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African Expedition

Dates: 29 April–29 May 2024 (approx.)
Application Deadline: 29 February 2024

Join us for a once-in-a-lifetime experience and take in the splendor of southern Africa. Travel from the peak of Cape Town’s Table Mountain to the red sands of the Namib Desert, the oldest desert in the world; experience the best wildlife areas on the African continent; and stand on the edge of the "Smoke that Thunders," the mighty Victoria Falls. Wake up to the roar of lions and relax next to the waterhole as the "Big Five" (lion, leopard, black rhinoceros, elephant, and African buffalo) stroll in to quench their thirst. Visit one of the great botanical gardens of the world and meander among the more than seven thousand diverse plant species. Spend a day with the San (Bushmen) people and learn about their intimate knowledge and relationship with the natural world. Come with us, fill your soul, and let your heart beat to the pulse of Africa as you make the world your campus!

“Teach ye diligently and my grace shall attend you . . . of things both in heaven and in the earth, and under the earth . . . of things which are at home, things which are abroad . . . and a knowledge also of countries and of kingdoms—that ye may be prepared in all things when I shall send you again to magnify the calling whereunto I have called you, and the mission with which I have commissioned you” (D&C 88:78–80).

Click here to apply today!


Contact Us

Tom Smith
5050 LSB
(801) 422-2151


Program Flyer


Frequently Asked Questions
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More Information

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All participants will enroll in 4 credit hours of PWS 494R—Biogeography, Ecology, and Natural History of Southern Africa.

Participants may not take any other courses on this program, including BYU Online courses, without approval by the program director and ISP.
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Includes accommodation, most meals, professional guides, transportation in Africa, entry fees, BYU LDS undergraduate tuition, and international health insurance coverage.

Does not include airfare to and from the program, preparation course tuition, some meals, or miscellaneous (optional) expenses.
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Funding Sources

Regular BYU tuition scholarships, Pell Grants, and Federal Insured Student Loans may be applied to study abroad programs.

Students who submit the financial aid section of the ISP application and who have a current FAFSA form on file at the Financial Aid Office (A-41 ASB) will be considered for a Study Abroad scholarship.

Academic departments and colleges may assist with scholarships and grants.

Private grants and scholarships outside of BYU may also assist (see
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All students who are accepted into the program are expected to register for a 1-credit, pre-departure preparation class held during the second block of winter semester.

BYU students are expected to keep all aspects of the BYU Honor Code and ISP rules during the program.

Students must meet all country- and program-specific COVID and health requirements for travel.
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The group will stay in mid-range accommodations and safari lodges. Students will have Internet access, laundry facilities, and other amenities at each location. All the housing will be safe and has been arranged by two local tour operators.
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Students are responsible for purchasing their own airfare to and from the program sites. Airline reservations must be made through BYU Travel. Students should contact a BYU Travel agent.

BYU Travel
280 HRCB
(801) 422-6293
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Application Process

Applicants should note that this program is highly competitive. It is strongly suggested that applicants prepare to apply to an alternative program.

Students must be 18 years of age or older to participate.

Complete the online application here. A nonrefundable $35 application fee is required; applicants will be interviewed once the application is complete.

Students will be notified via e-mail of their acceptance into the program. The first payment is due upon acceptance; please refer to the Payment Information document.

Priority Deadline: 1 November 2023
Application Deadline: 29 February 2024
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Program Adjustments

International Study Programs (ISP) reserves the right to cancel this program, revise its offerings, or make any adjustments to the preliminary cost.

If it becomes necessary for ISP to cancel a program, all program payments made to BYU ISP will be refunded to the student’s BYU Financial account.

ISP is the only office authorized to cancel any of its programs.
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Tom Smith is a professor of wildlife ecology in the Department of Plant and Wildlife Sciences. His research focuses on human-wildlife interactions with emphasis on bears, bobcats, and bighorn sheep. He will help you explore the diversity and connections among biological organisms and their environment in the incredible landscapes of southern Africa and coastal waters.

5050 LSB
(801) 422-2151

Carolyn and Mark Vermeulen hail from South Africa, and Carolyn also spent three years living in Namibia. Carolyn is the office manager for the Plant & Wildlife Sciences Department.

4015 LSB
(801) 422-2760
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Contact Us

International Study Programs
101 HRCB
(801) 422-3686
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ISP Student Handbook

To see the student handbook, click here.
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Payment Schedule

To see the payment schedule, click here.