New Zealand: Ecovillages (2019 Program)

A GVSU Faculty-led Program

  • New Zealand: Ecovillages (2019 Program) Photo
  • New Zealand: Ecovillages (2019 Program) Photo
  • New Zealand: Ecovillages (2019 Program) Photo

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Tell me about this program

Open to: All majors

*** PLEASE NOTE: The information on this page is for the 2016 program. Updated 2019 program information will be available soon. Program details may be similar, but are subject to change. ***

Auckland and Wilderland, New Zealand — Ecovillages and co-housing communities are planned intentional communities with a sustainability focus. These communities are found in both urban and rural locations and share an emphasis on both social, environmental, and economic sustainability. In order to achieve these objectives, these communities experiment with various ecological designs, permaculture, ecological building, green production, alternative energy systems, as well as methods of community building. Green communities like these are the fastest growing type of intentional communities in New Zealand.

This program will introduce students to the sustainability movement with an emphasis on hands-on experience. Students will spend a total of four weeks visiting and living at different communities and participating in their daily lives and sustainability efforts. While students will be visiting several communities, the two extended stay sites will be 1) Earthsong Eco-Neighborhood in Waitakere City (West Auckland) and 2) Wilderland near Whitianga on the Coromandel Peninsula.

When can I go?

Spring/Summer 2019  (5 weeks)

Where will I live?

Program participants will be housed in Auckland at a youth hostel and in the Wilderland community.

Who is eligible to participate?

Open to all majors. 2.5 GPA required.

Non-GVSU students are eligible for this program. 

How do I apply?

To apply for this program, log on to to begin your online application.

APPLICATION DEADLINE (2019 Program): February 1, 2019

Non-GVSU Students are welcome to apply. Please view Non-GVSU Student Information 

What credits will I receive?

Students will register for a total of 6 credits:

ANT 340: Culture and the Environment 3 credits*

ANT 308: Field Experience Abroad 3 credits

*Fulfills World Perspectives GenEd and a course within the Issues requirement.

Language of Instruction: English

How much does the program cost?

Program Fee: $4,989

  • Round-trip transportation from Grand Rapids
  • Housing
  • Meals
  • Field trips
  • All ground transportation
Other Expenses
  • GVSU tuition - 6 credits ($2,916)
  • Personal expenses ($300)
  • Passport/photos ($140)
  • Additional meals ($100)
  • ISIC - optional ($28)

Total Projected Cost (Program Fee + Other Expenses): $8,673

Financial Aid

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 FAQs


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.

Who can tell me more?

Faculty Director:

Heather Van Wormer
Anthropology Department
221 Lake Michigan Hall

All program information including courses, duration of program, dates, and other logistics are subject to change. Programs may be cancelled due to extenuating circumstances.