Sustainable Goes Global! MIST Students Abroad
Dec 13, 2012

The second cohort of students in UNT's Master of Science in International Sustainable Tourism (MIST) will begin internships around the globe in January 2013. Eight different countries will become home to the MIST students over the course of the spring semester. Some of countries included are Ireland, Canada, Italy, Costa Rica, Mexico, and the Virgin Islands.  Students pursuing this joint master's degree complete the first year of study on the UNT campus and the second year in CATIE, Costa Rica.  Their last semester in the program is an international internship in sustainable tourism.  This degree program teaches graduates to be able to meet the needs of tourism markets of the present without compromising the needs of future generations.

MIST student Erin Davis’ internship will take her to Terlizzi, Italy. She will be working at Villa Cappelli conducting sustainability audits, marketing, and community networking. She will also help the Villa open a new restaurant in the spring.

On the North American continent, Emily Sanger will work with the Chamber of Commerce/Tourism Board at Revelstoke, BC, Canada and with a Chatter Creek Ski Resort near Golden, BC, Canada to help them have more sustainable operations.

Megan Peterson, another MIST student, will continue her work in San Jose-Escazu, Costa Rica at the Holiday Inn. The Certification of Sustainable Tourism (CST) overseen by the Costa Rican Tourism Board (ICT), has evaluated and certified the hotel as a 5 Leaf Property, the top sustainable certification in Costa Rica. She will be assisting the hotel in their re-certification process, as well as other social, environmental, and economic projects.

Megan’s classmate, Kristina Blahová, has also found an opportunity in La Fortuna, Costa Rica at the Arenal Natura Ecological Park. She will be involved in developing a marketing plan that will focus on local tourist companies. She will also be responsible for the park’s educational program to “teach young Costa Ricans the importance of the natural world around them and provide a deeper understanding of how their daily actions have far-reaching benefits and consequences.”

Some of the other MIST students like Wesley Murack, who is headed to the Virgin Islands, and Tommi Howell, who is making her way to Ireland, will be helping large companies enhance the communities around them with sustainable development and practices.

When the MIST cohort returns to campus in May, they will present their final project findings from their internships on a global stage at the 2nd International Symposium on International Sustainable Tourism. This symposium will also feature industry leaders across the globe speaking about best practices to engage stakeholders about the importance of sustainability and “being green.”

Good luck in your research MISTers; we look forward to seeing how you will change the world!

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