Update on Dominica

Update 1/29/2018

This is the latest on the Springfield research center, courtesy of Dr. John Hains, Director:


As you already know, the station and the island were devastated by the storm. Nancy and her staff have worked tirelessly to clean up in the aftermath and they have done this under the most difficult of conditions. The damage to the station was extensive. Nearly all of the roofs were destroyed or damaged. There are entire rooms that simply no longer exist. Some of our other buildings were destroyed. There is still not electric power, save for some small generators. The water is ‘running’ but the damage to the system makes it likely to be contaminated. On my next trip I will bring the materials necessary for testing the water.
The storm essentially defoliated the forests. Choking debris from downed trees and branches as well as soil and sediment swept over villages and even the capital city. The Springfield property did not escape this damage and has been altered in a manner that will probably remain at least for the rest of my life and for the lives of many of the others who live there.
At this time the station remains closed to visitors unless permission has been granted by Nancy. The damage has been surveyed by our insurance but we still have not heard from them with their results.
Slowly, the island is beginning to recover with power restored here and there. The roads, though badly damaged in many places, are mostly passable but care must be taken in many places. I have received notification from automobile rental agencies that they are operating again and there are some hotels again accepting visitors.
I cannot, at this time, give you anything but an uneducated guess as to when we will be able to open again. Nancy is far better positioned to make that guess but even then, I suspect that the timing will remain somewhat speculative. I will be delighted if the station can return to at least partial operation by June.
So that is about all that I can offer for now. When Nancy has the ability to respond I am sure she will give you a much better estimate and prediction.
Thanks again and best regards,
John Hains
Program Director
Archbold Tropical Research and Education Center
Springfield, Dominica
Clemson University

Update 10/20/2017

Due to Hurricane Maria, there has been significant damage to the research station and the rest of the island of Dominica. The 2018 study abroad trip will therefore be changed to the island of Trinidad. The credit hours, dates, and content of the trip will remain the same…we are simply changing the island. The 2019 trip is slated to return to Dominica as the island begins to recover from the damage. If you have any questions about the updated trip, please contact Dr. Adrienne Brundage at adrienne.brundage@tamu.edu


Welcome to the Dominica Study Abroad Website! In this program, students conduct field research at the Archbold Tropical Research and Education Centre, and other locations on the island of Dominica.  Individual and group research projects include animal and plant ecology, plant-insect interactions, biodiversity of Dominica, and marine and freshwater aquatic ecosystems.  Students design projects, collect data, analyze results, and prepare reports.  The program includes challenging hikes that allow students to experience Dominica’s diverse flora and fauna.  Students will also experience the unique culture of Dominica, and participate in activities such as snorkeling and marine mammal watching.


Update: As you may know, Dominica was hit by Hurricane Maria in September, 2017. The research station received substantial damage from the storm. We are asking for your help. The station needs money and supplies to rebuild so we can continue our research there, and it can provide once-in-a-lifetime experiences for years to come. I will update this page as I get more information, but if you are willing to help, please consider donating money (even a dollar will go a long way!) to the rebuilding effort.

To donate, Go to https://www.youcaring.com/nancyoslerarchboldtropicalresearchandeducationcenter-959021

Please consider also sharing this donation page on your various social media accounts. The more visibility we get, the better off we will be.

The station will eventually need supplies as well, and I will post a link to their Amazon wish list as soon as I get it. Thank you all for your help!

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