Environmental Leadership


January 4th - January 16th, 2022


Pacific Coast of Panama


Environmental Leadership




Come explore one of our favorite locations with us! You will have the chance to see the contrast of the historical Casco Viejo of Panama City as well as the remote beaches of the Pacific Coast. Environmental Leadership is designed to equip students with the necessary understanding and skills to address complex environmental challenges in the 21st century. Students will develop their capacities to find common ground among diverse points of view, advance decision making that takes into account both scientific knowledge and personal value systems, and facilitate cooperation across social, organizational, and administrative boundaries. Through the use of core readings, field experiences, engagement with local stakeholders and interactive group discussions, students will gain a rich set of perspectives to guide their development as future environmental stewards.


  • In Country Transportation
  • Most Meals
  • Accommodations
  • Tuition
  • Course Materials
  • Local Excursions and Activity Fees

Not Included

  • Airfare and Airline Baggage Fees
  • Some Meals (roughly 4), Snacks, and Drinks
  • Extra Activities (like optional Zipline)
  • Travel Insurance
  • Surfboard Baggage Fee and Surfboard Rental

Brad Zaporski

Program Leader / Professor

Brads interest in being an educator started while working as a contracted guide to Medical Aid workers in Papua New Guinea. Brad filled his time there working with the International Education Agency teaching in tribes outside of the capitol city of Port Moresby. Subsequent to this, Brad spent a decade guiding on some of the world’s most powerful and remote rivers before settling in Telluride, Colorado. Those years as a professional river guide took Brad around the globe and ignited a desire to work with the existing forces of nature to develop clean renewable energy in his own community. It was this desire that set Brad on course to work with San Miguel Power Association, where he became the Chief Executive Officer in 2016. Brad is known for helping develop hydro-generation using existing dams and legacy infrastructure from the mining boom in the San Juan Mountains in the late 1800s. He was also the winner of the 2013 Best Solar Collaboration Project from Solar Power Generation USA for, at the time it was built, the development of the nation’s largest community solar project. Yet his attachment to water never waned and Brad sought a new goal and life lessons through the joy of surfing.  Now combining his love for the ocean, decades of professional trip leading experience across 5 continents, and the spark he found as a tribal educator, Brad has found a perfect application for these passions with Sea State. His primary motivation comes from the opportunity to work with the amazing students that SeaState attracts. Brad finds the ocean and the communities that surround it to be a powerful classroom and is committed to applying his passion to the benefit of the students.

Alizé Carrère


Alizé Carrère is a National Geographic Explorer, filmmaker, and PhD researcher examining the myriad ways people adapt to environmental change. In 2013, Alizé received support from National Geographic to conduct research in Madagascar, where she spent several months uncovering an unlikely agricultural adaptation in response to severe deforestation. This work evolved into a broader educational film project that has taken her around the world, documenting stories about people and climate change in India, Bangladesh, Vanuatu, Norway and the United States. Prior to starting her PhD, Alizé worked for Lindblad Expeditions for four years, designing and leading voyages aboard the 102-passenger National Geographic Orion. As an expedition leader, both on board the National Geographic ships as well as in her scientific research, her field experiences have afforded her unique insights about what true environmental leadership looks like on the ground. This expertise continues to guide her research and teaching as she supports the next generation of environmental stewards. Alizé received both her B.A. and M.Sc. from McGill University, and is now pursuing her PhD at the University of Miami in Ecosystem Science & Policy.

Course Objectives:

– Recognize global and local environmental problems and propose solutions to these problems using interdisciplinary thinking and approaches

– Acquire a balanced understanding of the knowledge, skills, and ways of thinking of the natural sciences as well as the social sciences
– Refine ability to make judgements, take action, and work in partnerships in the field to resolve real-world environmental problems
– Develop the communication and leadership skills necessary to raise topics for discussion and to negotiate issues at the community level
– Hone the use of visual communication methods and various media platforms for broader engagement and awareness