Our Commitment to Sustainability

Monteverde Institute

In keeping with its vision "a sustainable community for a sustainable world", the Monteverde Institute considers its impact on the natural and social environment of Monteverde in every facet of its operations. We continually are reviewing current practices and pursuing options to reduce our carbon footprint and to benefit the local community.

We are currently working to execute the Sustainability Standards of Good Practice developed by the Forum on Education Abroad that all education programs should strive to meet. We also recently completed an external energy audit and were applauded for having an “impressively small” carbon footprint. We also are exploring the economic viability of taking the Institute “off the grid” in the near future. While still in the planning stages of constructing new classrooms and student areas, the Institute commissioned a report on the most efficient and green ways to build them. 

In the meantime, the Institute takes many steps to be as economically, environmentally, and socially sustainable as possible

Environmental Stewardship

  Social Responsibility

 Economic Sustainability

As a non-profit and a leader in the local business community, the Monteverde Institute promotes economic and corporate sustainability toward all of its stakeholders.

Evidenced by low employee turn-over, the Institute emphasizes quality of work, flexibility, and offers high pay compared to the local market. It trusts its employees to hold themselves and the institute accountable by using collaborative decision-making in crafting its strategic plans and in administering virtually every aspect of its corporate model. It seeks to have a positive impact, as well, on the local community by providing a variety of services and using local, sustainable providers for its study-abroad courses. It recruits and trains local people to act as coordinators, and it supports and encourages them in continuing their educations. Additionally, the Institute regularly holds free, donation-based, or nominal-fee seminars on topics ranging from maternal health, computer literacy, English as a Second Language, to Peace Studies geared toward local needs.

Moreover, the Monteverde Institute works with the local municipality and the business community by spearheading initiatives like Traveler’s Philanthropy and the Finca La Bella project. Through its Sustainable Futures Program, the Institute uses applied student research to encourage sustainable infrastructure development. It also works with the municipality to encourage sustainable economic diversification and to deepen the economic base in the Monteverde zone.

Through its homestay program, the Institute gives back to its community, as well. Although families are well compensated for participating, they also are able to take advantage of programs and classes specifically geared toward them. In the last couple of years, the community extension program has initiated a sustainability and energy audit in its homestay families, and the families have participated enthusiastically. 

Finally, as a result of its mission, the Institute has systematically increased its emphasis on service learning in numerous study-abroad courses. This new focus has led to the development of needs-based research and authentic community-based projects. 

The non-profit status of the Institutute ensures that its foci are on producing exemplary academic content, giving back to the community through service learning, promoting original, applied research, and being a leader and model of responsible corporate stewardship in the local business community.

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