How do I sign up?

You'll register for REC 478 Expeditionary Learning Practicum. This is a 1-credit, 2nd quarter course. We'll meet 4 times during the semester to plan and prepare. If you are a RPLS major, this class will count as a REC activity class toward your degree. If you're interested in taking this class for 2 or 3 credits, we can set up an independent study with your advisor. Students will help to create a short film about the trip experience.


How will I get to Mexico?

Students will have the freedom to arrange their own travel to Cabo, were we will meet and then travel to the trailhead. A round trip flight from NYC costs $400.

We will plan and discuss travel logistics in detail at our meetings. You would be welcome to fly in or out on an alternate date and spend some time exploring Baja independently. You could snorkel at the last living coral reef in the Sea of Cortez at Cabo Pulmo, swim with whale sharks in La Paz, visit with the migrating Gray Whales on the Pacific side, or learn to surf in Todos Santos.

You will need a passport in order to go on this trip.


What do I need to pack?

You will be provided with a detailed packing list. In general, you will bring items such as sturdy hiking boots, a wide-brim sun hat, hiking clothes, waterbottles, etc. Much of the backpacking specific gear can be borrowed from SUNY Cortland. Group gear, such as tents, stoves, and maps are provided by SUNY Cortland.


What is included?

The tuition fee covers all living arrangements and food from January 5-15th. It covers the costs of instructors, gear, rations, and the world-recognized leadership training curriculum that you will receive. It covers logistical and emergency evacuation support, as well as transportation to and from the trailhead.

Other costs: Students do need to arrange for a passport, and a small amount of spending money will be nice for travelling.

Scholarships are available through the Study Abroad office. Your financial aid can be used to cover the costs of this trip.


What will a typical day be like?

While we are on the backpacking trip, mornings will start as the sun rises. We'll be in small groups of 3 or 4 for cooking, and you'll make breakfast depending on what you are craving: from cranberry walnut scones to cheesy fried hashbrowns. After a quick morning meeting to discuss goals and navigation for the day, we'll split into small hiking groups. This allows us to travel easily across the landscape, with more time for individual instruction, conversation, and wildlife sighting. We'll hiking until mid-afternoon, then set up camp and take time to to relax, rinse off, and make a delicious dinner. At night, we'll have an evening meeting, with a short class, readings, games, and appreciation and stories of the day.