UMCP Galápagos 2002
Who We Are

College Park Scholars is a two-year residential honors enrichment program for academically talented incoming students. Within CPS are twelve different specific programs, each with a particular interdisciplinary focus. The focus of the CPS-Earth, Life & Time Program is Natural History: the scientific understanding and appreciation of the natural world, and how that understanding aids us as individuals and as a society.

In the summer of 2000 the directors of ELT led their first field course in the Natural History of the Galápagos Archipelago. This location was central to the discovery of evolution by natural selection, and maintains much of its pristine wildlife and magnificent volcanic landscapes.

Students hike the Tagus Cove trail on Isabela.

The success of that class, GEOL 388 Field Studies II: The Natural History of the Galápagos Islands, encouraged the directors to return in the summer of 2002. The course was designed for CPS students, but was open to all. In the end, ten students (eight from UMCP, one from Gettysburg College, and one from Towson State University), were selected. Together with Luis Sangolqui Tapia, a guide from the Ecuadorian National Park Service, the UMCP Galápagos 2002 participants explored eight of the islands in the Archipelago.

Upon their return to the University of Maryland, the students and faculty assembled this website in the hopes that it proves useful to educators, students, and others interested in the Natural History of these islands. With the success of the 2000 and 2002 trips, the directors of Earth, Life & Time are enthusiastic in their plans for a return to the Galàpagos in the summer of 2004!

Students snorkel at Cerro Dragón on Santa Cruz.