UMD: A Globally Connected University

UMD-Summer: Iceland: The Land of Fire and Ice: Sustainability, Climate Change and Renewable Energy Systems (ENME)

Reykjavik, Iceland
Terms offered: 
Program Type: 
Credit Type: 
Minimum GPA: 
Non-UMD Students Eligible to Apply: 
Graduate Students Eligible to Apply: 
Language of Instruction: 

SU 19 Iceland
The looming negative consequences of global climate change are making it necessary for countries around the world to implement innovative and sustainable solutions to avoid ecological catastrophe. With its stunning mixture of geology and northerly location, Iceland, the "land of fire and ice" is uniquely poised to lead the charge. Today, almost 100 % of the electricity consumed in this small country of over 300,000 people comes from renewable energy sources. 

Through a wide variety of activities students will get to witness and experience first hand the innovative and sustainable solutions that Iceland has employed, as well as the natural wonders they are tasked with protecting. The course will explore the generation, use and impacts of both geothermal energy and hydroelectric power. Students will also acquire critical global capabilities in the area of technology and engineering by immersing themselves in Iceland's historically rich language and culture. 

More so now than ever, engineers must be prepared to combat the negative consequences of climate change, this course will help provide them the inspiration, skills and confidence to face those challenges head on. 

By participating in this program, students will have the to opportunity to:

  • Explore innovative solutions to global climate change
  • Analyze the generation, use and implications of renewable energy technologies 
  • Explain the many uses and benefits of geothermal energy aside from energy generation
  • Acquire an understanding of Iceland's culture and green economy
  • Compare and contrast the benefits and drawbacks of a variety of "sustainable" technologies

You must be in good academic and judicial standing and you must not have any registration blocks to participate in this program. The minimum GPA for this program is listed above.

UMD sophomores, juniors, seniors and graduate students are eligible to apply.

Prerequisite: Physics 161 or Equivalent

If you are interested in this program but do not meet the eligibility requirements, reach out to the program director (listed in the Contacts tab) to discuss your interest in the program.


After you commit to the program, Education Abroad will enroll you in the following three (3) credit UMD course:

  • ENME407: Iceland, The Land of Fire and Ice: Sustainability, Climate Change and Renewable Energy Systems (3 credits)

This course is approved for the Sustainability minor. 

The credit you earn during this program will count as resident credit.

Students will stay in hostel rooms with up to 3 other students, and will have access to private or shared bathrooms. The hostel is conveniently located in the heart of downtown Reykjavik, provides free WiFi and is close to tons of shops, restaurants and grocery stores.

Costs listed are for summer 2019 will be updated.

Need based financial aid and scholarships are available for this program.

Application Fee $50
Billable Costs
Billable costs are charged to your student account. They are due based on the Office of Student Financial Services and Cashiering payment schedule. Be sure to check your statements when they are available.
Education Abroad Fee $500
This fee is charged to your account when the application status changes from "Accepted" to "Committed." This fee includes Education Abroad services including registration, billing, advising, risk management, and pre-departure orientation.
International Health Insurance $43
Tuition $2,657
This fee is charged to your UMD account upon course registration. This fee includes: Tuition, in-country transportation, course related activities, group meals, and teaching services.
Housing Fee $750
This fee represents the housing provided during the program.
Out-of-pocket Costs
Meals (estimate) $300
Visa $0
Passport $145
Roundtrip Airfare (estimate) $600
Course Materials $25
Optional Activities/incidental expenses $100
Optional trip cancelation/interruption Insurance (estimate) $180

NOTE: If you are a non-UMD graduate student, you will need to pay a $75 application fee to the UMD graduate school to participate in this program.

Please refer to the following resources for more information on funding study abroad

PLEASE NOTE: All University of Maryland study abroad programs are financially self-supporting and, therefore, subject to cancelation due to low enrollment.

Michael Galczynski is a program Co-Director and an Engineering Instructor in the Keystone Program at The University of Maryland. Mike has taught a wide variety of engineering courses, including study abroad programs in California, Australia, Czech Republic, and Italy. Mike is excited to share his passions of sustainability and traveling with students in the magnificently beautiful country of Iceland!

Dr. Natasha Andrade is a program Co-Director and a Lecturer in the Civil and Environmental Engineering Department. Natasha has specialized in teaching undergraduate courses with a focus in Environmental Engineering and is particularly interested in the role of renewable energy. While her primary focus is instruction, she is also currently doing research in her field.

For course, itinerary or in-country information, please contact the Program Director. For general questions or assistance with applying, contact EA Short-term Programs.

As a part of this program, you will engage in the following activities:

  • Visit geothermal and hydroelectric power stations.
  • Immerse yourself in Icelandic culture by visiting museums, interacting with local Icelandic guides, and sampling some of Iceland’s finest foods.
  • Explore the capital city of Reykjavik and learn about its history and architecture.
  • Experience some of Iceland’s most breathtaking natural wonders: Gulfoss Waterfall, Strokur Geysir, Tjingvellir National Park, The Secret Lagoon, Mount Kirkjufell, Sólheimajökull Glacier and many more!
Term Year Application Deadline Admission Notification Program Start Program End
Summerterm 2019 03/01/2019 03/11/2019 05/23/2019 06/03/2019