South Africa: Biology

Please note:  The next time this program will run is Spring/Summer 2021. Details below are subject to change. 

HOEDSPRUIT (Kruger National Park), SOUTH AFRICA — This three-week program provides students with field-based international experiences in natural resource and sustainability issues including an appreciation of the relationships between South African ecology, culture, and physical environment. The program is designed to teach students about the functioning of the Greater Kruger National Park Ecosystem including the natural history and management of wildlife and vegetation. Students will also gain first-hand knowledge of African history and culture as it pertains to natural resource management. Students will be housed at the Southern African Wildlife College and will interact with faculty, staff, and local students through lectures, discussions, field trips, and safaris.

Image 1 of 3 South Africa
2.0 GPA Required
English Language Requirement
Issue Friendly

Program Dates and Application Deadline

(3 weeks)


South Africa

Students will register for a total of 6 credits:

NRM 407: Natural Resources and Society (3 credits)

BIO 417: International Field Biology (3 credits)

Fulfills General Education Global Perspectives requirement.

Fulfills entire General Education Issues requirement. Reflection required.

Language of Instruction: English


Students will live in Rondavels (traditional African round houses) or safari tents

Cost and Scholarships

South Africa


Program Fee: $5,235


  • Round-trip fare
  • Housing
  • All in-country meals
  • Field trips
  • All transportation while in SA

Other Expenses

  • GVSU Tuition - 6 credits ($3,282)
  • Personal expenses ($250)
  • Additional Meals ($50)
  • Passport fees ($150)
  • ISIC Card (Optional) ($28)

TOTAL PROJECTED COST (Program Fee + Other Expenses) = $8,995


Students may fund study abroad by using financial aid, scholarships, grants and personal funds. A study abroad adviser can help you create a funding plan.

FACULTY-LED PROGRAM GRANT (Up to $1,500): All degree-seeking students who apply to their faculty-led program by the priority deadline are automatically considered for a grant of up to $1,500 from the Padnos International Center. Students must have a current FAFSA on file to be eligible. No application required.

James F. and Virginia L. Goode Global Programs Scholarship: The purpose of the scholarship is to reduce the financial pressure on students and their families and make a Grand Valley education accessible to students from all backgrounds. This need-based scholarship will ensure that financial need does not become a barrier to intellectual and personal growth for students planning to study abroad. MyScholarships:

Visit for additional information on grants and scholarships.


To contact the Financial Aid office, email with “Study Abroad” in the Subject line. Include your G Number and Total Projected Cost of the program in the e-mail. 

Non-GVSU Students: Non-GVSU students admitted for study abroad are not eligible for Financial Aid from GVSU. Check with your home school’s study abroad and financial aid offices for details on applying for financial aid from your home school toward study abroad program costs. 

Financial Aid FAQ


South Africa

Open to ALL majors.

2.0 GPA required. 

GVSU is happy to extend this opportunity to Non-GVSU Students.

Additional Information


Excursions include:

- Field trips to safaris

- Trips to local villages, and overnight stays in Kruger National Park

Already Applied

CDC Report

CDC works 24/7 to protect America from health, safety and security threats, both foreign and in the U.S. Whether diseases start at home or abroad, are chronic or acute, curable or preventable, human error or deliberate attack, CDC fights disease and supports communities and citizens to do the same.

Checkout CDC Report For South Africa

US State Department Information

The first step to an international trip is to read our Traveler’s Checklist to find out things to consider before you go. Pay special attention to our safety and security information and assess for yourself the risk of traveling to a particular country or region.  Some U.S. citizens with special considerations – such as students, women, and LGBTI travelers – may face additional challenges when abroad.  If you do decide to travel, make a plan for what to do if something goes wrong overseas. 

Checkout US State Department Information For South Africa

Contact Information

"South Africa was hands down the most beautiful country I've ever been to. The people, the scenery, and the experiences were unlike any other. I would have stayed an entire year had I been able to. If there's one piece of advice I'd give to future or current students, it would be to study abroad. It teaches you about the world and yourself in ways you can't even imagine. Take the risk - it's more than worth it!" -Shelby Proffer

South Africa

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