and agri-businesses, where students learn about the French agricultural system and see it in action.
On weekends, students take cultural field trips to Paris, Normandy, Brittany and the Loire Valley. Throughout the month-long experience, students live with host families, who speak basic English and are very excited to welcome you into their homes. Many past students keep in touch with their host families long after returning to the U.S., in hopes they might someday get to visit them again.
The city of Angers is located in the Loire Valley, which is considered the bread basket of France. A stunning variety of agricultural products are raised there, from beef and dairy to grains and fruit, as well as wine, cheese, salt, and other specialty products. Field trips include visits to sustainable agricultural enterprises such as dairies, cider-makers, specialty cheese-makers, and vineyards.
Classes cover topics such as: wine tasting, bread-making, beginning (or intermediate) French language (to help you interact more comfortably with French-speaking citizens as you explore the city of Angers during your free-time), French culture/history, and the French agricultural system.
Students will keep a journal throughout the trip and complete a group project about the sustainability of one of the French agricultural businesses, based on field trips to the agribusiness and conversations with the business owner/manager.
In preparation for the trip, students will take a Study Abroad Preparation class (AGEC 4890) 1 credit, spring semester. There are two portions to the this class, one is logistics, getting students ready to travel, what to pack, what to leave behind. And the other is giving students some more in-depth background so they will be better prepared to get the most out of what they see in France.
Or visit UW Education Abroad, keyword, “Farm” https://www.uwyo.edu/uwyoabroad/