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Penn State Goes GREENer

Whether it’s by attending football games and tailgates, raising prodigious amounts of money for pediatric cancer research, or by going hard just about every weekend, we Penn Staters really know how to keep ourselves busy. Sometimes it’s hard to keep track of the more than 900 clubs and organizations affiliated with Penn State, especially when there are so many cool ones. But, don’t sweat, I’ll give you the lowdown on one of Penn State’s newest initiatives that you should definitely keep a watch for: The GREEN Program.

The GREEN Program is a short-term study abroad program offered in Costa Rica that focuses on learning by doing. GREEN stands for Global Renewable Energy Education Network and the program was founded just four years ago by three Rutgers students. Throughout their twelve-day stay, students have the opportunity to visit clean energy facilities and learn from operators themselves. Participants learn about many clean energies including wind, solar, biomass, and hydroelectric all while exploring Costa Rica and meeting students from all across America. The program culminates with a group capstone project presentation viewed by several hot shots in the energy industry.

Even though the days are pretty packed with visits and information sessions at various energy facilities (which still actually sounds pretty awesome), students have a decent amount of leisure time after their planned activities for cultural or adventure activities.

When scrolling through the itinerary, I saw the word fiesta multiple times. I think a lot of us could roll with that. Also, who wouldn’t be down for some merengue dance lessons and zip-lining? For the venturesome student, there are multiple opportunities for hiking, rafting, kayaking, and even jungle watching. And if you tire yourself out from all the adventure or if you’re just lazy (me), you can always hit up some mud baths or hot springs and get a spa treatment.

Amanda Murphy, a junior Environmental Systems Engineering major and  participant of the program last year, loved it so much that she along with three other students decided to become a PSU ambassador of the program.

“The GREEN Program completely exceeded my expectations,” Murphy said. “Being in Costa Rica with other students who shared my passion for renewable energies made me realize that we can change the world. I learned so much; it was the perfect blend of education, culture and adventure. I have a huge new network of alumni and professionals, and I also made some lasting friendships,” Murphy said.

The other PSU ambassadors include Geoff Sincavage (senior; Energy Engineering), Anthony Talarico (senior; Energy Engineering), and Jack Ball (junior; Energy, Business & Finance).

If any or all of this information is really intriguing to you, you should be at the GREEN Program PSU’s first information session on Tuesday October 22 at 6:00 in Hosler Building. And if none of this information capturing your attention in the slightest and you somehow managed to get through this article anyways, there are rumors of free pizza at the meeting.

If you’re unable to attend that or have any questions contact Amanda ([email protected]) and/or visit The GREEN Program’s website.

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About the Author

Janki Patel

An awkward girl in an awkward world. Ke$ha is my role model. Nothing I say is meant to be taken seriously (unless it is).

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